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  • No Liquid Metal iPhone For a Long, Long Time


    It's been a hotly and widely discussed prospect on MMi for a long time. One day soon, the rumor mill has repeatedly suggested, we will see the first Terminator-esque liquid metal iPhone.

    Well, according to the man who knows liquid metal best, "soon" is still a long, long way away. Dr. Atakan Peker, the man credited with creating and cultivating Liquidmetal, says the technology and economics behind a liquid metal iPhone just don't make sense for Apple right now.

    "This is a technology that has yet to be matured and perfected both in manufacturing process and application development," Dr. Peker admitted to Business Insider this week. "I should note that this is a completely new and different metal technology."

    Dr. Peker maintains that hundreds of millions would have to be spent over a period of years to create the facilities and resources necessary to mass produce a liquid metal iPhone. And for that reason, it's likely not on Apple's radar at this time.

    Still, Apple retains an exclusive lock and license on the liquidmetal technology. So it is, however, very likely that the iPhone maker will, one day, do more with its possession than just ponder its potential.

    "Liquidmetal is super strong, scratch and corrosion resistant, resilient and can be precision cast into complex shapes," Dr. Peker confirms."Plastics are low cost to manufacture into complex shapes but not strong enough. Metals are strong but difficult to produce into complex shapes. And glass feels and looks beautiful but is highly fragile. Liquidmetal can combine these advantages and remedy some of these shortcomings."

    Source: Business Insider
    This article was originally published in forum thread: No Liquid Metal iPhone For a Long, Long Time started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 18 Comments
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Locks on technology like this are depressing. I can't help but think how many cool and useful techs might not ever see the light of day due to a company sitting on a patent. Not saying that this will happen in this particular case, but it does make me wonder.
    1. AkAdeMicKs's Avatar
      AkAdeMicKs -
      I was looking forward to liquid metal; but, maybe in a few years, we can only dream about it.
    1. Silverado1987's Avatar
      Silverado1987 -
      Anyone else knew it wasn't going to happen?
    1. eZStaR's Avatar
      eZStaR -
      Quote Originally Posted by sziklassy View Post
      Locks on technology like this are depressing. I can't help but think how many cool and useful techs might not ever see the light of day due to a company sitting on a patent. Not saying that this will happen in this particular case, but it does make me wonder.
      So you are saying it is wrong for a company who fairly paid and obtained this technology, because they want their products to be unique separate from the clones which are mass produced by the competition?
    1. EpicKris's Avatar
      EpicKris -
      Quote Originally Posted by eZStaR View Post
      So you are saying it is wrong for a company who fairly paid and obtained this technology, because they want their products to be unique separate from the clones which are mass produced by the competition?
      If they do not use and do not plan to use the technology then yes, I believe patents that are not in use for longer than a certain time frame should become obsolete unless the respective person or company can put forward a strong enough case to prove that they are able to use the technology for their products in the foreseeable future.
    1. eZStaR's Avatar
      eZStaR -
      Quote Originally Posted by EpicKris View Post
      If they do not use and do not plan to use the technology then yes, I believe patents that are not in use for longer than a certain time frame should become obsolete unless the respective person or company can put forward a strong enough case to prove that they are able to use the technology for their products in the foreseeable future.
      Well of course they will use it... As everyone knows, Apple is very secretive, as far as we know, they might pull off bringing this technology on the new iPhone, no one knows... It's just like how they bought siri, and implemented on the new iPhone. Obviously this will take a little more time to do.
    1. EpicKris's Avatar
      EpicKris -
      Quote Originally Posted by eZStaR View Post
      Well of course they will use it... As everyone knows, Apple is very secretive, as far as we know, they might pull off bringing this technology on the new iPhone, no one knows... It's just like how they bought siri, and implemented on the new iPhone. Obviously this will take a little more time to do.
      Sorry, I wasn't really speaking in context of the article, I was just speculated on patents. My apologies.
    1. Jato_BZ's Avatar
      Jato_BZ -
      T800 (iPhone 4/4S) chassis FTW over the liquid metal (T1000) concept ...
    1. TheExtra404's Avatar
      TheExtra404 -
      Liquid metal sounds awesome.
    1. hellman's Avatar
      hellman -
      I more like this glass material on iphone because it make me feel comfortable.I have played sony lt22 but its material of aluminium alloy doesn't attract me.
    1. fklentz's Avatar
      fklentz -
      Interesting, according to this liquidmetal was used by apple for the sim tray on the iPhone 3G.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liquidmeta
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by eZStaR View Post
      So you are saying it is wrong for a company who fairly paid and obtained this technology, because they want their products to be unique separate from the clones which are mass produced by the competition?
      No. Not saying that. Read my post again. Thanks.

      But, since you asked, if a company buys a patent to bury it (note I am nether referring to that being the case now nor was I in my original post) yes, that is wrong, and a fundamental issue with US patent law.
    1. rocketApe's Avatar
      rocketApe -
      What a bummer!!! Oh well, maybe on iPhone 10. Sighhhhh....
    1. bigboyz's Avatar
      bigboyz -
      I kind of figured it would be a looooong time. Apple puts the brakes on tech all the time. It has to be cost effective..they are a business 1st. We've come a long way in the last 5 years and now we expect everything NOW. I don't mind waiting for it a all. Apple will get it right and that's all that matters to me. Im still wondering what the next iPhone will look like and the enhancements it will bring..good stuff!
    1. DEEPTHOUGHT@'s Avatar
      DEEPTHOUGHT@ -
      Damit apple, patent holding knowing them maybe they will make a liquid metal mac book first..... !
      then go for the iphone.....smh of they keep this up we will never get to iphone 15 the tranforming automate titanium alloy companion that talks to you...Cthu
    1. budsalinger's Avatar
      budsalinger -
      it seems likely to happen, me thinks, if apple has the patent locked but they can't do anything with it. Nobody else gets to play with the material and so nothing will ever be done.
    1. bimmercub's Avatar
      bimmercub -
      Quote Originally Posted by fklentz View Post
      Interesting, according to this liquidmetal was used by apple for the sim tray on the iPhone 3G.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liquidmeta
      It was the ejector tool not the sim tray.
    1. AkAdeMicKs's Avatar
      AkAdeMicKs -
      Well, I guess we will be seeing an iPhone that is 3D, liquid metal, charges when you text or has wireless charging in about 50 years.