Apple spends big bucks on making your iPhone screen hard to break

Apple invests another $45m in Corning, the company that makes all its iPhone glass.


May 14, 2021

If you like to break stuff, enjoy this video of a man discovering it takes about 442 newtons of pressure to crack the iPhone 12’s “ceramic shield” screen.

On a related note: Apple just announced it’s kicking $45m from its $5B Advanced Manufacturing Fund (AMF) to Corning Inc., the company that makes the glass used in the iPhone, Apple Watch, and iPad.

Tough as… glass?

Apple has already given Corning $450m over 4 years to help develop Ceramic Shield, a glass-ceramic material that gets its toughness from tiny, embedded ceramic crystals.

Interestingly, all the company’s iPhone glass has been produced at Corning’s plant in Harrodsburg, Kentucky.

Corning is also well known for its Gorilla Glass, which is used in other smartphones, laptops, tablets, and watches.

The AMF was established in 2017

Here’s what else they’ve done with it:

  • Earlier this month, Apple announced a $410m award to II-VI, which makes the tech for the iPhone’s Face ID and Portrait mode.
  • Last May, Apple put $10m up our noses. Meaning, they gave it to Copan Diagnostics to help speed up production of sample collection kits for COVID-19 testing.

All of this new tech probably helps explain…

… why the average selling price of a new iPhone in the US is now $873, a company record.

As for the upgraded Ceramic Shield, we don’t care how strong it is — we’re still grabbing dozens of screen and case protectors for our phones.

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