Sapphire surfaces like those used on TouchID were not used for the screen on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.
Today, synthetic sapphire manufacturer GT Advanced Technologies (GTAT) and Apple announced their agreement [PDF] to dissolve their partnership amicably after GTAT filed a surprising bankruptcy claim earlier this month. The proceedings threatened to expose information about Apple’s dealings with GTAT, something Apple desperately wanted to hide, as evidenced by court filings from Apple asking that its objection to GTAT’s Chapter 11 proceedings be submitted in secret.
Now it seems that GTAT and Apple may be able to keep the terms of their relationship private indefinitely. As the Wall Street Journal reported, “GT Advanced and Apple have agreed to file a revised explanation for GT Advanced’s surprise bankruptcy filing as part of the pact and ultimately erase from the public record the court papers that set out what went wrong in the relationship between the two companies.”
Apple and GTAT had partnered to produce ultra-hard sapphire material, which some rumored would replace Corning Glass as the material for Apple’s products’ screens. Instead, Apple released its last iPhone 6 and 6 Plus with traditional Corning Glass, reserving sapphire surfaces for camera lenses and TouchID buttons. A few weeks after the most recent iPhone announcements, GTAT filed for bankruptcy in a move that seemed to surprise investors, shareholders, and Apple itself.
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