Having conquered phone displays, Corning is bringing Gorilla Glass to handset cameras. The company's DX and DX+ range of damage-resistant glass will next be available for mobile camera lens covers, starting with Samsung devices. Alongside the added protection, Corning claims its tech can improve the optical performance of smartphone cameras.
According to the company, DX glass essentially results in less light being reflected by the camera cover lens. Currently, even with the use of an anti-reflective coating, around 92 percent of transmitted light enters a smartphone camera. Corning says that with DX/DX+ on the outside a camera lens can capture 98 percent of light, helping to reduce optical issues like ghosting. These reflections are usually caused by a bright light source during daylight or in low-light conditions. Lens hoods and coatings applied to lens surfaces can help to suppress ghosting, also known as ghost reflections.
Some smartphone makers are already working with specialist suppliers to address the problem. Both Sony and Vivo use a Zeiss coating to boost light transmission while reducing flares, ghosting and reflections on their high-end phones.
But, Corning also offers the added benefit of durability and has strong ties with the biggest smartphone makers in the field. The company says its DX glass is scratch resistant and that DX+ approaches the resistance of Sapphire, which is used in high-end watches thanks to its Grade 9 on the Mohs scale — a system for rating the hardness of various minerals. It could even allow you to finally ditch that smartphone case.
Gorilla Glass is now featured on 8 billion devices by more than 45 major brands, according to Corning. While Gorilla Glass DX is also available on more than 30 million wearables. Recognizing its integral role as a supplier, Apple poured $450 million into the company as part of two separate investments in 2017 and 2019.