Without glass, there would be no swiping left. There’d also be no swiping right, for that matter. It seems obvious to say that glass is an important part of your smartphone’s touchscreen, but there is so much more that glass does to make mobile technology possible. It’s an important component of the cameras, displays, and sensors used in phones today, and possibly even the antennas that knit together the network in the future.
Each of these applications requires glass with specific – and surprising – properties. Read on to find out how specialty glass is making today’s and tomorrow’s mobile technology possible.
glass in smartphone camerasNo lens, no camera. That’s obvious. But high-end, high-resolution digital photography requires a special filter to make cameras behave like our eyes and replicate true color. In high-quality phones and digital single-lens reflex cameras, these filters are called near-infrared (NIR) cutoff filters, and they play a vital role in producing high-quality photographs in difficult light or extreme conditions.
NIR cutoff filters are typically found in any camera that shoots above five megapixels, and are much more reliable than one alternative, known as interference filters. The trick is producing glass thin enough for smartphones that still absorbs a high level of NIR light. That’s something SCHOTT has done with its Blue Filter Glass.
Curved glass for the human touch:
Smartphones are increasingly turning to fingerprint sensors as a security device. Nearly seven of every ten phones shipped in 2018 will have a fingerprint sensor. It has to be strong, prepared to withstand the human finger pushing it dozens of times per day for years.
SCHOTT AS 87 eco is thinner than a human hair, polished with fire, and almost as hard as sapphire glass. These properties ensure excellent optical transmission characteristics that are important to sensors, while at the same time remaining scratch resistant. And because SCHOTT AS 87 eco can be bent and molded, it can be shaped to the curve of a finger.