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Apple's Ive hints new materials to be used in upcoming products, suggests new form factors and...

post #1 of 82
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In an interview with the New York Times, Apple SVP of Design Jony Ive said Apple has been working to incorporate all new materials in future products, suggesting both new form factors and the possible introduction of long-awaited LiquidMetal and sapphire parts.

Mesa
Apple-GT Advanced joint sapphire production facility in Mesa, Ariz.


The NYT on Monday published a longer, edited version of an interview Ive recently gave for a profile of CEO Tim Cook.

In the somewhat truncated Q&A -- only four questions were asked -- Ive covered topics discussed in previous sit-downs including Cook's performance at the helm and the legacy of cofounder Steve Jobs. As what amounts to an aside, Ive let loose that he and his team have been working "for years" on using totally new materials for future products.

"I would love to talk about future stuff - they're materials we haven't worked in before," Ive said. "I've been working on this stuff for a few years now. Tim is fundamentally involved in pushing into these new areas and into these materials."

Aside from being surprisingly open about as-yet-unannounced product plans, the design chief's statement suggests Apple will reveal a redesign to an existing product line, or the debut of a completely new device.

Ive said Apple is well versed in employing new materials to solve design problems and pointed to the days when the company's laptops were made of plastic. Recalling the development of the titanium PowerBook G4, which launched in 2001, he said the exotic metal was used to realize a new thin-and-light form factor computer that could not be accomplished with composites.

"There was a whole range of challenges from an engineering point of view: How it worked in a new material, titanium," Ive said. "That meant we had to completely redesign and discover new partners to work with, hire a whole new organization."

The quote mirrors current goings-on at Apple, with a partnership with sapphire glass maker GT Advanced and a long-standing, yet underutilized, licensing agreement with LiquidMetal. Ive is possibly telegraphing that those new materials, and possibly others, may see use in Apple's near-future product lineup.

It was reported in late April that sapphire production in full swing at GT Advanced's facility in Mesa, Ariz., while an SEC filing in May revealed Apple had again renewed its contract for exclusive rights to use LiquidMetal in consumer electronics through 2015.

In addition to the new product tease, Ive once again discussed focusing on the product, a tenet many Apple executives tout as being built in to the company's DNA.

"I wish I could do a better job in communicating this truth here, which is when you really are focused on the product, that's not a platitude," he said. "When that truly is your reason for coming into the studio, is just to try to make the very best product you can, when that is exclusive of everything else, it's remarkable how insignificant or unimportant a lot of other stuff becomes. Titles or organizational structures, that's not the lens through which we see our peers."
post #2 of 82

Ive is such a tease. :)

post #3 of 82
Is this the same NY Times that AI claimed Apple shut out in their profile piece on Tim Cook?
post #4 of 82
It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

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post #5 of 82

Please Sharks with Lasers….

One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

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One thought he was invincible... the other thought he could fly.

They were both wrong.

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post #6 of 82
Business Insider is a hoot. Jay Yarrow says Ive is trying to recast the Tim Cook story in terms of product development. I guess he forgot that Tim ran Operations at Apple, the organization responsible for ensuring Ive's designs could be built cost effectively en mass? How in the world could Cook not be involved in product development?!?
post #7 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

lol -

well, it's just that they're so poetic -

they had to make it rhyme with 'aluminium' after all.

post #8 of 82
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post
Aside from being surprisingly open about as-yet-unannounced product plans...

 

There are two main reasons to keep future product plans secret:

1. To prevent the Osborne effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osborne_effect)

2. To maximize your lead time over would-be competitors

 

There's always the danger of lost sales if you announce an updated product too early.  You need to balance lost sales of the current model with the need to create buzz about the upcoming model.  I think Apple has mastered that particular balancing act.  And yes, I'm pretty sure many of these component "leaks" are part of Apple's viral marketing plan.

 

But if your materials and manufacturing techniques are years ahead of the pack, there's no need for secrecy.  Your competitors won't be able to replicate your materials or manufacturing techniques in time to make any difference.  (Especially if you have exclusive rights to any or all of that, as Apple does with Liquidmetal in consumer electronics.)

 

Some day, there will be a Liquidmetal iPhone with a synthetic sapphire screen.

Maybe sooner than we expected.  And Apple doesn't need to keep that a secret.  At all.

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post #9 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by DimMok View Post

Please Sharks with Lasers….

I "sooo disappointed" that Apple is not working on self-driving sharks with jet packs and lasers for mining asteroids.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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post #10 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

There are two main reasons to keep future product plans secret:
1. To prevent the Osborne effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osborne_effect)
2. To maximize your lead time over would-be competitors

3. Allow yourself to not make promises you can't keep due to unexpected circumstances.

A couple notable examples are Resolution Independence announced at the 10.4(?) event and FaceTime going open source during the iOS 4(?) event.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #11 of 82
It's totally a guess that Apple will be using Liquid Metal. After Jony made his announcement, Samsung announced they will be soon be making their cases out of unobtainium. You heard it here first folks!
"That (the) world is moving so quickly that iOS is already amongst the older mobile operating systems in active development today." — The Verge
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post #12 of 82
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post
It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

 

Remember that the Briton that discovered/named aluminum named it thus, and it was only a newspaper that decided they could name it whatever they wanted that the second I got thrown in there. Disgusting.

 

Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post
A couple notable examples are Resolution Independence announced at the 10.4(?) event and FaceTime going open source during the iOS 4(?) event.

 

Yep, both right.

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post #13 of 82

I suppose it would be odd if such a thing never happened regardless of advances in materials tech.  Seeing Apple continue to push the frontiers as they have for so long is expected.

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post #14 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

And for good reason..........don't want this kind of confusion¡

 

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amorphophallus_titanum

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post #15 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

It's totally a guess that Apple will be using Liquid Metal. After Jony made his announcement, Samsung announced they will be soon be making their cases out of unobtainium. You heard it here first folks!

Wow! That would be one light phone! It would just float beside you as you walk. Or would that just open Pandora's box? News headline "Samsung wipes out entire village of indigenous species to build their next phone."

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post #16 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

It's totally a guess that Apple will be using Liquid Metal. After Jony made his announcement, Samsung announced they will be soon be making their cases out of unobtainium. You heard it here first folks!

 



Haha. Close. Samsung will have cases that are unobtainium colored plastic
post #17 of 82

I've been feeling like they needed to go somewhere besides aluminum for a while. It's not bad, just a bit old at this point.

Too many Apple products to list...Long on AAPL, so take what I say with a bucket of salt.
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post #18 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

Uh uh... The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) officially standardised on aluminium in 1990.
The pretension is all American....but only officially since 1925 btw, first in disagreeing with the naming by the great Sir Humphrey Davy and then having a list of metals comprising....well do you really say also chronum, rhodum, cadmum all before we get to say caesium... I give up, I can't defeat spellchecker anymore...1tongue.gif
post #19 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post
 

I've been feeling like they needed to go somewhere besides aluminum for a while. It's not bad, just a bit old at this point.

And yet when HTC came out with the unibody aluminum One everyone drooled over it. What material would you prefer Apple use over aluminum? 

post #20 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post
 

 

There are two main reasons to keep future product plans secret:

1. To prevent the Osborne effect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osborne_effect)

2. To maximize your lead time over would-be competitors

 

Actually there is only one main reason - marketing.  The amount of free marketing Apple has received by keeping schtum is immeasurable. Given that Apple and Jobs always had the gift to wow the crowds, which in turn was backed up by great products, the silence must truly have been, and still is, an awesome weapon. If everybody knew what Apple was bringing out the mystique would fizzle and there would be little to write about. As it is column after column is written in speculation of what 'might' come. Genius.

post #21 of 82

Titanium Macbook Pro...

Aluminium Macbook Pro...

Sapphire Macbook Pro? :)

post #22 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frac View Post

Uh uh... The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) officially standardised on aluminium in 1990.
The pretension is all American....but only officially since 1925 btw, first in disagreeing with the naming by the great Sir Humphrey Davy and then having a list of metals comprising....well do you really say also chronum, rhodum, cadmum all before we get to say caesium... I give up, I can't defeat spellchecker anymore...1tongue.gif

1) My comment went way, way over your cranum.

2) If you want to discuss the most abundant metal in the Earth's crust then the term aluminum predates aluminium. It was the British that decided after the fact and without consideration to any standards body to make the word use the -ium suffix to more closely match other metals on the periodic table.

3) Your argument that every American is pretentious for not converting their language in the last 24 years because of what the IUPAC wants is ridiculous.
Edited by SolipsismX - 6/16/14 at 4:41pm

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #23 of 82
Originally Posted by Frac View Post
The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) officially standardised on aluminium in 1990.

 

Who gives a frick what they say?

 
... British chemist and inventor Humphry Davy... ...settled on aluminum by the time he published his 1812 book Chemical Philosophy... But the same year, an anonymous contributor to the Quarterly Review, a British political-literary journal, in a review of Davy's book, objected to aluminum and proposed the name aluminum, "for so we shall take the liberty of writing the word, in preference to aluminum, which has a less classical sound."

 

The pretension is all YOURS, sir. Get over it.

 
...first in disagreeing with the naming by the great Sir Humphrey Davy...

 

Except the exact opposite is true. As for the rest of your post, try looking at the periodic table sometime. 

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

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post #24 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡
That's al-u-mini-um!
post #25 of 82

What's it matter. People will just put a plastic case around it.

post #26 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by TeeJay2012 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

It's totally a guess that Apple will be using Liquid Metal. After Jony made his announcement, Samsung announced they will be soon be making their cases out of unobtainium. You heard it here first folks!

 



Haha. Close. Samsung will have cases that are unobtainium colored plastic
Apparently this is Samsung's new "premium" metal Galaxy phone:

post #27 of 82
Everyone wants a phone with stretch marks.
post #28 of 82
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
Apparently this is Samsung's new "premium" metal Galaxy phone:

 

Makes sense. They've never so much as seen champagne, so they couldn't get the color right. :p

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

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post #29 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's so pretentious how the British add an 'i' to the word titanum¡

Not sure that Apple should be building products from Corpse plants. I think titanium is a much better option....

post #30 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

Apparently this is Samsung's new "premium" metal Galaxy phone:


Are you sure that shouldn't be 'premum' metal ... 1wink.gif
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From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
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post #31 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post
 

I've been feeling like they needed to go somewhere besides aluminum for a while. It's not bad, just a bit old at this point.

Aluminum is one of the most recyclable metals. Recycling aluminum from scrap uses 5% of the energy necessary to make new metal from bauxite ore.

 

It is hugely important in terms of Apple's environmental responsibility in using this planet's finite resources.


Edited by mpantone - 6/16/14 at 6:49pm
post #32 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

1) My comment went way, way over your cranum.

2) If you want to discuss the most abundant metal in the Earth's crust then the term aluminum predates aluminium. It was the British that decided after the fact and without consideration to any standards body to make the word use the -ium suffix to more closely match other metals on the periodic table.

3) Your argument that every American is pretentious for not converting their language in the last 24 years because of what the IUPAC wants is ridiculous.

In the "thumbs-up" comment, I originally typed "Cranum" but the autocorrect tripped me up. Sigh.
post #33 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


1) My comment went way, way over your cranum.

2) If you want to discuss the most abundant metal in the Earth's crust then the term aluminum predates aluminium. It was the British that decided after the fact and without consideration to any standards body to make the word use the -ium suffix to more closely match other metals on the periodic table.

3) Your argument that every American is pretentious for not converting their language in the last 24 years because of what the IUPAC wants is ridiculous.


Not that I really care but....

 

http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/aluminium.htm

"...

The metal was named by the English chemist Sir Humphry Davy ..., even though he was unable to isolate it: that took another two decades’ work by others. He derived the name from the mineral called alumina, which itself had only been named in English by the chemist Joseph Black in 1790. Black took it from the French, who had based it on alum, a white mineral that had been used since ancient times for dyeing and tanning, among other things. Chemically, this is potassium aluminium sulphate...

Sir Humphry made a bit of a mess of naming this new element, at first spelling it alumium (this was in 1807) then changing it to aluminum, and finally settling on aluminium in 1812. His classically educated scientific colleagues preferred aluminium right from the start, because it had more of a classical ring, and chimed harmoniously with many other elements whose names ended in –ium, like potassium, sodium, and magnesium, all of which had been named by Davy.

The spelling in –um continued in occasional use in Britain for a while, though that in –ium soon predominated. In the USA, the position was more complicated. Noah Webster’s Dictionary of 1828 has only aluminum, though the standard spelling among US chemists throughout most of the nineteenth century was aluminium; it was the preferred version in The Century Dictionary of 1889 and is the only spelling given in the Webster Unabridged Dictionary of 1913. Searches in an archive of American newspapers show a most interesting shift. Up to the 1890s, both spellings appear in rough parity, though with the –ium version slightly the more common, but after about 1895 that reverses quite substantially, with the decade starting in 1900 having the –um spelling about twice as common as the alternative; in the following decade the –ium spelling crashes to a few hundred compared to half a million examples of –um.

..."

post #34 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

3. Allow yourself to not make promises you can't keep due to unexpected circumstances.

A couple notable examples are Resolution Independence announced at the 10.4(?) event and FaceTime going open source during the iOS 4(?) event.
Yay that's included. I can see it if apple annoced a major product that came 12 months later, with no ther consequences except Samsung copying the idea in time to release there's 11.5 months later annocing that apple was far behind them/
post #35 of 82

English is famous for stealing words from other languages. Here is a nice quote from James Nicoll:

"The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary."

 

What the US is to nations (taking the best of all cultures without prejudice) English is to languages.

 

I personally prefer the Aluminium spelling, not because I grew up with British-English, but because it sounds more Latin, and there is a tradition in English of using Latin names for scientific or medical things (such as classifications of plants and animals). 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foreign_language_influences_in_English

post #36 of 82
Ameri
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frac View Post

Uh uh... The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) officially standardised on aluminium in 1990.
The pretension is all American....but only officially since 1925 btw, first in disagreeing with the naming by the great Sir Humphrey Davy and then having a list of metals comprising....well do you really say also chronum, rhodum, cadmum all before we get to say caesium... I give up, I can't defeat spellchecker anymore...1tongue.gif
Ameridumb
post #37 of 82
The amusing thing about the British Preference for "AL-you-MIN-ium" is that it violates the rules of their own dialect (or Received Pronunciation™, anyway) against secondary stress. They have to say "MIL-i-try" and "SEC-re-try", but then they pick out a few words to violate their own rules with, apparently just to be different from the American pronunciation.

You can sometimes hear a momentary pause before each word as they shift mental gears before saying "AL-you-MIN-ium" or "OH-re-GAH-no" or "JAG-YOU-ar".
Edited by Mac-sochist - 6/16/14 at 8:23pm
post #38 of 82

Thread theme song.

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post #39 of 82

Liquidmetal

post #40 of 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac-sochist View Post

The amusing thing about the British Preference for "AL-you-MIN-ium" is that it violates the rules of their own dialect (or Received Pronunciation™, anyway) against secondary stress. They have to say "MIL-i-try" and "SEC-re-try", but then they pick out a few words to violate their own rules with, apparently just to be different from the American pronunciation.

You can sometimes hear a momentary pause before each word as they shift mental gears before saying "AL-you-MIN-ium" or "OH-re-GAH-no" or "JAG-YOU-ar".

 

I wouldn't call it a 'rule', it's more like a custom or habit.

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