You can say goodbye to lens scratches and lens flares when using your smartphone camera -- at least if you're planning to buy a higher-end Android phone in the coming months and years.
Glass maker Corning on Thursday unveiled its new Gorilla Glass DX and DX Plus glass composite covers for smartphone cameras. DX and DX Plus, thin layers created by fusing glass with coatings for antireflection, sit atop camera lenses to make them more durable and improve image quality. Designed to work with lenses that use Gorilla Glass as the top cover layer, DX and DX Plus feature "superior" scratch resistance and also let in more light than glass on its own.
The aim is to make smartphone camera lenses that use glass as durable as those that use sapphire -- but also make the lenses much better at avoiding lens flares, ghosting and other issues caused by light reflection, John Bayne, the head of Corning's mobile consumer electronics division, said in an interview ahead of the news.
"Materials matter ... especially when the number of cameras is going up, the size of the lenses is going up," he said. "You have to believe, going forward, people are really going to start paying attention to the quality of their photos and how to make them better and better."
Samsung again will be the first company to use Corning's latest glass technology in its upcoming smartphones. The company will hold a virtual Unpacked event on Aug. 11, where it's expected to unveil new foldables, wearables and possibly a Galaxy S21 FE smartphone.
To consumers, Corning is probably best known for its Pyrex glassware in the kitchen. But it's also a major supplier of glass displays for smartphones, TVs and other electronics. Phones from Apple and Samsung use Corning's latest technologies, and Apple in 2019 invested $250 million in Corning, on top of a $200 million investment from 2017, for the development of glass for the iPhone, Apple Watch and iPad.