Apple WILL go with the Sapphire coated home button
Remember this article?
"Market rumors that the new generation of Apple's iPhone may adopt sapphire crystal glass for the home button have been circulating and Taiwan-based sapphire substrate maker Tera Xtal has reportedly sent samples to Apple for verification. However, the firm refused to comment on the rumors.
The sapphire industry has been anticipating the possibility for sapphire substrates being adopted for non-LED applications in the third quarter of 2013. This could lower inventories and firms may be able to increase prices."
Fast Forward July 18, 2013(today)
"China-based GCL-Poly Energy Holdings has quit production of sapphire ingots and will sell two factories together with production equipment in eastern China to Taiwan-based sapphire wafer maker Tera Xtal Technology.
GCL Poly's suspended sapphire ingot production due to continued falls in sapphire wafer price, the sources indicated.
Tera Xtal said it will acquire one of the factories at CNY135 million (US$22 million) and the other at CNY72 million. As prices for sapphire ingots are still in low levels, Tera Xtal will not produce sapphire ingots at the two factories, the company said. Instead, it will use them to produce sapphire wafers, with total monthly production capacity expected to reach 250,000-300,000 wafers by the end of 2013, the company said.
Tera Xtal said it currently has a total monthly production capacity of 400,000-500,000 sapphire wafers in Taiwan.
A Hong Kong-based holding company established by the chairman of GCL-Poly has subscribed to 30 million new shares issued by Tera Xtal at NT$38 per share for private placement, equivalent to a stake of about 15%."
So why would Tera Xtal be buying factories from GCL Poly to produce more sapphire wafers in an industry over run with supply???
The writing is on the wall.
Apple WILL go with the SAPPHIRE coated home button.
And what are the implications?
Rising prices + Rising demand + increased adoption = Profit
Analysts and the media are notorious for being wrong about what Apple will do until about a week before the announcement, and even then they get about half of it wrong. There is zero reason to believe anything at this point. Read the Apple sites, they are all over the place on what is coming next. As an Apple follower I would think sapphire is more likely on an iPhone 6, the 5s will be a minor upgrade if history is any example.