Gorilla Glass 3 Exclusive Hands-On: Somehow Even More Indestructible

Corning is unveiling the newest iteration of its popular Gorilla Glass line of scratch-resistant and crack-resistant screens at CES tomorrow. But we were able to get an early preview of just how tough GG3 really is. And boy is it.

The original Gorilla Glass was an immediate hit when it launched in 2007 and has since been implanted in over a billion products. Reformulated Gorilla Glass 2, in turn, offered the same amount of protection as its predecessor while using 20 per cent less material — shrugging off minor scratches and nicks while minimising their visibility on the screen.

The newest version is the strongest yet. Gorilla Glass 3 features Native Scratch Resistance, which dents and deforms rather than cracking and splintering as other screens do. Damage is 40 per cent less visible and offers a 40 per cent increase in its structural stability. This means that any gouges from house keys or loose pocket change much less visible and far less likely expand and spread the next time you drop your phone.

In the demo above, a Corning rep shows us what happens when you roll a 175g steel ball bearing down a 24-inch track at a series of pre-scratched test plates (these test plates were scored with an industrial diamond using 7 Newtons of force). The first two plates, made of conventional glass and an unnamed competitors piece, immediately shattered upon the ball's impact. The aluminium plate in the third run, which was machined to the same thickness as GG3 suffered obvious deformation. However the final plate, loaded with Gorilla Glass 3, barely showed a mark. While Corning is unveiling GG3 this week, the company is still prepping it for wide release so don't expect to find it in new gadgets until the second half of 2013.

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