According to Digitimes, curved glass screens are going to be the hot trend of mobile phones and tablets, beginning in the first half of 2012.
The Taiwan news site cites its ambiguous industry sources, saying that both Apple and Apple’s competitors are planning to release products with curved touchscreens. Apple has reportedly invested in glass polishing equipment for its suppliers.
Non-Apple mobile device manufacturers may be planning curved glass displays as a way to distinguish their products from iDevices, giving them a leg up on Apple. Sources in the glass industry have indicated that suppliers are attempting to gain a competitive edge with a unique design.
However, Apple’s rumored to have jumped on the curved glass bandwagon as well, and Lens Technology, Fuji Crystal, and G-Tech are said to be glass suppliers for the Cupertino company. Lens Technology and Fuji Crystal specialize in iPhones, while G-Tech primarily produces iPad displays, indicating that both the iPad and the iPhone could have a curved design at some point in the future.
A similar report by Digitimes in May claimed that the iPhone 5 would make use of curved glass, but that’s unlikely to be the case. The iPad 3, however, is expected to be released in 2012 and could potentially make use of the new glass.
Of course, Digitimes often reports rumors that turn out to be untrue or plain wrong, so whether or not we’ll actually see curved glass in future Apple versions of the iPhone and iPad remains to be seen.
If you’re wondering what a curved glass display on a phone or an iPad might look like, the Google Nexus S, pictured above, features a curved glass display.