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Apple and Liquidmetal Technologies Extend Intellectual Property Agreement Until 2014

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 18, 2012.

  1. macrumors bot



    In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing made today, Liquidmetal Technologies announced that it has extended its agreement with Apple to effectively license its ongoing intellectual property development for an additional two years.

    The agreement, which is funneled through a subsidiary known as Crucible Intellectual Property, LLC, provides Apple with a full license to all of Liquidmetal's intellectual property for commercialization in consumer electronics. The original deal required that Liquidmetal submit all of its intellectual property discoveries to the subsidiary through February 5, 2012, but the new amendment effective as of last Friday extends the agreement through February 5, 2014.

    Apple acquired the rights to Liquidmetal's amorphous metal alloys in August 2010 after having tested the material in the iPhone 3G SIM eject tool. But broader use of Liquidmetal's alloys, which offer improvements in strength and durability over current alloys while proving easy to cast into complex shapes, is likely several years off.

    Article Link: Apple and Liquidmetal Technologies Extend Intellectual Property Agreement Until 2014
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Where is my Liquidmetal Mac/iDevice?
  3. macrumors member

    bummer, I was hoping to see it sooner
  4. macrumors 65816


    Def some excitIng possibilities here. Looking forward to what they decide to push through.
  5. macrumors 68040


    Nothing to see here, it's just Apple blocking others in the market from innovating further.
  6. macrumors regular

    Terminator 2.... I hope future iPhones will shatter into a bunch of droplets when you drop them, and then reform themselves when the pieces mold back together.
  7. macrumors 68040


  8. macrumors member

    Others had Apple's opportunities.

    They didn't bother taking them.
  9. macrumors regular


    No way! Apple ninja stars for Christmas, kids :)

    [or super strong and lightweight gadgets in a year or two]
  10. macrumors 6502


    Im just interested to see if apple will do something magical with it!
  11. Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

  12. macrumors 68030


    If this didn't have the cool name "Liquid Metal" would we even pay any attention to it? I mean this has been used as a sim ejection tool and that is it so far. And it was only used then just so Apple could check it out.

    Yes it allows somewhat harder metals. But even the aluminum Apple uses now has so far been hard enough for most purposes. And that is a really soft metal. I'm not really sure if there is anything to see here.
  13. macrumors 6502a

    There's an obvious reason they bought the exclusive license, even though they're not using it. ...it's to keep anyone else from using it.
  14. macrumors 6502a


    lol I love how this image has devolved from being well-liked to becoming possibly the biggest downvote magnet on this site
  15. macrumors 68030

    That's what I was beginning to wonder. They're certainly taking their time.

    Perhaps the sim ejection tool was a trivial application in a released product intended to deflect complaints of patent-sitting?
  16. macrumors 68000


    It's gotten so old, it was funny the first two or three times... after a couple hundred it's just time to move on.
  17. macrumors G5


    More like Apple fighting the terminator robots with liquid metal weapons.
  18. macrumors 68020

    Far less expensive to inject liquid metal into a mold than to cnc machine a block of metal.

    So - what will be seen- in theory - is lower prices (ha ha) or more Apple profit.

    Stockholders win either way.
  19. macrumors 603


    I find it hard to believe the SIM eject tool is the one and only component they have made with the tech to date. We just don't hear about the others, and they are slowly added as opportunities and development warrants.

    It may be a subset of the technologies, and the processing methods that facilitates, are already being applied to RMBP units.

    It would be cool if they would make announcements on 2-3 examples.

  20. macrumors 68040


    iPhone SIM Eject Tool - the most advanced of its kind, yet. :rolleyes:
  21. macrumors 68030


    Liquid Metal

    ....and people wonder why the backs of those iPhone 5 images "looked different".

    Anyone into Wireless Charging? :cool:
  22. macrumors 6502

    Wonder when we'll see it more prominently in apple products....
  23. macrumors G5


    Tablet pcs were thousands of dollars.
    People thought Apple tablet will be >$1000.
    But Apple introduced $499 iPad.
  24. macrumors 65816


    Amorphic metal has been a goal of manufacturers for decades if not longer. Metal tends to fail where crystals intersect. If you cool a metal down fast enough, metals don't form crystals. The problem is, even if you drop molten metal into liquid nitrogen, the outside cools fast enough to be amorphic, however, the inside remains flawed. The only solution before Liquid Metal was to make very thin strips of laminated metal, then glue them together. (This was suboptimal.)

    Liquid Metal is one of the coolest inventions in the last 100 years. I hope they can get the production speed up to something useful. (I would be willing to bet, production speed is the reason Apple has not used them for anything significant yet.)
  25. macrumors 6502a

    So, the only opportunity to innovate is by following Apples footsteps exactly?

    The opportunity for innovation, if anything, increases. Because now competitors will have to innovate THEMSELVES if they want to truly compete with Apples industrial design. That kind of pressure is what causes creative sparks within creative individuals. And if they truly think the only way to innovate and compete is by copying Apples material and fabrication process, then that is the exact opposite of innovation.

    Every other company had the exact same opportunity as Apple to spot the potential with this alloy and put it to good use.

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