Samsung Forms Carbon Fiber Joint Venture; May Be Ditching Plastic for Future Devices

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    Samsung's smartphones have always pushed the envelope in both software and hardware innovation, but one valid complaint has always been their "Achilles Heel." That is their plastic casing. For the most part, Samsung fans ignore (or don't mind) the lower end plastic materials in their Samsung devices. Because Samsung packs so many quality software features and functions into their devices, it's easy to forgive them for cutting corners to keep the devices more affordable.

    Still, that doesn't mean that Samsung fans wouldn't appreciate a new material for their devices. There is a new report out of Samsung about a business deal which may portend exactly that. Samsung just formed a new Joint Venture with the SGL Group for composite Carbon Fiber materials. The primary reason Samsung has always used plastics in their devices is because they are light, durable and affordable. This new strategic partnership with the SGL Group could allow them to affordably upgrade the materials in their smartphones and tablets to something much more intriguing than plastic, yet still keep their devices light and durable.

    Of course, for now the idea of using Carbon Fiber in smartphones is just industry speculation, but that doesn't mean it won't turn out to be true. How does a new Carbon Fiber-built Samsung Galaxy S5 sound?

    Here's the full presser,


     
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  2. akhenax

    akhenax Silver Member

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    Motorola was on the right track with Carbon Fiber. I'm not sure if it was actually Carbon Fiber on their Droid Razr's but it did give a phone an attractive look.
     
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  3. Iggy08

    Iggy08 Member

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    It's was real, but it was kevlar. I assume kevlar is either a form of carbon fiber or related to it though because they look similar
     
  4. mountainbikermark

    mountainbikermark Super Moderator
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    Both are overkill for cellphone cases but carbon fiber will break upon impact faster than Kevlar BUT Kevlar will break down when exposed to direct sunlight faster than carbon fiber. Under normal conditions either will be much better than the current plastics used but neither is going to be perfect. In either case the phone will suffer internal damage from impact long before either case will fail.

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  5. Asgard

    Asgard Member

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    They are not the same, but they are slightly related.
    Kevlar is the material used in bulletproof vests, and it has a great tensile strength.
    Carbon fiber is the coating used for sports cars hoods, or other parts, it's flexible and lightweight.

    Personally I like kevlar better, because the phone can in theory stop a 9mm bullet (I've been tempted to shoot an arrow to the back cover of my galaxy nexus to prove it) but the carbon fiber would allow the phone to be lighter and it's more resistant against falls instead of piercing impacts like kevlar.
     
  6. dfcfu342

    dfcfu342 Member

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    I hate to burst your bubble but that thin layer of kevlar on your phone will not stop anything its just decoration like it is on Moto devices.
    I think carbon fiber will be pretty cool but it has the problem of not being very resilient and very inconsistent with impacts. There is no deformation or "give" in carbon fiber; it either survives unscathed or shatters into a million pieces there really isn't a middle ground. Crash a metal car and you can pound it back out straight enough to continue, crash a carbon fiber car and its useless junk.
     
  7. smalltowngirl13

    smalltowngirl13 Administrator
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    Lots of great Samsung news today :)...maybe they could showcase this on the Note 3 ;) since production may not start for a while...
     
  8. acousticshade

    acousticshade Active Member

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    Yup, same with bike frames. Carbon fiber is very lightweight, but crash a carbon bike and you are more than likely buying a whole new frame. Crash an aluminum frame & it can be fixed.

    +1 on the bullet/arrow thing also. The Kevlar needs multiple layers to be effective at even stopping small caliber weapons. Plus, it is ruined once you shoot it and the force would still be transferred to the phones internal parts.
     
  9. TatDroid

    TatDroid Active Member

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    I'm a little surprised to see the reference to "lower end plastic materials" in the first paragraph. There certainly lots of lower end plastics out there, but I'm not sure I would classify poly carbonate (the type of plastic Samsung uses on their flagship phones) as a "lower end plastic". As has been discussed many, many times in many, many discussion forums, poly carbonate is used for such things as: Bulletproof glass, Jet canopies, Riot shields, and Safety goggles. It is a lightweight and extremely durable material that allows for extreme deformation without cracking or breaking.

    Samsung's problem here is one of perception: Plastic is perceived by the masses (and by vocal Samsung haters) as cheap. And for this they are forced to make a change to a material that is perceived as being of higher quality. There are a slew of available alternatives. There are all different types of metals and high tech man made materials. All of them have advantages and disadvantages. Every single one of them will be either: Heavier, Less Durable, or More Expensive than poly carbonate (maybe ALL THREE!)

    But the detractors won't be able to call Samsung phones "cheap plastic" anymore.
     
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  10. Asgard

    Asgard Member

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    Yeah, I know the kevlar on the back of my phone is just the top layer, that's why I haven't shoot the arrow at it yet, also the mere impact would mess with the phone so I plan to do it only on the cover without the rest of the phone and with a round tipped arrow.

    Regarding the crash or a bike or a car, it only gets destroyed if you go beyond the elastic deformation region, if the impact is below that, it would go back to the way it was and you wouldn't notice.
    So for a phone, this might mean that dropping it from 5' wouldn't damage it, but if you go higher than that, say goodbye to it. It might be interesting to see how this comes out.
     
  11. Narsil

    Narsil Silver Member

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