iPhone 6 display won’t be pure sapphire glass, but rather a blend

You can tell we're inside two months away from the iPhone 6 launch now, as the rumours are starting to come thick and fast (well, thicker and faster), with the latest titbit concerning the smartphone's screen.

Previously we've been told that the iPhone 6 is going to boast sapphire glass, and indeed tech reviewer Marques Brownlee was sent a sample of the display, which he tested with keys and a craft knife for its toughness and scratch-proof nature, and it came off looking very hardy indeed.

However, that was two weeks ago, and a new test by Brownlee has cast doubt on the screen's ultra-tough resilience levels (see the video above). The reviewer used two different types of sandpaper (garnet sandpaper and emery) on the iPhone 6 (4.7in) screen and an iPhone 5S screen – and both were damaged. Admittedly, the next-gen iPhone still held up better, but the results are something of a disappointment compared to the earlier knife and keys test. The sapphire fingerprint sensor on the 5S remained untroubled by the sandpaper.

Brownlee reckons that rather than a pure Sapphire display, Apple may actually be using a blend of sapphire and traditional glass. That would make sense in terms of cost effectiveness – you're still getting a much tougher screen, but Cupertino is keeping that ever-important cost of manufacturing down.

And Professor Neil Alford of the department of materials at Imperial College London, who spoke to the Guardian (and has previously been consulted by Apple), agrees with this assessment. He noted: "Apple has patents for both sapphire lamination – taking two different cuts of sapphire to induce strain and increase its resilience – and for fusing quartz or silica (glass) to sapphire. So they could certainly do that."

So a blend it would appear to be. Apple will also apparently be shooting for not only a tough phone, but a super-thin one according to the latest rumour. The iPhone 6 is also expected to have NFC and wireless charging capabilities, along with a 13 megapixel camera.

For a full roundup of all the latest rumours and updates on the iPhone 6, check out our rolling live coverage.