Gorilla Glass is the registered trademark for a toughened glass, manufactured by U.S. glassmaker Corning, Inc.
It became highly popular as a cover glass for portable electronic devices such as high-end mobile phones.
The manufacturer claims that Gorilla Glass offers high scratch resistance and incredible hardness, which allows the use of thinner glass panels on devices, without the inherent fragility, which traditionally comes with thinner thickness.
The invention for manufacturing this sort of protective glass had supposedly been gathering dust for quite some years in Corning's warehouse, until Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO back then, commissioned Corning to develop a new scratch proof display cover glass for the first iPhone.
The rise of touchscreen phones popularity since then has turned the manufacturing of Gorilla Glass into a lucrative business niche for Corning.
In 2012, Corning introduced a second generation of the material, called "Gorilla Glass 2" and devices using it started shipping in the first half the same year. According to the manufacturer, the advantages of the second generation include even thinner construction, higher transparency to light and allows for even better touch sensitivity.
Gorilla Glass 3 was announced in 2013 and the popular Samsung Galaxy S4 (released in the first half of the year) is announced as the first phone to feature it.
The new generation is marketed as having Native Damage Resistance™. Marketing talk aside, the new glass reportedly provides enhanced scratch resistance, reduced scratch visibility, and better retained strength once a scratch occurs. According to the manufacturer, the Gorilla Glass 3 is stronger, and is 3x more scratch-resistant than Gorilla Glass 2. Plus some 40% less scratches are visible once they occur.
Gorilla Glass 4 was announced at the end of 2014. With better damage resistance than its predecessor and the capability to made thinner while offering the same performance.
Gorilla Glass 5 was introduced in July 2016 while later that year in August Gorilla Glass SR+ was introduced for wearables.
Gorilla Glass 6 was introduced in July 2018. Corning’s scientists were able to engineer “an entirely new material” that would better survive multiple drops. Tests show that Gorilla Glass 6 survived fifteen drops from 1 meter before actually breaking. This is apparently twice as many drops that Gorilla Glass 5 can withstand.