Aside from the iPhone 3G's SIM card eject tool, nothing has really come out of the agreement Apple signed with Liquidmetal Technologies back in 2010.

But rumours of a Liquidmetal iPhone 6 have been bubbling for a while and a bevvy of newly-published patents that add credence to the speculation.

While many aren't assigned to Apple directly, the inventors mentioned are Apple employees - ones MacRumours notes have been tied to Apple's work with Liquidmetal in the past.

Powerful alloys

So why is this good news? Liquidmetal alloys will mean higher strength and resistance for hardware like the notoriously short-lived home buttons on iPads and iPhones.

Another use is to improve the accuracy of touch touch sensors on iOS devices.

Apple's also been granted a patent for a flexible wraparound display, made using a powder Liquidmetal process, however we expect this one might not show up until the iPhone 7.