So anyone who is concerned about cleanliness will breathe a sigh of relief at the news that smartphones and tablets are about to become a great deal more hygienic.
The US maker of Gorilla Glass - the scratch-resistant material used on many touchscreen gadgets, including those sold by Apple and Samsung - has come up with an anti-microbial version made with silver molecules. The surface is embedded with silver particles, which have anti-bacterial properties.
These new screens are designed to eliminate 99.9 percent of bugs, and also inhibit the development of algae and mould.
Thousands of bacteria live on the mobile device, though it is not thought that they pose much of a threat to users.
"Touchscreens are a source of microbes, but not much of an issue if you do not share them with other people - since, if you are the only one using it, it's only your germs," says Professor
Gorilla Glass generates more than
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