It has been several years now that watchmakers exploring nonconventional materials for watch cases. Ceramic, ALUSIC, Zalium, Alacrite 602, Tantalum, etc... amongst others are some of the different options that can be found in more and more brands. The trend seems to be growing, and has been very successful in some cases, yet now it's time to turn to the base-plates. Renaud & Papi seem to be at the forefront of this. First with the high-end Richard Milles in "carbon nano-fiber" and recently this Jules Audemars from AP in "agate".
Wether the results are positive or negative time will tell. What is obvious is that the look of these little gems is really spectacular. Unfortunately at the moment the cost of machining such plates makes it exclusive to very expensive watches.