Maybe TFA is bad at conveying what they're doing then, because the impression I got from it was "we have a way to electroplate multiple metals selectively by adjusting the voltage. Doing this enough times can make the bulk material much stronger." If laying down a plating layer nanometers thick is now "manipulating materials on a molecular level", then I can do that in my kitchen with less than $100 in equipment. I believe the thickness of the plating I typically lay down in a single pass is on the scale of four or five atoms, but I make hundreds of small passes, stop, clean, and make hundreds more. If I tank plate rather than brush plate, I don't have as much control, but it could still be done if I had an assistant (robot) to move the parts around for me.
Even if I grant both possibilities in full, how does this make them integral to each other? They could electroplate thousands of thin layers before, it just required moving parts between vats. This is obviously impractical from a human labor perspective, but it may not be substantial at all with machine labor, so it seems they have reduced a cost. They haven't solved a fundamental problem. Would you care to explain, with citations from TFA, how exactly I am clueless?
I know perfectly well how the metal ions deplete from the solution, changing the voltage and time required to get an effective coat. Once they drop below a certain level, it just stops working and throwing more power at it doesn't help. The mixture of solutes would have to be carefully monitored and controlled to prevent this from becoming an issue, at which point it seems simpler to me to use one bath per metal. You can recharge the solutions on a pretty regular basis that way, and not have to do much monitoring at all. You can step up voltage (to a point) to accommodate a weaker solution, without fearing that you're going to attract a different metal. Possibly most important for economy of scale, you can more easily recover the residuals of the spent solution for reprocessing if they haven't all been mixed together.