Monday, May 28, 2012

LG's new display panel surpasses iPhone 4S' retina display in ppi

Apple's iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S boast of 326 ppi (pixels per inch), which translates to Apple's "retina display" (which some have debunked). Assuming that 326 ppi is a retina display, what of LG's new display panel, which boasts 440 ppi on a 5-inch screen?

Well, even that fails the test of display expert Dr. Raymond Soneira, who runs DisplayMate Technologies, which makes software to test display quality. In 2010, when the iPhone 4S was introduced, he said a display would need to have a pixel density of 477 ppi to be a "retina display" at 12 inches of viewing. He called Apple's claim "marketing puffery," not fact.

Given that, the best that can be said about the LG display is that it's considerably closer to the truth than the iPhone 4 or 4S screen. Of course, recent rumors have indicated that the iPhone 5 will sport a 5-inch screen, measured diagonally, with a different aspect ratio sure to make developers tear out their hair.

The new LG 5-inch display will have a 16:9 aspect ratio, perfect for viewing HD video, along with a 1920x1080 resolution. The display uses AH-IPS (Advanced High Performance In-Plane Switching) technology, which provides wider viewing angles, an improved color palette, and faster touch-response times, the company added.

Of course, a 5-inch screen is really big. For us, something between 4- and 4.5-inches appears to be the sweet spot for a smartphone, at least. The Samsung Galaxy S III, the next so-called Android superphone, will have a 4.8-inch screen.

Aside from size, the "big" question, of course, is when. LG said that the new screen will be released in the second half of 2012. It will also be on display, starting on June 4, at the SID 2012 Display Week trade show in Boston.

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