Tips for Choosing the Right Smartphone Screen for You
Compared to other hardware components and processors, the smartphone screen is the most important component as we use and operate it all the time. Here are some things to consider when choosing the right smartphone screen for you.
The first thing to consider is the screen size because it is related to the use of the smartphone itself. The size of a smartphone screen is usually measured diagonally in inches.
If you want a practical and easy-to-carry smartphone, choose a screen size under 4.5 inches. If you want to enjoy playing games or watching videos, choose a screen that is larger than 4.5 inches. Smartphones with screens between 5.5 to 6.5 inches are also called phablets.
The type of smartphone screen is the next thing to consider because each type of screen has different characteristics. Here are some types of screen technology that are commonly used on smartphones today:
TFT LCD is the most widely used type of screen on smartphones today. TFT LCD stands for Thin Film Transistor Liquid Crystal Display and is the basic technology of all LCD screens. This type of smartphone screen is usually thick and requires a lot of power because it needs a light source to operate.
The characteristics of this screen vary depending on its quality and price. Cheap smartphones usually only use TFT LCD screens that have narrow viewing angles and poor color display. Expensive smartphones usually use screens with excellent quality.
Short for inline plane switching, IPS LCD is one type of smartphone screen that is capable of displaying high-quality resolution with wide viewing angles up to 170 degrees. IPS screens usually have better quality than TFT LCD screens on mid-range and budget smartphones.
IPS LCD has several types, one of which is PLS (Plain Line Switching) which is a Samsung-made LCD panel. Currently, almost all mid-range to high-end smartphones use this type of IPS LCD screen.
Super LCD (SLCD)
Another type of smartphone screen that uses an LCD panel is Super LCD, which is widely used on HTC smartphones. Unlike other types of LCD screens, this screen does not have air space between the outer and inner glass layers, which can reduce light reflection.
Therefore, the Super LCD screen is suitable for use in outdoor spaces that have high light intensity. In addition, the power consumption of this screen is also lower than that of regular LCD screens.
AMOLED is a smartphone screen based on OLED technology that was quite popular before the emergence of IPS LCD. This screen is thinner than LCD screens and does not require a special light source, making it more power-efficient when displaying black colors. Unfortunately, the images displayed on this screen are usually less sharp compared to LCDs.
In addition, AMOLED screens are also quite expensive because they are not produced as much as LCD screens. Currently, there are many variants of this screen, such as Super AMOLED, Super AMOLED Plus HD, and others that have a sharpness approaching that of LCD screens.
IGZO, short for indium gallium zinc oxide, is one of the latest types of smartphone screens available today. This screen is touted as a screen for the future of smartphones because it is capable of producing high resolution with high pixel density while still consuming low power.
Several high-end smartphones have already started implementing the use of this screen, such as the Aquos series from Sharp and the Apple iPad Air. In the next few years, this type of screen is believed to be widely used by various flagship smartphones.
Resolution and PPI
In addition to the type, one of the most important things to consider when having a smartphone screen is its resolution. This is because the resolution of a screen will affect the display quality and image sharpness it presents. Currently, there are various resolutions used on smartphones, ranging from QVGA (320 x 420 pixels) to UltraHD 4K (3840 x 2160 pixels).
Theoretically, the more pixels there are, the sharper the image displayed. For example, a 4-inch screen with HD resolution (720 x 1280) will display sharper images than a 5-inch screen with a similar resolution. Although there is no standard size, a pixel density of 200 PPI (pixels per inch) is considered the minimum limit for a screen to be able to display images well.
Therefore, if you want to get a smartphone screen with a comfortable viewing experience, make sure the resolution is at least above that number. Because no matter how good the screen technology it uses, if the resolution is low, the quality of the displayed image will not be too good.
One of the most vulnerable defects that can occur on a touch screen is scratches. Therefore, various new smartphones now coat their screens with special protective materials so that you no longer need to buy additional anti-scratch layers. The function of this protective layer varies, some protect against scratches and some protect against impact with sharp objects.
Oleophobic Coating is a layer that protects the screen from scratches or dirt such as oil and dust. Some old smartphones usually use this coating, such as the Samsung Galaxy Nexus I9250, the Samsung Google Nexus S, and the Sony Xperia Tablet S.
Scratch-resistant glass is a layer that protects the smartphone screen from light scratches in daily use. This protective layer is usually used on Sony smartphones such as Sony Ericsson Live with Walkman, Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo, Sony Xperia M, and others.
Corning Gorilla Glass
Gorilla Glass is a protective layer made by a glass manufacturing company called Corning. This protective technology is currently the most popular because it not only protects against scratches but also protects the screen when the smartphone falls. Gorilla Glass is thin so it does not reduce the sensitivity of a screen.
Gorilla Glass is also called an environmentally friendly technology because it is not made of hazardous heavy metals. The latest version of this protective layer is Gorilla Glass 3, which is widely used by high-end flagship smartphones.