Does the iPad 3 really need to go 2048x1536?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by sportsfrk214, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. sportsfrk214, Feb 8, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2012

    sportsfrk214 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 18, 2007
    I believe that the iPad 3 will have a higher resolution screen than the iPad 2. However the main argument against the screen resolution increasing to anything but 2048x1536 is that old apps won't scale properly. But I'm wondering why this is such an issue?

    Why should Apple care? So if old apps wont scale properly, then leave a couple rows of black pixels on either the top or the sides of old apps. If the old app doesn't match the new screen resolution perfectly, then just leave empty space there. This would be no different than when you try to run an iPhone app in 2x mode on the iPad. Developers will update their apps, or risk getting left behind. I don't have a single non-Retina app on my iPhone because any app that wasn't updated, I replaced it with one that was. I think people would do the same with iPad apps. And who cares if empty space looks bad? So do apps with non-Retina graphics. Developers can update graphics and support for the new resolution all in one move.

    I understand this wouldn't be ideal for developers, because they would have to code for two different resolutions that aren't 100% scalable, unlike if the iPad 3 was exactly double the resolution. But again, were talking about a few pixels here and there on the edges - developers code for endless Android resolutions, is it so much to ask them to do just 2 for the iPad? Especially considering that in a couple years, they'll only have to code for 1 as the iPad 2 becomes obsolete and they're only writing apps for high-resolution iPads. Whatever resolution Apple makes the iPad 3, you can be sure that'll be the resolution of many generations of iPads to come.

    I know many say Apple doesn't want to alienate developers but that didn't stop them from not putting an optical drive on Macbook Airs, or stop them from not using USB ports on iPhones and iPads. If developers only want to code for 1 resolution, that can be their decision (and they can take their own risk on losing some profits).

    In fact, this argument makes so much sense to me that it makes too much sense. There must be some technical aspect about resolution that I'm missing. Someone tell me where I've gone astray.

    Edit: I write this only because I wonder whether a resolution that high is good. I wonder how good movies could look on a device with a resolution that high.
  2. Menel macrumors 603


    Aug 4, 2011
  3. Eric8199 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2009
    Not going to happen. It's a huge pain for developers, and they are what made iOS so popular.

    As for android, my understanding is that Android has resolution independence, so the apps work on all sizes, and developers don't have to code for all sizes.

    Now, that being said, Apple could have a trick up their sleeve to make it work, but that trick won't be making developers develop for another resolution and risk leaving iPad 2 behind too quickly.

    Finally, I never get the argument that things in lower resolution will look bad at higher resolution (ie movies). They will look at worst the same they do now, as the screen size doesn't change, only the pixel density. That makes higher res images look better, but images the same res as now won't look worse.

    Maybe I don't understand the technical side of it, but I wouldn't see there being a difference.
  4. kepner macrumors 6502

    Sep 7, 2003
  5. psonice macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2005
    They could in theory increase it by 50% instead of 100%. In practice it would be a mess.

    If they just scale up by 50%: you get ugly graphics. A diagonal line scaled up by 2x looks either smooth but blurry, or smoothly stepped. A diagonal line scaled up by 1.5x looks jagged.

    If they show it at actual size, with a black border: Start sharpening your fingers, because all of the buttons just shrunk and are now way too small. This doesn't happen with iPhone apps on the iPad because you're either showing them iphone-sized or 2x bigger. Big buttons are ugly and a bit pointless, tiny buttons are unusable.
  6. stordoff macrumors regular

    Aug 24, 2009
    Most movies will already be scaled to fit the screen resolution, so it will not make that much of a difference. Providing that the physical size remains the same, I suspect you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between the two on movies.
  7. GekkePrutser macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2005
    That's so un-Apple... They're all about perfection, leaving rows of pixels blank is just not something they'd do. Read Steve Jobs' biography, and you'll see. He'd never stand for it (and I'm sure he was still heavily involved in the iPad 3 project).

    The iPhone app mode is only meant as a little 'extra', especially for when the iPad just came out and apps weren't plentiful. It wasn't meant as a core feature and it was never possible to run it 100% full-screen because the iPhone screen has a different aspect ratio. I wouldn't be surprised if they'd drop that feature altogether because it's hardly needed now. But I suppose they'll keep it around for those that use it. I think the fact that it still doesn't support retina apps shows how little Apple cares about the feature.

    I know at the moment 2048x1536 will be a huge resolution for the next iPad, but very soon this technology will be mainstream and their production costs will drop significantly. Aiming high and then sticking with it for a good while is also what Apple does.

    So I do personally expect a 2048x1536.
  8. spiderman0616 macrumors 68040


    Aug 1, 2010
    Anytime anyone ever asks this, I think about when I bought my iPhone 4. I was Mr. Apple Hater about 3 years ago--didn't want anything to do with the iPhone, Macs, iPads, none of it. But I went into AT&T one day meaning to look for a new smartphone and saw that iPhone 4 on display. One look at the screen and I was sold. I couldn't believe the difference in resolution between the iPhone 3GS and the iPhone 4. The screen looked like a printed color page in a magazine. (It still amazes me to this day.)

    Then I think about when I got my iPad 2. It has a really nice vibrant screen and is capable of some awesome looking graphical displays, but it has nothing on the iPhone's retina display. I read on my iPad a lot (or used to before I sold it), and I am super psyched to use iBooks, Wired Magazine, or The Daily on a 9.7" hi def screen.

    So Apple, please announce this thing and take my money.
  9. Reason077 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2007
    Exactly. This is precisely why many Android apps look so s-h-*-t ... bad scaling of bitmaps.
  10. psonice macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2005
    Oh, and about the android "resolution independence": it's basically the same as the iPhone. The OS will draw standard stuff like buttons correctly at the right size, but for everything else where you use graphics you have to supply different sized bitmaps. On the iPhone you need 2 sets, for the 3GS and earlier and for retina models. On android I believe it's 3 sets so far, but that would increase to 4 (or more) if they started selling even higher res devices. Even then, if your device is "between" those graphics, it either has to scale them and you get ugliness or the buttons end up a bit too small or large.
  11. Tiitu macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2007
    A3-sized display for iPad 3


    I very much liked to have an A3-sized display on the iPad 3! So, please, make both A4 and A3 versions. :p

  12. WestonHarvey1 macrumors 68020

    Jan 9, 2007
    2048x1536 is a slam dunk.

    There's nothing simple at all about forcing yet another aspect ratio onto developers.

    The system Apple has now is the right one: A single aspect ratio per device category. iPhone and iPod touch in one, iPads in the other, and someday, hopefully soon, Apple TV as a third category.

    Any category can support multiple resolutions as long as they are the same aspect ratio. Old apps work exactly the same on a new device, except for the lower apparent resolution.

    The "2x" thing between iPhone and iPad is a fine compromise considering you're running an app from one device category on another, but to have that within the same category would be extremely... well... lame.
  13. sportsfrk214 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Sep 18, 2007
    Thanks for some of the great replies, very enlightening stuff. Don't get me wrong, I'd absolutely love a 2048x1536 screen, I was just wondering it was something they had to do or if they had a choice. I see now there's really only one option for them. Can't wait to get my hands on it :)
  14. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    Is an iPad 3 with retina screen really needed?

    After seeing this Gizmodo post, it's gotten me thinking: is the rumoured 2048x1536 retina screen really necessary? I mean I have the iPad 2 and it doesn't look bad at all. It could maybe use some clarity occasionally, but right now (as in this year) going to a resolution bigger than a full HD 1080p blu-ray on a tablet doesn't really seem to have a point besides just being a really cool selling point. Maybe in the future, yes. But right now? Not really. (unless someone else has a reason I haven't thought of that makes it practical)

    Attached Files:

  15. realitycheck69 macrumors member

    Sep 24, 2011
    What's the purpose of this thread? Better is better.
  16. Fuchal macrumors 68020

    Sep 30, 2003
  17. pmau macrumors 65816

    Nov 9, 2010
    You prove a point

    Customers don't know what they want until they see it.
    Nobody "wanted" an iPod or another Laptop (MacBookPro).

    Now "iPod" and "MacBook" are real trademarks and not just MP3 players or Laptops. Apple does not build MP3 Players, they build iPods.
  18. Virgo macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    The clearer, the better. Less eye strain. More aesthetically pleasing. Seems like a natural progression.
  19. Agent-P macrumors 68030


    Dec 5, 2009
    The Tri-State Area
    I understand the point of progress to make things more comfortable to look at, but this big of a jump right now just seems like overkill. A slight pixel count increase would accomplish the same thing without being completely ridiculous.
  20. roofz macrumors regular

    Jan 23, 2012
    Southern California
    Apple is going to incorporate Retina into the iPad 3 and the macbook lines as well. It's inevitable
  21. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Feb 6, 2009
    Why not go to 2048x1536? If they can be produced in mass for a resonable cost and high quality why not go to that resolution?

    Movies and images will scale just fine.

    Games will probably look fine scaled from current resolution. If the iPad gets a 2048x1536 screen then it will probably get an upgraded GPU to match.

    Text is usually what looks the worst when simply stretching it, but almost all text you see is drawn by the OS so it can be scaled correctly and will look great if the iPhone retina display is anything to go by.

    Apps will be acceptable when upscaled, and will be easy for devs to update. In fact most serious iOS devs probably produced all of their artwork at double dpi for the iPad to begin with since they already did the same with their iPhone apps.

    Sure a middle ground resolution would probably work out alright, but why not go all the way to 2048x1536 if you can? If the technical details of manufacturing can be worked out then I don't really see any cons.
  22. MythicFrost macrumors 68040


    Mar 11, 2009
    There's no point doing a slight increase in resolution on the iPad, as that brings little gain and a lot of pain, and at the point you're increasing the resolution by a significant amount, why not do it by 2048x1536 and have a seamless transition?

    It won't just be a couple of rows of black pixels, if you're looking at even 1600x1200, the actual app would only be about a third the size of the entire screen, which is not only awkward to use, but impossible to read.

    Apple doesn't need to go Androids route of supporting multiple resolutions because iOS only runs on iDevices, Apple thought out and chose these resolutions because they're ideal, and there's no need to change them except to increase PPI.
  23. kobyh15 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 29, 2011
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

  24. Akack macrumors 6502a

    Mar 5, 2011
    Does the iPad 3 really need to go 2048x1536? Oh fo sho!!
  25. seong macrumors 65816


    Feb 11, 2010
    I do hope that in the coming few years, every electronic device with a screen will have a retina display, so that I don't have to feel like my eyes are spoiled!

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