iPhone X Eye-strain while using iPhone X

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Kitkad, Nov 6, 2017.

?

Are you experiencing this issue?

  1. Yes

    43.5%
  2. No

    56.5%
  1. timeconsumer macrumors 68000

    timeconsumer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Portland
    #2451
    I've also been using the iPhone XR for over a month now and it's fine for me in terms of PWM. I definitely agree with you on the weight/size. The XR introduced a new issue for me, my thumbs are sore due to the "swipe up" gesture. So, I'm really going to need to be looking at a new device as this one isn't going to work long term for me. However, it seems like currently for those of us who have PWM issues, there really aren't good options out there unless we want older devices.
     
  2. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040

    MICHAELSD

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #2452
    I tried the XR for a minute or two and it seemed okay. Under the store lighting color and contrast appeared better than my 8+, and the difference in resolution didn’t seem too noticeable. I ordered a XR that should arrive tomorrow so I’ll do further testing/comparisons. I really hope I like it more than my 8+ since I don’t want to have to return it if it doesn’t bother my eyes like the X did.

    It’s a shame because I’d rather own the XS Max and not have to compromise on any features coming from an 8+ but the PWM frequency appears to be the same on the Max. XR would have been perfect if it matched the X’s PPI, the screen seems nice but it’s still a major compromise not being able to natively watch 1080p so I’m hoping the improved contrast over the 8+ makes up for the loss in resolution. Already having some buyer’s remorse over the XR mostly due to its resolution but I don’t want this to be the first year I skip an upgrade so I’ll give it a chance.
     
  3. spencermfi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #2453
    No, as I wrote no eye strain with XR at all.
     
  4. kerplunknet, Dec 20, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2018

    kerplunknet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    #2454
    I have gone through many different cases with the XR and was noticing the thumb strain as well. I finally decided on this case: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07GHTJKFX/

    Here is the review I left on Amazon:

    Pros:
    - Protects against scratches (including camera)
    - Almost feels like you're not using a case at all
    - Doesn't add noticeable weight
    - Phone is less slippery than with no case
    - Easy install
    - Material feels like it's good quality
    - Holes perfectly lineup; also, it makes the side buttons completely flush so they don't protrude, but they are still completely functional

    Cons:
    - Won't protect very well against drops

    If you are relatively careful with your iPhone XR and don't want the additional size and weight of most cases, this is for you.
     
  5. daviddcmd macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #2455
    This!! I had to return an Xs Max and an Xs due to this. My fear is future flagship phones from Apple are out for me.

    Also I bought a Note 9 with an OLED screen and I don't have eye strain. How did Samsung manage to make one.
     
  6. W.MlL macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2018
    #2456
    You are comparing the X to what? What other phone have you used under similar conditions for the same length of time and not experienced this eye strain? By chance was it a "TouchID" phone that had the "Display Zoom" setting set to "Zoomed"? The iPhone X versions do not have Zoomed view which means the text and icons are all displayed at smaller font. For me this can cause eye problems.
     
  7. I7guy macrumors P6

    I7guy

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Gotta be in it to win it
    #2457
    There was a blog posted here (ifixit I think) as a video comparing pwm in Samsung phones to oled. The conclusion was apple manages pwm better and has a tip for eliminating pwm from apple phones. Samsung phones gave me a headache. I don’t feel the same eye strain from the max.
     
  8. daviddcmd macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    #2458
    Obviously my experience is different than yours. When I was able to see the PWM flickering using another phone's camera it was much worse on the iphones than the Note 9. I might add I bought an XR and have experienced no eye stain.
     
  9. I7guy macrumors P6

    I7guy

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Gotta be in it to win it
    #2459
    LCDs don't use PWM to control brightness. oled and lcd each have their pluses and minuses.
     
  10. user1234 macrumors 6502a

    user1234

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2009
    Location:
    Sweden
    #2460
    How bad it looks depends on the shutter speed used, and how in sync it is with the PWM frequency. In order to determine which is worse, the light output has to be measured with an oscilloscope and the curves have to be compared. If the frequency is known, the shutter speed can be set to bring the worst out of any PWM controlled display
     
  11. timeconsumer macrumors 68000

    timeconsumer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Portland
    #2461
    Actually, according to notebookcheck some LCD screens do use PWM to control the brightness.

    Here are some examples:

    LG G7 uses PWM at 42% and below.
    https://www.notebookcheck.net/LG-G7-ThinQ-Smartphone-Review.308990.0.html

    Razer Phone 2 uses PWM at 20% and below.
    https://www.notebookcheck.net/Razer-Phone-2-Smartphone-Review.372536.0.html

    HTC U12 Plus uses PWM at 50% and below.
    https://www.notebookcheck.net/HTC-U12-Plus-Smartphone-Review.306394.0.html
     
  12. W.MlL macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2018
    #2462
    The Sony branded OLED TV XBR-A1E doesn't use PWM.
     
  13. I7guy macrumors P6

    I7guy

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Gotta be in it to win it
    #2463
    There may be a difference in the design of an oled screen for tv and mobile phone.
     
  14. W.MlL macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2018
    #2464
    I looked into this PWM on OLED some more.

    OLED is highly susceptible to image retention (burn-in). On a TV, image retention can be prevented through various techniques (e.g., pixel shift) coupled with the fact that home-theater TVs generally aren't displaying static images constantly.

    With smartphones though constant images are displayed statically and I don't think techniques like pixel shift are available. So PWM must be used to prevent burn-in. To me it seems that OLED is a poor choice of display technology for smart-phone screens. It is very expensive to manufacture and requires PWM. I'm a huge OLED fan on TV but I don't think it makes good sense putting it on a smartphone with its limitations.
     
  15. I7guy macrumors P6

    I7guy

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Gotta be in it to win it
    #2465
    Someone posted a link to a test done by a website and it showed oled burn-in will occur on the Xs and max after 510 hours of displaying a static image. Maybe it’s pwm or pixel shifting, but burn-in or image retention doesn’t seem to be a factor on Apple oled displays.
     
  16. newellj macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #2466
    Well, that certainly sinks it. I mean, I leave my phone display on for 500 hours or more all the time!
     
  17. saffet macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2018
    #2467
    Dear All,

    I have been using Iphone XS Max for four days and I have signed up this forum for the issue I experience.

    I am happy that I am not the only one and the problem is a "problem" actually.

    I have used and am still using countless screens and light sources throughout my daily routine and never ever had such a problem.

    Obviously when you work, game, read etc. too much your eyes get tired. However this phone's experience was something totally different. It is more than simple eye strain. It is a combination of slight headache and dizziness around your forehead. It does not go away as soon as you leave the phone.

    I am not sure if the aforementioned PWM or Face ID is the root issue but I'm done with harming my eyes and head. I will not do any more experiments. Yesterday I switched back to my fellow XZ1.

    I think this is a big issue and will likely intensify as more users jump in X or XS (Max) train.
     
  18. BigBen2493 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2016
    #2468
    PWM is my guess
     
  19. BigBen2493 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2016
    #2469
    I took a Slow motion vid of the iphone XS at the apple store and I saw the flicker
     
  20. saffet macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2018
    #2470
    Just dim the phone back light and point another camera on the phone white background. Flickering is huge.

    There is no flicker with my old, fellow LCD screen Xperia. Also checked XR and no flicker as well.

    I think this is a major problem and should be stated as a health and safety disclaimer/warning on OLED displays with PWM.
     
  21. BigBen2493 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 10, 2016
  22. Zenithal macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    #2472
    Did Apple do away with the blue light dimmer in iOS? My S9 comes with a built in blue light filter so I can use my phone in complete darkness without pain.
     
  23. Deifie macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2016
  24. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040

    MICHAELSD

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #2474
    I think it would benefit every single iPhone owner if they were to get rid of PWM entirely on the next-generation iPhone since it would lead to less eye strain and headaches for all, even those who aren’t explicitly sensitive to it.

    An alternative would be to release an option in Accessibility since otherwise they are isolating a significant amount of people who aren’t able to use the phones at all due to their implementation of PWM.

    iPhone XR is a nice phone but for me it presented compromises to the modern iPhone experience I’ve been used to for the past few years, and I’d rather wait until this is addressed on the flagship models rather than settle for the XR which felt like a step down from the X. So regrettably I’ll hold onto the 8+ (even though I’d still rather use a XS) until there’s a flicker-free model that can replace it.
     
  25. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040

    MICHAELSD

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #2475
    I do think I could have demonstrated the pulse-width modulation flicker better on video as it does make a lot of sense why it could cause so many issues for a select number of sensitive users. Looking at an iPhone X/XS in slow-motion shows why it’s such a literal headache. If a friend shows me their iPhone X/XS for even a second it causes me terrible headaches, and I haven’t ever had any issues with any other devices that use PWM but the curve/amplitude/frequency varies widely by device.

    The specific implementation of PWM on iPhone X/XS is problematic.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 11, 2019 ---
    I’ve been doing more research and dimming without pulse-width modulation wouldn’t negatively affect the lifetime of the display. If they can get the white point to remain stable and colors/gradients to look consistent at various brightness levels without PWM, then there would be absolutely no drawbacks.

    A company like Apple should be able to develop an OLED display that doesn’t utilize PWM (it can be forgiven if they implement it at very low brightness levels). The benefits greatly outweigh the cons. I’m surprised they released iPhone X in the state they did.
     

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