All iPads Future of retina: 326 ppi density across all models?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by benji888, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. benji888 macrumors 65816

    benji888

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    #1
    Anyone else notice that the iPad Mini w/retina display has a density of 326 ppi...same as iPhone retina screen? (Apple also is using same screen tech from iPhone 3GS for non-retina iPad mini...same pixel density). With rumors of higher screen density for next year's iPad, I'm thinking they will change the 10" iPads to 326 ppi also? Would that be too difficult/cause too much "fragmentation"? I mean, the iPad mini doesn't create fragmentation in that the actual full resolution of the screens match other iPads, but, because the screen is smaller, the pixel density is tighter. So, for Apple to improve the display, wouldn't this be the move they'd make?
     
  2. VanillaCracker macrumors 68030

    VanillaCracker

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    #2
    It's a coincidence. They won't change the iPad Air's resolution within the next couple years. PPI doesn't create fragmentation, changing the resolution does. Apple avoided fragmentation by putting in the same resolution as the full-sized iPad Air. It happens to have a higher PPI because it is the same resolution in a smaller screen. What will likely cause a bit of fragmentation is the 12" iPad that will be coming out next year.
     
  3. Ohrstrom macrumors 6502

    Ohrstrom

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    #3
    please explain fragmentation to me, the dummy in "Fragmentation for Dummies". :p
     
  4. Peter K., Oct 23, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2013

    Peter K. macrumors 6502a

    Peter K.

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    #4
    IMO, 326 PPI will no longer be the maximum. The "iPad Pro" will need to be greater than the 264 PPI of the Air, because the Pro is a higher product line. Also, the iPhone 6 will need to be higher than them all, as the distance from face is:

    1. iPhone 6 ("Retina+", > 326 PPI)
    2. iPad mini with Retina Display (326 PPI)
    3. iPad Pro 9.7" (264 PPI < "Retina" < 326 PPI
    4. iPad Air 9.7" (264 PPI)
    5. iPad Pro 11.5" (264 PPI > "Retina")
     
  5. VanillaCracker macrumors 68030

    VanillaCracker

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    #5
    I am not really qualified to explain it properly but I will try. I don't consider myself any more knowledgeable about the subject than an average person. The best way to describe resolution in my mind is to say that it is the amount of "lines" of pixels (rows and columns) the display has. For instance, looking at text on the iPad Mini Gen. 1 (1024x768 resolution) you are looking at the number "1" on a webpage (zoomed out all the way - so the font is small). There might be, let's say, 12 rows of pixels making up the number. Whereas on the iPad Mini retina (2048x1536 resolution) would have 24 pixels for that same number, zoomed out just as much. That simply means that it is sharper looking than the lower resolution screen, across every aspect of the display - because there are more lines and pixels.

    PPI is pixels per inch. This is how dense the pixel count of the screen is. The higher the PPI the sharper the screen looks as well. I believe the reason for this is because the pixels are smaller, in order to cover the same resolution, so because they are smaller (since the screen is smaller) but still need to cover the same resolution, each area of the screen (per inch - as it's called) is more dense/covered in more pixels, which in turn makes it look sharper.

    Generally speaking, the bigger the screen, the smaller the PPI. If you were to have a 1080p screen, on a 18" Computer monitor, it would only be around ~140 PPI (complete estimate) whereas on phones like the HTC One and Galaxy S 4, they are 5" screens with a 1080p display. That means they are over 400 PPI, which means they are incredibly sharp.

    Oh whoops I just realized your question was about fragmentation :D. Well fragmentation in this topic relates only to resolution, PPI has nothing to do with it. In order to make apps, they need to be made for a certain resolution (how much real estate the screen has) - because you don't want to have an app that isn't optimized for a certain resolution, and have the edge of the app cut off! Apple has been smart about keeping fragmentation to a minimum. They use Pixel doubling when they can, which basically means it keeps the same "screen real estate" while doubling the resolution. This keeps apps from needing to be optimized to multiple devices. They did this with the mini also. The iPad mini retina is exactly double the resolution of the iPad mini, therefore no apps need to be optimized. They just need to be tweaked easily to double the resolution (which happened when the iPad 3 came out - as the full-sized iPad and Mini retina now have the same resolution).

    Apple iOS lineup only has 4 resolutions. (3 if you ignore the iPhone 4/4S). The iPhone 5/5S, the iPad 2/Mini, and the iPad Mini Retina/Air.


    I don't think you understand how PPI works. Inherently, the bigger the screen, the lower the PPI. The 13" Retina MBP has a higher PPI than the 15", because the 15" is a bigger display. there is no "Pro" products. If apple releases a 12" iPad, it will have a higher resolution than the iPad Air, but likely still a lower PPI, because it is gaining 2" in size.
     
  6. yinz, Oct 24, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2013

    yinz macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Nailed it, but here's a PPI explanation for dummies.

    Let's say you had to fill your room, you would need 10 people (a basketball team). If you put this basketball team in a school, you'd have a lot of empty space. You'd need more people to fill the school. So as the space becomes bigger, your people per unit space becomes less dense.

    Let's say your target is to have the whole basketball team fit, then with a smaller room, you'd have a higher density. In a school, you wouldn't have enough people to reach your "retina" quality.

    Legend:
    Room/School - Monitor size
    People - Pixels
    Basketball Team - Target resolution (1920x1080?)

    Fragmentation is when your teams vary in number too greatly. Let's say the developers are trying to make a meeting room for all of your teams (basketball, band, soccer, swim team). The basketball team has 10 players, band has 50 people, soccer has 17 players and the swim team has 3 people. The meeting room has limited seating, and so the developer can only create the room for a few sized teams. You can't cater to the swim team because it's only 3 people. You can't cater to only the band, because then the swim team would not fill the room.

    Apple has created teams that share more similar numbers. iPad and iPad Mini have the same number of pixels. The iPhone and the iPod Touch have the same number of pixels. This makes it easy for the developers.
     
  7. tann macrumors 68000

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    #7
    I think the fact it's 326 like the iPhone is just a coincidence. They would have doubled the resolution even if the ppi turned out to only be 290 or 300, the fact it's over 300 is a big positive though.

    Next year I think we'll see the iPhone 6 take the iPhones PPI even higher than 326. At the moment high end Android phones have PPI's in excess of 400 in some cases, and Apple will increase the resolution (because they will increase the screen size) but the PPI will still go up.

    I'm excited to see what they officially do though! Only a year to go lol.
     
  8. Helmigurt macrumors member

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    #8
    Actually it's not a coincidence at all! Apple used the old lcd wafers from the iphone 3GS which has the exact same PPI then the iPad mini and just cut it to a bigger slate. Now they are doing the same with the retina iPad mini: They use the same wafers as the iPhone 4 - 5S does and just cut it differently. I safes them a lot of money. It is quite reasonable to think that in the midterm they use the same PPI on many or all of their products.
     
  9. BoredAtWork, Oct 24, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2013

    BoredAtWork macrumors newbie

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    #9
    Helmigurt hit the nail in the head!

    its not a coincidence, there was a reason why ipad mini was 7.9 inch in the first place. its the reuse of old panel production from pre-iphone4 era wafers cut into the 1024x768 production for the mini.

    Thats why when ipad mini came out, the retina version is already been mentioned by many. because the tech exist from iphone4 - iphone5s panels. just need to cut it into right size. The limiting factor was the CPU and battery to be efficient enough to run it .

    Furthermore, if I have to guess. The up coming ipad pro is said to be 11".
    I am quite positive that to be pro model, it will need to run some work related apps. as ipad fully satisfied the entertainment realm. Given that, I would assume it uses PC resolutions for some of the mac apps. Its like to be a device that can run both ios and osx (or osx lite version). To achieve "retina" status and PC resolution, 2560x1440 seems to be most logical.

    Now take current ipad panel and multiply it by 2560x1440 @263 ppi. what do you get? 11.2"
     
  10. VanillaCracker macrumors 68030

    VanillaCracker

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    #10
    Thank you for this!

    I think your size is a little off on the iPad - I read it was supposed to be 12" but this source says closer to 13" so it would change the resolution a bit too.

    http://www.macrumors.com/2013/10/09...n-on-apples-display-plans-for-future-devices/

    We'll see if it runs an OSX hybrid, it does seem interesting if it were to do so, but it also seems quite odd for next years market. My bet is against it! We're not quite in the tablet/pc hybrid era yet in my opinoin
     
  11. x-evil-x macrumors 68030

    x-evil-x

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    #11
    what would the ppi be if they increased the pixels 4x's again and put it in a 13" iPad?
    or at what size would 4x the pixels of the screen be?
     
  12. SHirsch999 macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    This won't be the dimensions since it is not 4:3 like all of the other iPads and would be narrower than the current ones. It would not surprise me at all if the iPad pro winds up being 2048x1536 like the current ones but at 163 ppi. I'm not sure what the diagonal size would be for that but it seems pretty big.
     
  13. TJ61 macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    And perhaps one other thing: yield. Now you need four adjacent panels-worth of area to be defect free.
     
  14. The Banana macrumors member

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    #14
    Well that would be twice as big as the iPad mini, meaing it would be 15,8 inches in diagonal.. That's waaaay too large if you ask me!
     
  15. benji888 thread starter macrumors 65816

    benji888

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    #15
    This is exactly what I was saying, just didn't word it all out, you explained it well, I guess I expected most to know this already.

    But, my point is, I know that changing the resolution is what causes fragmentation, however, how can you have a retina iPad Mini that looks better than the larger, more expensive iPad Air? Someone is trying to say that Apple will do what they do with MacBooks...iPad Air is less expensive, iPad Pro will have more processing power, better display, but, I don't see it that way at all. I see that Apple called it the iPad Air because, not only it's lightweight, but, ultimately iOS & OS X are slowly merging, in a year or two, the iPad Air will replace the MacBook Air and have a new keyboard dock available for it, come in 10" & 12" sizes (by then, A8 or A9 processor). MacBook Pros will remain for some time as the laptops with more power and connectivity. Also by 2015, iMacs will have touch screens, smaller screen for entry-level model. Some time after this, maybe all Macs will have touch screens. This just seems to me to be the natural direction Apple is going in.
     
  16. herdnerfer macrumors 6502

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    #16

    They do this all the time with HDTVs, you can get a 1080p 32" HDTV with a much higher PPI than a 65" for much cheaper than the 65" and that smaller TV looks much crisper & cleaner.
     
  17. benji888 thread starter macrumors 65816

    benji888

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    #17
    I know. I understand that. Yeah, sure in video land, a fixed resolution is the standard, but, I come from a graphics background and to me, years ago WYSIWYG was never really WYSIWYG, but, now with 326 ppi retina displays it really is WYSIWYG. Anyway, from my point of view, I'd like to see 326 ppi be the new standard not fixed resolutions.

    Yeah, I admit, when I was reading about UHDTV and realized that my favorite movie format IMAX is 4K also, and looks great, yeah, that's great for solely video purposes, but, wouldn't it be nice if 30" and smaller displays were 326 ppi?
     
  18. Fairchild macrumors member

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    #18
    The answer to your first line: both the mini retina and the air are flagship products. Perhaps Apple's paradigm is changing. Some people prefer the larger form factor (you pay more for larger screen size) and some people prefer more portability (you get a smaller screen but at higher resolution). Honestly I think apple are taking a margin hit on the retina mini because in terms of production costs, it must be higher. They would receive a ton of flak for charging any more than $399 for a device who's previous generation came in closer to $300.

    I agree with you on the pro model, I think this is the way things are going; the MacBook air and ipad air will be converging, leaving the pro models to laptops that are more focused on high end apps and productivity.

    Touch screens on bigger screens is a gimmick. For one, who wants a million fingerprints all over their display that requires much more time consuming cleaning, and most importantly, a lot more physical effort must be used to manipulate a larger screen. If anything I see a gesture based system that relies on optics being an alternate controller to a mouse or trackpad.
     
  19. Peter K., Oct 24, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2013

    Peter K. macrumors 6502a

    Peter K.

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    #19
    Actually, ...

    I do fully understand how PPI works, but I was trying to communicate - perhaps ineffectively - the factors Apple takes into account when determining PPI.

    1. Likely working distance from face (eyes)

    2. Position of said Retina item in Apple lineup (i.e., How "premium" is it?)

    If the determination were merely based on factor 1, then the Retina Display Apple product lineup would simply follow this hierarchy, with PPI being inversely proportional to the expected working distance (from face/eyes):

    15" rMBP (220 PPI), 13" rMBP (227 PPI), iPad Air (264 PPI), iPad mini Retina (326 PPI), & iPhone 4 - 5S (326 PPI)

    Please notice the problem we already have with two device lines, of different screen sizes, at the same PPI (326).

    While I do concede that this is the status quo, I don't believe that it will continue to be so. I believe we will see a 9.7" iPad Pro at likely equal to 326 PPI, as it will be a "more premium" product than both the iPad Air (greater PPI at same screen size) and the iPad mini Retina (bigger screen size at same PPI). For the same reasons, I believe we'll see an 11.5", or so, iPad Pro with a PPI of between 227 and 264 (probably very close to 264, as this clearly puts this product in a dominating position over the iPad Air.

    This new lineup all but necessitates that the iPhone 6 have a PPI in the 400s, both to reestablish itself as the "most premium" iOS/Retina product and to fall in line with the "closeness to face = higher PPI" paradigm.
     
  20. benji888 thread starter macrumors 65816

    benji888

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    #20
    I didn't really think about the fingerprint factor, and, though you could do a matte or textured surface to alleviate fingerprints, even so, yeah, optic gestures would make sense, which also means more gestures would be possible, and I think I recall seeing an apple patent application for this, so I think apple is working on this on some level. I could see pro models using a trackpad & optic gestures, agree with you on this. But, sometimes I just want to press the button on the screen directly, you know? (They had all kinds of touch screens in the late 80s on Star Trek the Next Generation :p) ;) ...I also recall seeing pics of a so-called prototype keyboard apple was working on, pre-iPad, that was all one touch screen, keys changed depending on app you're using, was supposed to be something made available a couple years later, in 2010. (they also showed pics of prototype "iTablet") :)
     
  21. Southernboyj macrumors 68000

    Southernboyj

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    #21
    This. Spot on.
     
  22. Helmigurt macrumors member

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    #22
    I don't see this at all - At least not for the next 5-10 years. Apple said time and time again that they have a completely different strategy then MS in this regard: While MS makes an OS which can be used on all platforms with Windows 8, Apple still draws a very hard line between touch based os and mouse + keyboard os and according to their statements this will be the way forward. Obviously iOS will make further inroads as more and more people can do most of their daily computing with iPads.
     
  23. benji888 thread starter macrumors 65816

    benji888

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    #23
    That's all well and good, but, you are missing the fact that Apple IS merging iOS & OS X. There will be a line between consumer and pro Apple products, but, where there is a line now between iOS devices and laptops, there won't be in 1-2 years. While the Mac Pro is definitively no longer a "prosumer" device, but a "pro" device. The MacBook Air and the iPad Air are getting closer in computing ability, to the point where you will no longer be able to distinguish the two in computational power alone, so, instead of making a tablet and laptop that will be equivalent in ability they will drop one or the other. Which do you think will be more attractive to consumers? A laptop without a touch screen or a tablet that is as powerful as a laptop?

    I am in no way comparing apple and microsoft. Just trying to make a point that, you know, if you have an iPhone 5s in your hand today, or an iPad Air or Mini retina next month, it has over a billion transistor count, (similar to i7) and 20 years ago, 3 million transistor count was on your desktop (10 yrs ago 100 million).
     
  24. BoredAtWork macrumors newbie

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    #24
    Its elementary math. Try to figure it out yourself. But needless to say, there isnt a chip efficent enough and powerful enough at same time to manage all those pixels.

    ----------

    You dont think that such a large device still runs like an normal ipad with single app only right? Multi window anyone?

    It doesnt have to be 4:3, in fact, a 16:9 fits 2 4:3 windows quite well.
     

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