One of the physical drawbacks of OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) displays is that the manufacturing process can't quite reach the insane pixel density that traditional LCD makers can. We can argue about saturation, color representation, and pentile until we're blue in the face, but this particular issue is backed by real numbers, and because of it, high-end LCD displays like the ones on the HTC One X are more crisp and clear in some areas. 

That all may be changing soon, if we're to believe a report from Korea that Samsung has perfected their FMM (Fine Metal Mask) production techniques to produce OLED displays at up to 350 ppi. In comparison, the iPhone 4S display (labeled as "retina") is 326 ppi. More pixels per inch (that's what ppi stands for) means cleaner lines on text and image borders, and is generally considered a good thing. 

We'll keep our eyes on this one, and if it turns out to be true we should be seeing some interesting screens on Samsung phones late this year. We like interesting.

Source: ETNews (Korean); via  OLED-Info


Reader comments

Samsung supposedly set to produce 350 ppi OLED display


Very exciting stuff! Hopefully they can pump these out on their new phones soon. This will really allow them the opportunity to bury Apple in terms of hardware design if they are cost effective and energy efficient

Knowing Samsung, QA will once again be absolutely horrible for these things. Burn-in was terrible on my S2, and now I have distinctly dark spots on my S3, and a cracked back cover. Bravo. If only their build quality was as top notch as their specs...

As much as I love AMOLED this still won't solve the issue of the whites having a blue hue.

Phil described the Galaxy Nexus screen as looking like a yellowed newspaper. AMOLED screens simply can't overcome this at this point.

So as happy as some may be at this, don't be surprised when people still argue that SLCD 2 is better.

Maybe I had a bad SLCD2 on my EVO LTE but it had a horrible redish tint to it. Of course, it then decided to have a flickering issue that looked a lot like a refresh rate issue so I returned it for the GS3. I honestly think arguing about color temp on these two technologies is much less important than contrast ratio and ppi.

I think you did have a bad display because I have a One X and a good friend has an SGS3. I have never had issues with my screen and even he will admit my display is better. (He does like to brag about his expandable storage though)

I don't think contrast ratio and PPI are a great argument anymore. PPI has gotten to the point where bigger won't make a big difference. Also, more pixels equals more use of the processor and battery. As long as contrast stays where it is with SLCD 2, then I don't think it is a major issue, although SAMOLED does win.

Color temp is pretty obvious when you hold the two phones next to each other. And regardless of what people on forums say, the pentile matrix is noticeable especially if you hold the phones side by side.

Anecdotal comment... I own the Galaxy S3 myself and my friend owns the HTC One X, and I prefer my screen to his. Even he admits when I showed him a 1080p HD clip from youtube how the colors just pop on my phone, along with the inky blacks.

Sure the HTC One X is crisp with it's better whites, and clarity due to it's S-LCD 2 Panel. That doesn't mean it makes it better over the S-AMOLED...

But then again, mine is an anecdotal experience too. Your comment just shows how much of a fanboy you are, to each their own. There are people who prefer both screens, and don't need to give their opinions as fact.

I feel the same way. The argument I make is that color and black levels are kind of akin to headphones. Most people want headphones that sound great for rock and pop. If you listen to rock and pop on headphones that very accurate (flat response), you find that pop and rock sound kind of crappy.

It wasn't just yours, the EVO4GLTE had a color issue. All the ones I sold, plus my own, had this tint. The last update seems to have corrected it and mine looks sharp and color correct.

I have never had a color issue on my Evo LTE. Nor have I had any flicker. The display is just fantastic- super bright, great contrast, accurate color, razor sharp. Much better than OLED.

If they can get SAMOLED to 400nits without much wear on the pixels and laminate it to the screen so it's less reflective and even easier to see in the light, then I'd prefer AMOLED. I still love the SLCD2 screen on the One X, it's got a nice contrast and is easy to see in daylight.

LCD blacks are just a dark grey. My Nexus's screen looks like it's off when displaying a solid black color.

The color saturation on Samsung displays is nice. Images tend to have a bluish tint to them. Dark scenes do look awesome though.

I fully agree, but recently determined for myself that brightness is of more value to me. The S3 compared to my DX is just too dim. The S3 is beautiful, but when it's in my window as a GPS nav unit, it just doesn't cut it. Returned the S3 and it's high tech screen for my ordinary DX LCD.

Samsung Mobility and Samsung Display operate semi-independent. Most people assume that it's just one division. Samsung is a huge conglomerate that makes a vast amount of products. Each division operates to sell the most it can to whomever pays.

I assume you mean HD Super AMOLED Plus? SAMOLED+ first showed up on the SGSII. HDSAMOLED was on the Note, GNex, and SGSIII.

Just a guess, but I'd say they call this HD Super AMOLED Plus.

I hope they put this in the nexus. Can't wait to see what kind of phone they make with these. And keep the big batteries in the phones too.

OMG! OMG! OMG! Looking forward to this. The best thing about the iPhone 4/4S was the display. Hope Nexus gets it.

Gosh they need to get rid of the whites looking green. Just put the GNex beside the Nex7 with white on both screens (like reading a book). The whites on the GNex look really green, while the Nexus 7 whites look white. Don't know if this is a pentile thing due to the two green subpixels or what. If it's still green with more rez, then it's going to ruin it for me.

imagine the next Samsung Galaxy S4 having the following specs:

5.2-inch 16:9 SuperAMOLED+++ at 350ppi (with edge-to-edge screen, no frame on left/right sides)
Quad-core 1.7GHz
64GB built-in memory
microSDXC slot (allowing 64GB, 128GB and higher cards)
Waterproof chassis
Corning Gorilla King Kong glass(supposedly 20 times tougher than any current Gorilla glass)

That will be one killer phone.... :)

Please, 4.8" is large enough for me. I absolutely wouldn't want a phone any larger than the S3 currently is. I have long fingers and still have a reach to get my thumb all around the screen.

Im with you on this. Its big enough.. Thank You very much please dont go any further.

UNLESSSSS... unless they increase the screen size to make room for software buttons. but nothing more.. thats its...

I hope Samsung will increase the size of the screen, while keeping the size of the same equal or smaller than the S3.

and how would you hold such a device without registering touch inputs from the hand grasping the phone?

I love the contrast on amoled so much. It really makes the screen pop. I haven't noticed a problem with color temp. Loving the dynamic mode on my GS2

Is this technology still based on the PMOLED and AMOLED concepts? If so, why the push for ppi, unless this is another attribute to market a device. The Rezound has 342ppi using S-LCD, but I don't remember seeing that number included with most of the its advertisements. Just my opinion, but I think this is a waste IF the sole purpose was to have a higher ppi. I'm sure there has to be more behind this effort (maybe better color accuracy?), so I'm dying to hear more about this.

What Samsung needs to do to beat SLCD2:

1) Up the ppi
2) RGB, and RGB alone (no more pentile)
3) More accurate color reproduction, this is one of SLCD2's biggest advantages
4) Up the brightness

The natural low reflectivity and true blacks of SAMOLED is advantageous in outdoor viewing, but one of the main criticisms of SAMOLED displays has been that they are not bright enough. This is backed by hard numbers (gsmarena) showing that their max brightness is considerably lower than SLCD2.

Plus, the 5" IPS LCD display LG has already demonstrated is likely superb. It's gonna take a lot to compete with that.

I'm not sure about the lack of brightness argument. When I turn my brightness all the way up it nearly burns my eyes with a permanent image. I had the same comment from some people at work who walked by as I was showing it to a fellow employee. All of them said it went way too bright at max. I freaking love the thing though, I love how it gets more black than my phone bezel when watching videos or looking at pictures. I've been sold on AMOLED myself

I meant that while the naturally low reflectivity and deep blacks should make SAMOLED advantageous in outdoor viewing, the max brightness holds it back. From the large number of reviews I read of GS3 and One X, many say that the One X's display is more visible in outdoor sunlight. And it's simply because based on measured results, the GS3 display is not as bright at max brightness: 330 cd/m2 vs. 550 cd/m2.

Basically, Samsung needs to take advantage of the natural low reflectivity and deep blacks of SAMOLED. If they increase the max brightness more towards LCD levels, they could have a display that is the clear winner in terms of visibility in outdoor sunlight.

i wonder if that is 350ppi calculated in rgb terms or pentile. i am not sure exactly how it works but 350ppi means a lot less if this is a pentile display they are talking about.

Regardless whether it's pentile or not, PPI is pixels per inch. I don't know how much easier that can get.

I thought the point of Apple calling their screens "retina" displays was that the human eye can't distinguish clarity past that point. If this is true then there should be no difference in perceived picture quality, only bragging rights for being a technically superior.

Meh i'm sure apple will have something in the works to top this, either that or this will be fore the next iphone :-)........Thing with apple they don't do a lot of talking about their specs until a few months of release, these other guys like to brag about the future and their plans. tis tis

Amazon sent me a second Gnex (as an exchange) and before I shipped the original back to them, I held them side by side and opened up similar apps like the Phone, contacts etc...

Both screens were vastly different...

One of them has a green tint across the left side, the other one had a brighter bottom right corner and it was all around brighter while one was darker as noticeable by the diagonal lines in the phone app.

It's to my understanding this is natural for OLED technology, will this improve in the future?

Even so, there is no display that can turn me away from it. The blacks and blues and reds just pop and are unmatched. If only the white wasn't so yellow.

Puts me in a holding pattern with this... Getting ready to update to the SGSIII in a few weeks and now I read this ! Hmmmmmm....

Apple ppi (Pixel per inch) is 330 on a 3.5 inch screen compare that to the HTC 317ppi. The HTC is the better screen. Apple is keeping up. It isn't the standard.

Making pixels smaller is harder job then making more pixels. If Apple didn't have a software problem with screen diffrences they surly would make bigger screen with such dencity

The moment I held up my sister's X2 to my S2, I felt sick inside looking at it. LCD was so washed out it made me feel terrible inside. It's like watching tv shows with ugly people, come on man, I'm paying for tv, I WANT TO WATCH PRETTY PEOPLE. Their usually more shallow and make it more interesting anyway. The SLCD2 is very very nice, but I put my landlord's EVO 4GLTE next to my S2 and still could see the back-lighting taking over. She loves it though since it is such an upgrade from her old EVO

What about battery life in all this? Whats a beautiful screen without a battery that can handle it. I have to charge my nexus 3 times a day because of the hd screen. Come on people!!

Now watch Apple try suing Samsung for copyright infringement, claiming that Samsung's technology is very similar to Apple's retina display technology.

/end sarcasm

Let's hope that Samsung will use this new technology on all their portable media devices like their tablets, phones and portable audio players. This should give Apple a run for their money!