Samsung said to be stepping into the 440ppi realm with Samsung Galaxy S4

When Apple first unveiled its high resolution “Retina” display for the iPhone series, many marveled — at the time, no other smartphone could boast a display nearly as sharp. That was multiple years ago, though, and as we all know things tend to change very fast in the tech world.

A changing of the guard, if you will, has already happened in many different areas. Android is now the world’s top mobile smartphone OS, Samsung has become the world’s biggest mobile OEM, and I might finally be able to get my mom to upgrade from a dumbphone this year. Welp, it looks like things are going to get even more interesting starting in 2013.

DigiTimes is reporting that Samsung Display is working on a new sub-pixel arrangement for its smaller AMOLED panels, and that the new display would be featured quite prominently in the Samsung Galaxy S4. We’re expecting nothing short of a 1080p display, of course, and in order to maintain a pixel density of 440ppi or higher Samsung is said to be using a hexagonal and diamond-shaped layouts as opposed to the more traditional side-by-side layout.

Samsung is currently trailing Apple in terms of sheer ppi, with each company’s respective flagship devices — the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the iPhone 5 — sporting 306ppi and 326ppi, respectively. Samsung’s feat is still a tad more impressive considering the 4.7 inch display size of the Galaxy S3 compared to the iPhone 5′s 4 inch display.

The HTC DROID DNA and several other 5-inch, 1080p smartphones have already bested those figures, though, with pixel densities of 440+ ppi. Some were worried Samsung wouldn’t be able to bring that sort of sharpness to its AMOLED-based panels in time for the next iteration of the Galaxy S, but should these rumors hold up it looks like that won’t be an issue.

Unfortunately we’re still left wondering when, exactly, we might see the next big thing unveiled. Samsung is almost sure to be headed to Mobile World Congress, but recent murmurings suggest we won’t be seeing the Galaxy S4. Instead, their showing is rumored to feature the Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 as the star of the show, and a couple of other neat surprises might be awaiting us behind several red velvet curtains. We’ll be in Barcelona to take it all in so be sure to keep it parked here.

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  • Thomas

    Q best of luck w/ your mom, I’m still trying to get mine into learning how to text. :(

    • malcmilli

      ha, i thought my mom how to swype a few weeks ago (got her a gs3 for christmas)

  • Kevin

    Lol samsung makes the retna display for apple

  • Fr0stTr0n

    Pretty much confirms the Note 3 will have it, and thus, I will want it.

    • andrew__des_moines

      It will be hard for Samsung to improve on the nearly perfect Note II. But if I can talk my wife into the hand-me-down, I will definitely be game to give it a shot come December.

      • Fr0stTr0n

        Hardly. A screen upgrade to 1080P with diamond array pixels, even larger screen, octacore CPU, more S-pen features, upgraded camera etc… plenty they could do

        • HellG

          All of that but the extra S-Pen features will benefit users how? be it a 100 core CPU? The Exynos 4 in the note II is crazy fast and the camera is really good, and Diamond pixel why? beside being only a rumor a 6″ Screen wont need that right? RGB will fit just fine

          • PhineasJW

            Exynos5 Octa-core is about battery savings, as well as performance. 4 low power cores + 4 high performance cores.

            And, I don’t consider cell phones crazy fast until they can browse the web like a desktop — no lag, no stutter, pages load instantly, etc.

  • domatau

    i always wondered why it took other phone manufactures (regardless of the os) so long to surpass the ppi set by the original iphone 4. it wasn’t as if apple made their own display panels and got a monopoly on it.

    • androidisawesome

      it’s the iphones small screen. the other phone manufacturers had higher resolutions with bigger screens. the Iphones screen is so small even a lower resolution will make it have a higher ppi. if Samsung made a 3.5 or 4 inch 720p display phone it’s will surpass the iPhones PPI.

      • ari_free

        They also have small screen versions but they are relegated to the budget line and don’t have the same specs.

    • Dudz

      ur right on smartphones, but long ago mobile phones have greater ppi here in japan. for example, sony-ericsson so905ics (you can check) has a 2.7inch display with 480 x 864dpi resolution, what gives around 366ppi. almost 20% more than retina display and 2 years before iphone4 (sony launched this model in 2008 here in japan). Thats why iphones had a slow start in japan, low display resolution, no contend in japanese and very high price.

  • master94

    While its great to see tech move forward I wish they would invest time and energy into battery tech. Screens are good enough since we cant see past 300ppi. Anything higher is a waste and requires the CPU to do more work.

    • http://www.brainlazy.com Phawx

      Investing in new battery tech *is* happening. The problem is the materials we need are probably on an asteroid off Earth or still in development stages like those that are built at the nano level via virii.

      There is no conspiracy with regards to battery tech. Perhaps in another 20 years when we perfect organisms to build our batteries, until then expect small increases in capacity.

      • andrew__des_moines

        The consumer market has made it clear it will pay for improved batteries (Razr Maxx $100 more than Razr until recently). This will encourage R&D investment which is the only true path to fruition.

        • http://www.brainlazy.com Phawx

          The Razr Maxx doesn’t use a better battery, it uses a larger battery. While I think we can all agree that having a larger battery is better, that still doesn’t invalidate my previous comment.

          There are many many R&D teams at work on better batteries. The only problem is that over the past ten years of reading about new battery technologies, none have ever made it to the consumer market. The problem is not for lack of investment.

        • Patrickl69

          True, the Razr Maxx is the best selling smartphone in the world. Oh wait …

      • xmichaelx

        “There is no conspiracy with regards to battery tech.”

        No, but there a lot of stupid with regards to it. Manufacturers insist on making phones thinner and thinner, which means batteries keep getting smaller, negating gains in battery up-time.

        Give me a phone as thick as the original Droid with a 5-inch screen, and it’ll last days.

  • toomuchgame441

    G3 is 4.8 inches… This article is all ruined now.

    • Go Hawkeyes

      When your size starts with a 4, every tenth counts.

      • a) youth.in.asia

        I’ll tip my hat to you, well played

  • Jonathan DeJesus

    Check this app out in the play store it shows screen resolutions that surpasses 4k, they even give the names to them. Its just an app to check a screens ppi density. Cheers! https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ru.sonvin.stanislav

  • Jonathan DeJesus

    I can just imagine what we will have 5 years from now. I am starting to drool :-P

    • acey_zero

      At this rate it looks like we will have 2000+ ppi screens which look exactly the same as today’s phones to the human eye, but run slower because they are pushing so many pixels :P

  • NIGHTSCOUT

    I think it would have been good to mention in this article, that Samsung has already stepped ahead of Apple in PPI with the Nexus 10.

  • bob

    I wonder when we will see “natural view” displays that don’t require pixels at all. :-)

  • R_Fact

    What is the point of all these pixels if few, if any, can see them?

    • acey_zero

      Bragging rights

  • erni74

    The Samsung GALAXY S4 will be great! And it is announced for March! Hope this will be right

  • http://www.mantrais.com/ Steve Schmidt

    Samsung is going to launch S4 in MWC and I am really curious to see the specs of the phone and what are the new technology we will see in the phone.

  • Charles Williams

    Can get to pick a different dial pad and made messaging better more customize for us

  • NightAngel79

    DROID DNA all the way :)