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5 Best Points to Judge Display Panel Quality on Smartphone or Tablet

Smartphones and tablets are used widely under different environments more than the other displays such as desktops, laptops and HDTV. Consequently, these screens ought to be capable of delivering the right quality with the appropriate color contrast, brightness, viewing angles and more to render a great viewing experience and for superior readability and quality. While there are many types of display panels being incorporated on the smartphones and tablets, here we come across a few factors that will help us decide if a given display panel can render the desire quality.

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Color Reproduction

If you click a snap from your smartphone or tablet, it is simply the color reproduction of the original scene that you have clicked. However, the success of the same depends on how close the captured scene is to the original one. To represent the original scene, the there should be a good color gamut, which means the entire range of color that can be reproduced by the device. Anyways, it has to be noted that the human eye cannot see the entire range of colors to make out the minute differences. The high-end LCD display panels have the ability to produce a wider color range than the other kind of displays, but this will not make much of a difference to most of the casual users.

color reproduction

Viewing Angles

The viewing angle is the maximum angle at which one can view a display with acceptable visual performance. Outside the stated viewing angle range, the image displayed on the screen may appear with poor contrast, poor saturation, garbled or too blurry. Usually, the less priced devices will often display very dull colors and narrow viewing angles making it tough to see what content is displayed on-screen when it is viewed off-centre. The IPS (In-Plane Switching) screen technology used for LCD panels is designed especially resolve the limitations caused due to relatively high response time, low quality color reproduction and strong dependence on viewing angle. Also, Samsung introduced the Super PLS (Plane-to-Line Switching) with the main benefit of the Super PLS panels is that they further improvement in the viewing angles followed by other advantages.

viewing angle

Luminance for Outdoor Readability

The term luminance means the display’s brightness and it is determined by the amount of light emitted by the device. The brighter displays are considered to be better as they are necessary in sunlit environments and it well lit interiors. Most Smartphone displays have a luminance that ranges from 200 to 550 cd/m2 while a minimum luminance of 800 cd/m2 is required for a screen to be easily viewable under direct sunlight. The Super AMOLED screens actually include capacitive touch screen technology that takes the advantage of increased brightness besides consuming low power.

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Contrast Levels

Contrast ratio measures the difference between the brightest white and the darkest black that a screen can display. The screens with high contrast ratios produce crisp images with subtle color variations and easy to read text. It is said that the AMOLED display panels possess infinite contrast ratio. While the contrast ratio is ideal for those displays viewed under low ambient light conditions, the contrast rating is considered for high ambient light conditions. In the bright environments, the increase in the screen reflectance that is a dominant factor and this is where the contrast rating comes into existence.

contrast levels

Use Color Card to test display quality

The color card or color reference chart is a flat and physical object that has numerous color samples. These are available as a single page chart or in the form of color matching fans. But, these are of two types – color reference charts or color selection charts. The color reference charts are used for comparing and measuring colors to check if the color reproduction of an imaging system. On the other hand, the color selection charts presents a palette of colors to aid in selecting the different kinds of colors.

Pixel Density

Pixel density is one of the most important factors when it comes to the quality of your smartphone screen. The higher the number, the better the screen. A smartphone with less than 200 ppi (pixels per inch) has a low resolution and does not offer a very good content quality as compared to a phone with a ppi ranging between 200 and 300 that is average.  Further, a phone with a pixel density above 300 ppi has high resolution while many devices have climbed higher than that with 400 ppi.

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pixel density


When buying a smartphone or tablet, the screen will always be a major factor, though it is not the primary decider for many consumers. Going by the brand name, Apple uses Retina display and Sony makes use of Reality display. In this case, Apple packs high pixels per inch count rather than focusing a particular technology. On the other hand, Sony’s Reality display with Mobile BRAVIA uses software improvements primarily to achieve impressive results. In both cases, the above mentioned factors ought to be considered to decide the display panel quality.



Abhishek Bhatnagar

Abhishek Bhatnagar, a known technology blogger & YouTuber from India. A Software Engineer by qualification, now he works as the editor-In-Chief, Webmaster, & Managing Director at Gadgets To Use. He runs a number of other technology websites as well.