Retina Display

What Does Retina Display Mean?

Retina display is a brand marketing term used by Apple to describe the displays in its products, which freature high pixel density and resolution that the company claims makes it impossible for the human eye to distinguish each pixel at a normal viewing distance. This, of course, is very subjective but the technology is designed to smooth out the edges of the pixels to create smooth, high-quality image resolution. Retina display technology was first released to the public in June 2010 as part of the iPhone 4.


Techopedia Explains Retina Display

Because the term retina display does not apply to a specific technology, Apple has used it for different displays with very different pixel densities. It was first used in the iPhone 4, which has 326 pixels per inch, and then on the iPad 2, which boasts a much lower pixel density of only 264 pixels per inch, making it quite easy for most people to distinguish pixels at normal viewing distance. If we follow Apple’s own definition of retina display then it follows that most modern smartphones from any brand are using the technology.

Due to the retina display’s high resolution, it makes any font size clearer and easier to read. The high resolution apple products are known for is made possible a result of a number of factors:

  • There is a higher contrast ratio compared to older models, making the black and white in an image more distinguishable.
  • LED backlights and chemically treated glass screens boost image quality.
  • There is a greater density of pixels used on the screen.
  • In-plane switching (IPS) provides better viewing angles.

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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…