Let me preface: If Sprint 4G was available in my area, and the EVO got adequate battery life using it (two "no's" so far, in my reading), I would have been very tempted to get the EVO over the iPhone 4. But I buy based on what is, not what might be. And "4G" is still sci-fi in upstate NY.
Originally Posted by Hanson Yoo
That should read, "Isn't it fishy that Apple's big thing to to tell you they have a screen with resolution you can't see?"
Do you want photos printed where you can see the pixels? Do you miss 24-pin dot-matrix
printers where you can see the pixels of the type? Do you run your 24" monitor at 800x600 so you can see every pixel?
No. You *want* pixel density that exceeds your visual resolution for best results. At 330-ish ppi, that's right for most people, at typical viewing distance. If the device doesn't exceed your visual acuity, you see the pixels, the aliasing, etc.
Your TV analogy is relevant, but flawed. In either case of a 720 50" or 1080 40", you're choosing a TV whose resolution is, I presume, beyond what you can discern. Crucially, you're not choosing a 50" SD set where you can see the individual pixels from 12 feet away.
I can't stress this enough: You always want the pixel density to exceed your visual resolution. For the first time, we have this on a mobile device
And without a doubt, Android devices will mimic this as soon as they can. And they should. What's impressive to me about Apple's Retina Display is how unimpressive it is. It simply looks right. How else would you make a display than this? The thing is, after using it, you realize how every other display is inferior.
The new issue that arises, then, is, 'how much is too much?' 300 ppi is baseline for nominally invisible pixels. But even still, I can see the aliasing around high-contrast curves. This is not surprising. Laser Printers jumped from 300 dpi to 600 dpi about 20 years ago, because the difference can be seen. So eventually, we'll have 600 ppi digital displays. But that improvement is much less important or apparent than getting from ~150 to ~300 ppi. That's a BIG DEAL. (And compared to the EVO, which is about 200 ppi, the iPhone 4 is 50% higher resolution, and that would be apparent side-by-side to many people.)
As for doubling: that's simply smart on Apple's part. It means all existing apps will look fine with simple (and computationally inexpensive) pixel doubling. It also means new apps will degrade gracefully for old displays with simple (and computationally inexpensive) pixel subsampling. To have done anything else would have been a lesser engineering choice, I think. It's one of those great engineering decisions that works well for Apple, for developers, for users, and for marketing purposes. (The lesser compromise is seen on the iPad pixel doubling, but not filling the screen for iPhone apps.)
(Don't hear me as saying pixel count is the end all of display quality. I can imagine a lower resolution display with better contrast ratio, grayscale linearity, and color accuracy that looks better. And some say the better AMOLED displays have that balance, at least viewed indoors, compared to iPhone's LCD. That's another discussion.)
As for Apple's weaknesses: I think all this talk about display density and megapixels and RAM is unimportant. Hardware will increase year by year. Apple will be better for a while, and then be trumped by some other device (be it Android or Windows or WebOS), and then take the lead again.
What matters are the big-picture strategies. Read p6 of Ars's Froyo 2.2 review
. Cloud computing matters. If Apple can't figure this out -- if they don't have "cloud" in their DNA, the way Google doesn't have "usability" in its -- they will suffer. Not having a coherent, unified, wireless sync and backup system could be their undoing, IMO. Not having a solid online system for mail, calendar, and other services will eventually be a major problem. This isn't critical yet, Android gets lots of basic things wrong that Apple gets right. And Android's killer cloud stuff is still upcoming. But if Android gets the easy things sorted out and Apple doesn't figure out "cloud", that could be the sea-change.