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Know Your Smartphone Screen: Types and Quality {Part 2}

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This piece is a sequel to the earlier post “Know Your Smartphone Screen: Types and Quality {Part 1}” where we discussed some types of screen used on smartphones, their advantages and benefits over other type of display screen, downsides, their relative quality, those commonly used in majority of smartphones and why, among other information.

Continuing from where we left things, two other types of screen will be discussed as related to quality under the headers below.

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We have discussed about AMOLED in the preceding article {Part 1}. PMOLED stands for Passive Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode and is in the same OLED family as AMOLED; call them sisters. Unlike the AMOLED which has a storage capacity and can take more pixel units, the PMOLED has no storage capacity and can only accommodate small number of pixels. That could be probably why PMOLED screens are mostly small in size (can only be sized at about 3 inches).

Due to the restriction in pixel sizes and quantity, PMOLED screen often have lower resolution and are not commonly used in smartphones. They are mostly found in MP3 players and other gadgets with smaller screens. Another downside to PMOLED usage is the fact that they take up more voltage to power up (since the pixels power up themselves without a back light, as seen in LCDs).

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Super AMOLED screen

The Super AMOLED (or S-AMOLED) screen is another type of AMOLED display entirely. Now don’t get confused, let me break it down. In terms of display quality, the AMOLED and Super AMOLED screen are the same. However, the differentiating features is in the design.

In any AMOLED display, there is a layer that detects touch called the digitizer. In Super AMOLED displays, the digitizer is embedded/incorporated directly in the screen panel, while in ordinary AMOLED screens, the digitizer is placed on top of the screen panel. While this may seem not much of a difference, it actually possesses some impacts in the efficient functioning of the Super AMOLED screen.

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How? The incorporated digitizer enacts higher refresh rates, reduced light reflection, higher contrast, low heat generation to the Super AMOLED screen. Likewise, the Super AMOLED screen is much thinner than the ordinary AMOLED screen.

However, like every other screen types, there are some downsides. In Super AMOLED screens, there are possibilities of screen burn-in occuring. Screen burn-in refers to when a previously displayed screen is still slightly visible in a newly opened display. For example, when your  Calculator app dashboard still slightly appears when a new app (let’s say Dictionary) has been opened. Also, the S-AMOLED have shorter life span with rapidly deteriorating quality.

That’s where we pause the smartphone screen series for now. More to come. Stay glued to this platform for more.

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