Pixel Quadrupling Hints at a Better Retina Screen?


When Apple launched Retina displays with the iPhone 4, we were introduced to the idea of “pixel doubling” to pack more pixels into the same (physical) size screen giving us Retina resolutions. A sharp-eyed hacker/developer spotted something even more interesting within the Quartz Core: EnablePixelQuadrupling.

If Retina displays give us resolutions with pixels so small that the human eye can’t detect them, what the heck would this give us:

Users of retina iPhones and iPads are used to the phenomenon of pixel doubling, where two-by-two squares stand in for a larger, lower density pixel. But how would you feel about a display that needs pixel quadrupling?
Via: iDownload Blog

Something on that scale would certainly qualify as “super Retina” as Ryan Petrich tweets:

Beyond how amazing this might look there are a few things that we have to consider:

  1. Would we really be able to notice the improvement?
  2. How much more will this make devices?
  3. What kind of manufacturing challenge would this represent?
  4. What kind of performance and battery hit would a device with this level of resolution take?

I mean beyond that, sure bring it on. I can imagine movies and photos in “super Retina” looking almost better that real life. Just file away into the same rumor bin as we put all the interesting but “what does this really mean” rumors we get about Apple every day.

Still…super Retina. Wow.

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Categories: Apple Rumors

  • http://www.facebook.com/THExREALxTACO Jeremy Taco Patterson

    Sounds like they’re bending to pressure to go spec-for-spec with other manufacturers… If it’s NEEDED, bring it on. If not, keep doing what WORKS.

  • vtecbandit

    if it already is more than the eye can see whats the point shouldnt they now focus on more power saving or thinner lighter or all of the above this new tech is gonna be more expensive than the old tech by default and untill we upgrade our eyes we will never need it better is only better if it has a point

  • drumrobot

    No. 660 PPI? Not going to happen.

    • http://www.facebook.com/THExREALxTACO Jeremy Taco Patterson

      Allow me to introduce you to Apple.

      Granted, they haven’t rocked anybody’s world with dazzling new tech… But that usually just means they’re perfecting something.

      I wouldn’t put it past them to blow Samsung’s new 440dpi display out of the water.

  • solferico

    What if that is not intended for an iPhone but for an iTV?

    • http://trishussey.com Tris Hussey

      A TV or many set-top box is a good theory.

  • http://www.facebook.com/burjoes Jason Burroughs

    i bet it’s the same as doubling. i mean, it’s already 4 pixels standing in for 1, so to interpret it as doubling the doubling, it would be 16 pixels representing 1. My guess is this is nothing but interpretation of words.

  • mabbent

    This would be for a larger screen at a longer distance in order to retain the retina destination without changing the underlying code. All scaling would be handled transparent to the coder.

  • mkimid

    480×320 x1
    960×640 x2
    1920×1280 (or 1080) x4


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