MacBook Pro With 2880×1800 Resolution Retina Display May Ship Next Year

Taiwanese publication DigiTimes has published a new report that says, Apple plans to launch a MacBook Pro equipped with a 2880 x 1800 pixel resolution display in the second quarter of 2012. These reports come amid constant chatter about an iPad 3 with Retina Display.

DigiTimes reports:

Apple is likely to launch its new MacBook Pro lineup with a display resolution of 2880 by 1800 in the second quarter of 2012, setting a new round of competition for panel specifications in the notebook industry, according to sources in the upstream supply chain.

While the prevailing MacBook models have displays with resolutions ranging from 1680 by 1050 to 1280 by 800, the ultra-high resolution for the new MacBook Pro will further differentiate Apple’s products from other brands, commented the sources.

The 2880 x 1800 pixel resolution is double (well, four times technically) the resolution of a present generation 15″ MacBook Pro.

Apple built in some support for high resolution displays in Lion by introducing a scheme similar to iOS for dealing with varied resolutions. The “HiDPI” mode, as Apple calls it, lets developers supply images of different resolutions so that the OS can select an appropriately sized version depending on a display.

Hi Res Lion UI Elements

Lion in HiDPI Mode (image courtsey: Cult of Mac)

In a few years from now, we can totally visualize a MacBook Air with a 15″ high resolution display along with all-Flash storage. Apple has already made acquisitions in fields like semiconductors and storage where it doesn’t have much of expertise, and we wonder if it has anything similar in the works for displays as well.

It’s not just Apple who’s working on high resolution displays. Windows 8 supports image scaling for high resolution screens, Intel’s Ivy Bridge chips would natively support 4096 x 4096 displays and according to DigiTimes, manufacturers like Acer and Asus are also working on increasing the display resolution of Ultrbooks to 1920 x 1080 pixels.

A small section from a chapter of Steve Jobs’s biography shows how far we’ve come:

This graphical user interface—or GUI, pronounced “gooey”—was facilitated by another concept pioneered at Xerox PARC: bitmapping. Until then, most computers were character-based. You would type a character on a keyboard, and the computer would generate that character on the screen, usually in glowing greenish phosphor against a dark background. Since there were a limited number of letters, numerals, and symbols, it didn’t take a whole lot of computer code or processing power to accomplish this. In a bitmap system, on the other hand, each and every pixel on the screen is controlled by bits in the computer’s memory. To render something on the screen, such as a letter, the computer has to tell each pixel to be light or dark or, in the case of color displays, what color to be. This uses a lot of computing power, but it permits gorgeous graphics, fonts, and gee-whiz screen displays.

[via DigiTimes]