Screen Resolution

There has been plenty of talk over the last handful of years about how we should be writing applications that are device resolution independent. For example, designing screen elements in terms of real world measurements like millimetres (or for the metrically challenged – inches). There is no point designing a button that is designed to be touched by a large thumb at a resolution of 100 pixels by 40 pixels when its deployed to a 300 ppi (pixels per inch) device.

In the past I’ve read a few articles that have claimed getting to the 300 ppi mark would mean that screens would become as readable as paper (ignoring light emitting vs. light absorbing for a moment). Well, I don’t know about that but I’ve finally got myself a (near) 300 ppi device – and it is an awesome screen. Shown here below at half pixel resolution and still larger than life size on most (96 ppi) desktop monitors (click for full image).

HTC Home Page

The latest HTC range comes with a WVGA resolution screen (480 x 800 pixels) crammed into a screen that is only 42 x 70 mm. By my calculations that is 290 ppi compared to the blurry old iPhone 3Gs at 163 ppi. Now all we need is say a 24” widescreen LCD monitor at this resolution – hmm… that’s around 5902 x 3688 pixels!

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