Curved displays have the potential to solve outdoor viewing problems and improve smartphone battery life

Curved displays have the potential to solve outdoor viewing problems and improve smartphone battery life
Cuved smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy Round shocked us with their sudden arrival a few weeks ago. However it was hard to see why should we use a curved phone, what is its raison d’etre. DisplayMate’s screen expert Raymond Soneira takes the Galaxy Round through its paces to explore its biggest benefit, a feature that is actually not a gimmick. So what is it?

The slight curvature of the screen might seem useless and we are also guilty of writing the feature off as a marketing gimmick, however that slight curve allegedly allows for tangible improvements in display performance. The biggest improvement happens when you view the display outdoors as it has much less reflection and is much more easier to read than a conventional flat screen.

This works by first cutting short the 180-degree angle of a flat panel and thus blocking a lot of the ambient light reflections and second by reducing mirror-like reflections.

Getting more in-depth, the explanation is that the curvature also blocks ambient light reflections and actually magnifies your face in the frame. Usually, ambient light reflections are what’s really bright and in the way out in the sun. Your face is usually the dimmer part and since it’s nearly 2x magnified there is less reflectance and the screen is easier to read. Interestingly, that magnification and ‘focus’ on your face starts to blur after 8 inches, and as one often holds a phone at a larger distance, the reflection from your face gets further dimmed and out of the way.

With a slightly more ‘matte’ texture, the concave display on the Galaxy Round brings huge improvements to outdoor legibility. Having better readability also means the screen can adjust to lower brightness and save hugely on battery.

These are two tangible benefits of a display curved like the one on the Galaxy Round. Now, what we’d want is actually a flexible phone that we could bend when outdoors and keep flat at other times, but that’s still way off. Here’s to dreaming.

source: DisplayMate

Related phones

Galaxy Round
  • Display 5.7" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, Quad-core, 2300 MHz
  • Storage 32 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2800 mAh

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34 Comments

1. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

If it's from DisplayMate, it's legit.

9. yudi.nemesis unregistered

With the right price, even an expert can do anything for you. All the things that DisplayMate say is very reasonable, but for better outdoor visibility and battery life something like Whitemagic Display or Assertive Display is a better solution than curve display.

11. Tommy1960i

Posts: 144; Member since: Oct 11, 2013

I wanna check if it's comfotable to view the screen. I don't care about outdoor capability. I want just a nice display with 450 ppi. :)

13. g2a5b0e unregistered

I suppose we should just take your word for it since you must also be an expert who has thoroughly researched & tested these different technologies.

16. yudi.nemesis unregistered

I guess I don't need to do more research and testing because Assertive Display and Whitemagic Display is a proven technology not just some marketing BS. Curve display + matte texture may be able to give you a good outdoor visibility and battery life, but you will also get a wierd and poor viewing angle. You don't need to be an expert just to know which solution is much better, just use your brain that's all you need.

18. tedkord

Posts: 17077; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

And still no evidence, just for say so. Now who should we listen to - a reputable test lab, or some random guy on the internet... Hmmmm. This is going to be a tough one.

23. yudi.nemesis unregistered

Lol... I think you should read my post #9, especially things i said about displaymate and this is what displaymate says about curve display. “It also improves screen privacy because the curvature makes it harder for other people to see the screen (unless you intentionally turn it to show them).” With Assertive Display or Whitemagic Display tech you will not have problem with viewing angles. Let me ask you something can you show how Displaymate doing their test lab??? because it's very difficult to trust someone claims (even though he's an expert) if i couldn't see the proof.

24. tedkord

Posts: 17077; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Displaymate is a well-known, very respected test lab. They break down their methodology on their website, you can find it there if you care to look. whereas you still have not posted anything other than your opinion, which you are entitled to.

34. yudi.nemesis unregistered

Lol... i still can't find any detail on how displaymate doing their lab test. From what i read everything they say is just a theory and the possibility of the curve display without any real life proof or comparison with other display tech. But On the other hand Assertive Display and Whitemagic Display is a technology that has been proven in theory, lab tests and in real life situation. Real life proof is much more trustworthy than any expert theory.

25. Finalflash

Posts: 4062; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Poor viewing angles is not a problem for AMOLED, that is why this situation is very lucrative advantage for samsung.

35. yudi.nemesis unregistered

I'm sure you didn't read the article. This is what DisplayMate says about curved display on galaxy round.. “It also improves screen privacy because the curvature makes it harder for other people to see the screen (unless you intentionally turn it to show them).” in other word poor viewing angles.

20. Tamer81

Posts: 37; Member since: Mar 15, 2013

Like the Nokia Lumia 1520 which is due soon!

22. Tamer81

Posts: 37; Member since: Mar 15, 2013

If it's from PapaSmurf, it's legit.

28. .TROLL

Posts: 14; Member since: Oct 29, 2013

Another cheap plastic from Samsung™ Why not charge consumers the extra £20, $30 more and provide quality Sapphire™ glass material than this fugly looking curved, rounded device? A rear flat back design looks really contemporary when relaxed on table! If it's the curve device it would be akward to text and type, and dial! ™

32. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

did you see Lumia 1520 buddy. it's a awesome device.

30. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

i want 1* DEGREE curve display.

2. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Future e-readers might be quite cool. They could look exactly like books/magazines. Would be awesome!

26. Long1

Posts: 399; Member since: May 18, 2013

The article: "These are two tangible benefits of a display curved like the one on the Galaxy Round. " I'll give you and to PA, some more: 1. The curve on the Round, helps to reach easier the corners with the thumb. 2. Better feel in the pocket, because follow the body curves. 3. Less breakable display , because can not fall on the flat display, but hit the edges of the frame insread. 4. Aerodynamic make more possible to fall on the back.

31. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

perfect for back pocket...........lolllllllllllllllll

33. Long1

Posts: 399; Member since: May 18, 2013

Yes. And not only in the back pocket, but in any pocket. Big phones don't stretch the edges of the pockets so much. And besides: .................................................. 5. The arch of the hand palm fits to the arch of the phone. That makes the big phones to feel smaller than the same size flat phones. Right?

3. cezarepc

Posts: 718; Member since: Nov 23, 2012

What they didn't say is that reflections are reduced at some angles and amplified in some angles. When light hits the screen at the right angle there would be an annoying streak of light on the screen. Flat screen is the way to go, flat but can bend to avoid cracks.

4. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4766; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

I don't think Galaxy Round is going to be a good device for reading or watching...the angle is too closed or narrow. Perfect example would be a version of LG flex with a resolution of 1080p.

5. cezarepc

Posts: 718; Member since: Nov 23, 2012

Agree. LG's take on it gives better viewing experience. Imaging that on a 10 inch tab, man IMAX in the house.

6. androiphone20

Posts: 1654; Member since: Jul 10, 2013

this is a step forward, meanwhile HTC is saving people's asseshttp://m.cnet.com/news/cell-phone-takes-bullet-for-gas-station-clerk/57609800

7. androiphone20

Posts: 1654; Member since: Jul 10, 2013

literally

14. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Totally irrelevant if it doesn't pertain to the article.

17. androiphone20

Posts: 1654; Member since: Jul 10, 2013

oh, it's you papa smurf. hello... friend

8. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

Just wish u guys out there will stop complaining bout viewing angels. who would look at their phone sideways for?

10. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4766; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

Now you gonna hear people complaining about bad angles when viewed straight on!

12. akita256

Posts: 98; Member since: Jan 26, 2012

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