Display burn-in trials: iPhone X vs Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy Note 8

Display burn-in trials: iPhone X vs Galaxy S7 vs Galaxy Note 8
Burn-in has been a buzzword throughout the latter half of 2017. Why? Because the brand-new iPhone X and the LG V series have joined the army of OLED-equipped phones, and the Google Pixel 2 XL, as awesome as it is, came with some display issues of its own.

What's burn-in? Basically, displaying the same static image over a long time will cause some of the display's pixels to wear out more than others, causing a “shadow” of that static image to remain on the screen forever. Yes, it sounds scary, but should we really be concerned about it? How long is “a long time”?

South Korean site Cetizen has performed a test with three OLED-equipped phones — the Samsung Galaxy S7, Samsung Galaxy Note 8, and iPhone X. The goal of the test is to determine how bad the burn-in can be after 500 hours of non-stop screen-on time with the same picture on each device.

So, what were the results? After keeping the same picture on all three phones for a total of 510 hours, the researcher pulled up an all-gray image on the devices and examined the damage. As you can see in the photo, all three phones show varying degrees of burn-in — this is now permanent. But the amount of burn-in varies between the three devices.

The Note 8 seems to have been damaged the most — the burn-in is so clearly readable that you'd think it's an actual picture. The Galaxy S7 performed surprisingly well, considering it's 2016 technology. And, looking at the iPhone X, we see the least traces of burn-in, but they are obviously still there.

Now, some displays may be more prone to this than others since every display panel is unique. That's why we wouldn't draw any broad conclusions about the Note 8's burn-in issue being “worse” than the iPhone X. We'd need to test at least a hundred of each phone models to see some sort of trend. Also, we weren't performing that test, neither are we properly acquainted with the process.

But it's a good idea to keep in mind how long these phones had to be on for the issue to actually get where it is — 510 hours! That's constant screen-on time, no rest, no sleep. In normal, real-world scenarios, a smartphone-addicted poweruser will keep their device on for about 10 hours throughout the day. But they won't be looking at the same static thing over these 10 hours, too. So, assuming your phone isn't faulty,

You shouldn't be too bothered

What we are trying to say is — don't lose sleep over burn-in concerns, but do remain mindful of the long-term dangers of the issue. It's a good idea to switch your wallpaper every now and again, or use a dynamic wallpaper, which moves the picture around. If you are on a Samsung device, make use of the “hide navigation buttons” feature to make sure the virtual navbar doesn't leave a permanent shadow. Don't set unnecessarily long auto-sleep times and do put your phone on standby manually whenever you are done with it. Also, avoid cranking up that brightness for prolonged periods — do you really need to check your Instagram feed when under the bright summer sun?

source: Cetizen



1. Jacksie66 unregistered

No need to worry about that on my XZ Premium..

13. Phonehex

Posts: 765; Member since: Feb 16, 2016

True that , You have a LOT more serious issues to be worried about on your XZ premium. Pathetic Speakers, extremely bad battery life , terrible camera in low light , clumsy ergonomics , Close to ZERO resale value when you want to upgrade. NO Fingerprint scanner in USA, Not even close to enough 4k content to actually watch on that 4k display.

28. Dr.SamX

Posts: 244; Member since: Jan 19, 2015

LOL Cruel but true!

38. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2278; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

The only thing true from that list is "clumsy ergonomics and the "resale value". And he probably doesn't live in the US. Also, since this article was about burn in, so was his comments, there was no need to get offended,

44. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2278; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Also don't forget that there are more 4k content than non-4k 2:1

46. Jacksie66 unregistered

Oh where to start. The loudspeaker is pretty damn good, better than most mono speakers on phones. The battery is fantastic, easily getting 6 or 7 hours of SOT. The camera is excellent, I was out last night taking pictures of the storm and got some great low light photos. The ergonomics are great, especially for my big hands. I plan on keeping this for a long time so I don't care about resale value. And I live in Ireland so I have a fully functioning and brilliant fingerprint scanner..

51. Trex95

Posts: 2383; Member since: Mar 03, 2013

Forget to mention crapy motherboard that suddnely dead faced this issue with Xperia Z5 premium.

62. baibhav93

Posts: 24; Member since: May 09, 2014

No no my friend ! you are highly mistaken... I am a reviewer and i own S8+ and XZ Premium. Battery life is better than s8+. and so is camera under a lot of circumstances in low light because we mostly use the camera for macros in low light. and talk about display, XPERIA kills SAMSUNG! ya resale value is zero and pathetic speakers though !

75. legiloca

Posts: 1676; Member since: Nov 11, 2014

Pathetic Speakers - wrong, Android Oreo upped the loudness of the speakers. Extremely bad battery life - wrong. This is not an LG phone. Terrible camera in low light - maybe true. K I'll give ya credit for that. Clumsy ergonomics , Close to ZERO resale value when you want to upgrade - Sorry. Not everyone wants to upgrade their phones every year like Apple buyers. NO Fingerprint scanner in USA - not my problem. Not even close to enough 4k content to actually watch on that 4k display - you probably don't know what Future proofing means. As much as LCDs will never hit the perfect black value, they don't age as fast as Amoleds even to this day. The thing is, that's why competition exists, not everyone wants a stuttery and lagtastic software, very slow update arrival, mono speaker, Amoled display and hey, even Samsung has low re-sale value, just a few bucks higher than the competition, only Apple as the highest resale value even after 3 years so jokes on you on that one.

82. cheetah2k

Posts: 2265; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

10% agree @Phonehex.. I had the premium. the thing on Android 7 and 8 crashed like a mofo.. Messenger and FB were its worst enemy!. The camera was a bucket of Shiiiiiiit too. crap in sunlight, even worse at night. Even with the sun directly over, objects that shouldn't have been dark were dark.. hated it. Resale, the phone cost me AUD$999, sold it for AUD$660, all in the space of 3 weeks.. Farking terrible.. And, @legiloca, Oreo 8 didn't fix the speakers either. made them only a little louder. still terribly quiet and rubbish... The nail in the coffin was no double tap to wake. WHYTHEFUK sony dropped it I don't know but with the home button on the side, DTTW is a minimum requirement. The only positive was battery life. It did good in that department. Bought the LG V30+, and never looking back - 500000% better phone all round.

2. Diego!

Posts: 876; Member since: Jun 15, 2009

I won't get rid of my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge until Samsung announces the Note 9 or Galaxy S 10

3. mikedemoda

Posts: 128; Member since: Mar 19, 2010

LOL!!! first iPhone with OLED display but somehow manages to be the least affected by burn-in... now that's some Apple sh*t

4. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

Especially considering it's an OLED display made by Samsung

5. nodes

Posts: 1160; Member since: Mar 06, 2014

exactly, if it's a positive things, it's made by Samsung. but when something goes wrong it's suddenly made by Apple.

39. tedkord

Posts: 17387; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

I know. Can you believe how everyone was blaming Apple for the code that slowed down older iPhones?

49. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Guys come on, it's a feature, it stops the phone from shutting down by shooting it in both legs. They got it as a feature from one of their vaunted updates or with their new phones. Stop acting like you're not jealous.

70. mikedemoda

Posts: 128; Member since: Mar 19, 2010

which is even funnier cuz Samsung gives Apple their best displays they can make but charge for a Note 8 as much as an iPhone X with worse materials and hardware... Samsung fans getting ripped off

79. path45th

Posts: 405; Member since: Sep 11, 2016

Made by Samsung. The design was by Apple. Don't confuse those two. Samsung just follows orders how to make it and as it seems they learn how, too.

81. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

They didn't design a thing, Apple doesn't have OLED knowledge. They only calibrated it but the design is all Samsung. While your statement is true for things like the SoC and PCB, other hardware isn't designed by Apple at all (apart from giving dimensions and such).

83. cheetah2k

Posts: 2265; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

WTF @path45th?? typical iphone user. knows nothing about the real world! Apple patented squares and rectangles.. Not sure, but last time I looked that doesn't include OLED technology.. duh

7. mootu

Posts: 1527; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

Is it the least affected? Put the same shade of grey on all 3 phones so we can see the true result. The lighter shade of grey they used on the X actually hides burn in, they should all be the same shade so we can see the true result. It's hardly rocket science.

9. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

I do think they all have the same shade of grey, but the burnin hides this fact. The iPhone X does seem to be set brighter than the others though.

11. mootu

Posts: 1527; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

That what i mean, the brightness will mask burn in.

31. Subie

Posts: 2378; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

Maybe, but then shouldn't the S7 have the worst showing of screen burn in, in the pictures above?

33. cmdacos

Posts: 4247; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

Why is that?

48. Subie

Posts: 2378; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

Because the s7's screen is the least bright in the pictures above. My comment was stricktly based on posts 7 and 11, and intended to show contradiction. If brightness hides burn in as mootu suggests then the S7 should be worse off in the pics then Note8. Especially in the first pic...

54. cmdacos

Posts: 4247; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

But the s7 could have performed the best. We don't know because the screen shades are not uniform through all three.

57. Anonymous.

Posts: 423; Member since: Jun 15, 2016

Exactly! The grey shade hue applied on all three displays isn't equal, and that affects the visibility of the burn-in. Hardly an equal play ground.

68. midan

Posts: 2968; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

It was exact same gray photo, just check the video.

63. Subie

Posts: 2378; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

Your absolutely right, we need to see them with the same shade for it to be fair. Seeing them in person would be even better. And based solely and only off these two pictures I would say the S7 did perform the best. My only opinion was that was that mootu's conclusion ("The lighter shade of grey they used on the X actually hides burn in") was flawed. In fact I would say that a lighter(brighter) shade might actually show burned pixels that have lost their luminance even more.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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