Most resolute: phones with the highest pixel density displays

Most resolute: phones with the highest pixel density displays
The pixels per inch metric went from obscure to one of the most talked about components of a smartphone display's quality the minute Apple called its iPhone 4 panel Retina Display. It coined the term on account of the factoid that at 320ppi and more, the regular human vision can't discern the individual pixels from the viewing distance you normally hold such a phone. High pixel density makes text crystal clear, removes any icon jaggies, and improves the overall viewing experience.

We've had a rush for ever higher mobile display resolutions ever since, with the Android world quickly catching up, surpassing anything we've seen from any commercially available electronics so far. We are now even pushing to break the 4.7"-6.3" 1080p Full HD display barrier, and we aren't talking phablets only.  LG already showcased its 5.5" 1440x2560 pixels panel, which immediately got bested by Japan Display's 5.4" one with the same Quad HD resolution. We are talking 538ppi and 543ppi densities, respectively, easily expecting to break the 500ppi barrier with flagship phones next year. 

What about now, though? If the pixel density metric is important for you, we've rounded up some of the best pixel per inch panel counts announced or already lurking in the smartphone world, often going unnoticed amongst the other specs in the sheet. Some of the handpicked puppies in there will surprise you, so take a gander at the slideshow below.

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48 Comments

1. sum182

Posts: 229; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

I have a DNA, and still find myself amazed at the crispness of the screen sometimes. The only problem? Its gonna be hard to settle for anything less now....

6. majp89

Posts: 182; Member since: Jun 18, 2013

I had a DNA and got a Moto X. Wasn't that hard to go back to 720p.

13. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

Yeah maybe it is just me, but I rather have a 4.3~4.6" screen with 720p and the advantages that this brings over ppi. Than 4.7~5" 1080p... Mainly Battery Life, Graphic performance and phone size.. Come on Z1S where are you?!

25. TylerGrunter

Posts: 1544; Member since: Feb 16, 2012

I don't think you are the one. Many people are crying for a good device witha 4.3-4.5" screen with 720p, smaller size and a flagship specs. I think it's because in order to confortably use the phone with one hand many of us need to have a width under 65 mm, and none of the current flagship meets that requirement. Even the motto X is a tad too wide for me.

26. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

Yeah I think you are correct, my Acro S has a width of 65 mm and it is perfect for my hand... and my sister in law has an Xperia TX that pushes 68 mm and it feels not as comfortable... Of course it also comes down to getting used to the phone itself... but I agree here. Though the Moto X is just 65 mm too... I havent handle it yet..

9. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

I want 4k in 1" inch display.

12. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1264; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

Yes, I want some 1234567890ppi display, bored with such heavily pixelated 441 ppi phones... /S

17. Chris_Bakke

Posts: 246; Member since: Jan 23, 2013

It actually works out to 4405 PPI

44. skyline88

Posts: 698; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

enough ppi to spot the germs on hands

2. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2278; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

The "retina display" logic also applies to LG GD880 mini, Sony Ericsson Xperia X1/X2 and Samsung Jet, which were all released before the Iphone 4. Just saying.

3. bucky

Posts: 3790; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

That's awesome! Thanks for the incredible info....

5. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Are you always a douchebag or are you actually a normal person?

11. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

Actually, the Samsung jet had a ppi of 301 on a 3.1 inch screen

15. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

30. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Best keyboard on a phone. I was able to type without looking at the keyboard with an accuracy above 96%. I miss that phone. :(

45. skyline88

Posts: 698; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

much better than the awful N97

4. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

LG G2, HTC One, and S4 take the cake.

8. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Took the cake, ate it and left the byproduct all over the self declared leaders offerings. Retina display lol.

22. tadaa

Posts: 267; Member since: Apr 18, 2013

the cake is a lie

32. garlic456

Posts: 251; Member since: Dec 24, 2012

But the cube is forever.

28. Sadman_Hossain

Posts: 18; Member since: Oct 01, 2013

Ironic cause the G2 isn't even on the list although most people would agree with it having one of the best displays. Then again this list was more about resolution than display quality.

7. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Why is the Asus padfone infinity not on the list? It also has 441ppi

16. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

popularity I think... but yeah I would have place the PadFone Infinity instead of the Alcatel...

10. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012

Sharp is amazing!

14. jacko1977

Posts: 428; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

Sharp Aquos SH-02F thats a true retina display not 326ppi that crapple says

18. jacko1977

Posts: 428; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

physiology of the human retina is such that there must be at least 477 pixels per inch in a pixelated display for the pixels to resolve (become imperceptible to the human eye)

24. tedkord

Posts: 17397; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Depends on the distance from the eye. A 50 inch 1080p HDTV has about 45ppi, but if you're sitting 8 feet away you're not going to see them.

19. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

There is your answer to as why phone arena didn't mention the HTC One in this previous article about displays. No one really cares about the HTC One like no one cares about that Sharp phone. So stop whining HTC fanboys when articles use the more popular phones in comparisons only.....

20. Apoorvtheman

Posts: 47; Member since: Jun 25, 2012

I have a weak eyesight so my xperia s helps me alot to watch videos read documents etc on the 324ppi display

21. Taters

Posts: 6474; Member since: Jan 28, 2013

I just noticed that the 330 PPI screen actually looks sharper in a lot of ways in that comparison picture. Must be the color or something.

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