Poll results: Which quality are you looking for most in a mobile display?

There are undoubtedly many aspects of what constitutes a decent mobile display, and even more of what actually makes a great one. Starting with the obvious, like outdoor visibility and color reproduction, we can also list more obscure qualities like power draw efficiency and good vertical viewing angles amongst the sought-after characteristics of a mobile screen.

When it comes to personal preferences, however, we arrive at murkier waters. While manufacturers keep racing the pixel density clock with the power-thirsty Quad HD monsters of late, the average user might be well-off with a 720p panel even. When it comes to color presentation, some find the gaudy hues of most Samsung AMOLED panels "vivid", others sniff at the slightest aberration from the standard RGB gamut, while most don't really lose any sleep over it. On the other hand, we can seemingly all rally around the demands that our phone panels sport decent outdoor visibility, and are frugal with power consumption, as screens are the chief culprit for battery drain, too.

That is we asked you last week which of the mobile screen qualities listed below is the one you are looking for most in a phone or tablet, if you have to pick them based mainly on the display characteristics. Somewhat surprisingly, outdoor visibility went almost as high up there as accurate color reproduction (~26% vs 30% of the respondents). Power efficiency was rated third by our 2600 respondents, while high pixel density turned out to be most important for only about a fifth of our voters, followed by viewing angles. If we extrapolate from these poll results, those manufacturers that are smart enough to skip the insane resolution race, but focus on outdoor visibility and color reproduction instead, should see their efforts most appreciated by the end user.

Which of these qualities are you looking for most in a mobile display?

High pixel density
Good outdoor visibility
Accurate color reproduction
Wide viewing angles
Power efficiency



1. dil2abu

Posts: 315; Member since: Nov 09, 2011

I am happy with the colour accuracy of my Xperia Z1..

3. dexter_jdr

Posts: 1163; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

Z1 is a TN panel. no accuracy. just fast refresh rate

10. vincelongman

Posts: 5746; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Don't all mobiles have refresh rate of 60Hz? But yea TN monitors are capable of higher rates and faster response times than IPS monitors (but again less viewing angles and color accuracy compared with IPS)

14. dexter_jdr

Posts: 1163; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

i really dont know about other phone's Hz. but nokia claimed a doubled refresh rate of 60HZ using their tech puremotion HD+ . so it seems competitor phones has lesser than 60HZ. 30HZ S5 and 5S?

24. vincelongman

Posts: 5746; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

I highly doubt the S5 or 5S are 30 Hz Google's project butter made all the animations 60 fps I'm pretty sure iOS animations are also 60 fps Also iFixit said that the DK2 has an overclocked Note 3 display (overclocked to 75 Hz from the original 60 Hz)

4. adecvat

Posts: 654; Member since: Nov 15, 2013


9. nohatenofanboy

Posts: 515; Member since: Jul 15, 2014

so you happy with bad accuracy

2. Jason2k13

Posts: 1469; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

I'm surprised outdoor visibility is not number one, if you talk to the general public who owns a smart phone, they would most likely complain about the screens outdoor visibility and never how accurate the colours are. Modern smartphones now have HD screens, making accurate colours a thing in the past now unless your a tech geek who notices these kind of differences.

6. Japultra

Posts: 133; Member since: May 16, 2014

I don't think you understand how colour accuracy works....

21. Jason2k13

Posts: 1469; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

Please enlighten me of how it works? And name a smartphone in 2014 that the public complains about because of "colour accuracy"? Face it, people look at details and what looks good to the eyes, you probably think amoled technology is too saturated and unnatural but please tell me what the public and tech geeks on here opinions about it? I assure you it's mostly positive.

25. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Complaints about color accuracy are everywhere. S5, Z2, G3 all have poor color accuracy and plenty of people complained about those. Even M8's screen is inferior to one on the M7 and it is the best one of all 2014. flagships. Just because YOU don't care about it doesn't make it less important.

20. UglyFrank

Posts: 2194; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

There is a difference between detailed imagery and an accurate colours.

22. Jason2k13

Posts: 1469; Member since: Mar 28, 2013

Are you speaking for yourself or the average Joe who knows nothing about screen technology? Because the majority of people who buys smartphones are the ones who has no clue about this kind of information, and are happy of there current phone screen but do hate it when they can't see there text or fb messages in the sunlight.

23. erikiksaz

Posts: 170; Member since: Apr 22, 2010

And where would we be if all technology were designed for the lowest common denominator? "The average person doesn't care about sRGB accuracy, so let's just throw that out the window while pushing the way more marketable supahHD resolution."

5. irbaaz

Posts: 175; Member since: Mar 27, 2014

i dont care about it if it is above 250ppi and not greenish amoled

7. mayur007

Posts: 593; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

Samsung amoled screen is only which can be calibrated for accurate colors and for super saturation as well Amoled covers all the traits given

12. rantao333

Posts: 346; Member since: May 21, 2013

only in recent galaxy s5 latest amoled they finally catch up if not surpass LCD screen. but fanboys brag it ever since 2011 galaxy s2 until now.

8. ManusImperceptus

Posts: 724; Member since: Jun 10, 2014

An easy win for the mid to high tier Nokias; nothing beats their outdoor visibility and color reproduction. Tried my old 808 and present 1520 against Samsung G4 & 5s, iPhone 5s and HTC One - none of them got close, even in the eyes of their owners.

11. iushnt

Posts: 3147; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

Now try with galaxy s5..

18. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

I'd be surprised if the GS5's display was better than the 1520's with Clearblack, and assertive display technology, but that would be an awesome comparison... I'll have to check it out myself.

13. boosook

Posts: 1442; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

YANF... (Yet Another Nokia Fanboy) :)

27. kaikuheadhunterz

Posts: 1157; Member since: Jul 18, 2013

Yeah, based on GSMArena's sunlight legibility test, so far no one has beaten the Nokia 808 Pureview. I'm surprised no one talked about it in the reviews.

15. LikeMyself

Posts: 631; Member since: Sep 23, 2013

Who needs higher ppi? FullHD is much more than enough! Bring better efficiency, outdoor visibility and accuracy now!! Who needs QuadHD?? Well your TV for sure needs it!

17. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

I want it all!! Higher pixel density, and better technologies!... Ask for it all! .............. I guess I'm just used to Lumia hardware.

16. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

1520... Most likely the best mobile display on the market...

19. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Well this finally shows how stupid is whole "better viewing angles" argument. I mean, really when was the last time you didn't look at your phone dead on? As for whole PPI craze, I find it ridiculous and I see QHD, 4K displays as just marketing gimmicks. FullHD is all that is necessary if you plan to watch FullHD videos on your device, if not even 720p will provide sharp enough display for everyday use. Until QHD or 4K videos become widespread and easily available such a screen is pretty much just a battery hog.

26. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Coin flip for me: Outside viewing ability (honestly, I like being outdoors AND using my smartphone, so shoot me) and color reproduction. To me, acurate and sharp color reproduction seems to make a better display then any PPI count.

28. gigaraga

Posts: 1454; Member since: Mar 29, 2013

It's funny how the GS5 screen ticks all the boxes and no other smartphones (aside from Samsung's AMOLED displays) can achieve that. Also, Power Efficiency is also important in a display. Sony XZ and Z1's TN display was poor as it drew heaps of power, was inaccurate (that's what it needed X Reality Trilumonos etc.), and had average outdoor visibility.

29. chrisditya

Posts: 9; Member since: Jul 31, 2014

I like my eyes than Smartphone screen. So true colour and no refresh rate :D

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