Screens up close … real close

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How some tablet, phone and reader screens look under the microscope.

For some people it’s not enough to just use a new device, they have to check out the details.

Lukas Mathis grabbed his USB microscope to check out the details of his new iPad compared to the older iPad 2. A good idea since the new iPad’s main boast is a better screen.

From his images you can see that the new iPad has noticeably smaller pixels but it also shows that Apple’s marketing is somewhat exaggerating how tightly those pixels are packed together.

Sadly the improved resolution does mean some increase in the size of iPad apps, which need larger, high-quality images to make use of the better screen. Since iPad apps are ‘universal’ everyone will get the larger apps even though they don’t all need it.


Anyone who has tried a Kindle (or similar) device knows how clear and sharp the screen is for reading. Check out the side-by-side images at

The clear, non-grid, background is obvious as well as the much finer granularity of the ‘e-ink’ screen.

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