How the iPad Retina display went from no-go to sure thing

“When reports of Apple’s third iPad first started emerging, the prospect of the tablet including a 9.7-inch Retina Display seemed slim to none. Industry analysts said suppliers couldn’t manufacturer super-high-resolution displays at such large dimensions en masse — at least not in time for an early spring iPad launch,” Christina Bonnington reports for Wired.

“Fast forward six months,” Bonnington reports. “On the eve of Wednesday’s iPad announcement, reporters, industry analysts, and supply chain snoops all opined with complete confidence that Apple would be unveiling a new tablet featuring a super-high-resolution, 2048 x 1536 display. And of course, they were right. So what gives?”

“Most of the early Retina Display skepticism centered around how these super-high-resolution screens were going to be developed. Many analysts were originally under the impression that Apple would be using an entirely new fabrication technique called IGZO, which stands for indium gallium zinc oxide, the material to be used in the display’s transistors,” Bonnington reports. “But it turns out, says Paul Semenza, senior vice president of DisplaySearch, of Apple’s three display suppliers — LG, Samsung and Sharp — only Sharp is going the IGZO route. LG and Samsung are sticking with tried-and-true materials (amorphous silicon) for now. In case you’re wondering, there’s no need to worry that one display would look different, or better, than the other. Semenza says it’s very hard to tell the difference between the two types of displays. What’s more, we may never get to the point of ever needing to look. As IHS analyst Vinita Jakhanwal told us, “Sharp may actually have to turn back, and use regular amorphous silicon.””

Much more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “GetMeOnTop ” for the heads up.]


  1. Gorilla Glass, it can’t be done. Steve advised not to give up.

    Apple loves to push further.
    Good is never good enough – and yet we have another example.

    Keep trying for better displays – higher resolutions – this is Apples greatness – setting the limit “to infinity and beyond”. Thx Buzz Lightyear.

    1. Indeed – no other vendor would have dared to push technology this hard. Only Apple had the vision, guts, and capability to put it all together. Everyone else just tries to copy and not drop too far behind…

      Hint: The “Great One” has the puck and its going into the net, yet again…hat trick!

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