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Aug 19, 2009

The finest displays in the business compared on video

The finest displays in the business compared on video

Now that's a sight that can make a geek's heart melt - six of the finest mobile phones of the year, laying next to each other. The reason behind this unusual gathering is a display comparison review that an Italian blog has conducted. For some reason they've also thrown in the Samsung i900 Omnia in the battle even though it's obviously unfit for such a challenge.

So here goes the contest - all displays are set to maximum brigntness and have the same picture preloaded. The handsets are then captured on video in various conditions (indoors, outdoors and in pitch darkness) to check out how they perform. The 65K color limitation of some of the contestants is a bit of a disadvantage at times with the selected photos but considered that it also shows in real life usage at times we don't find this unfair.

The first two contestants are the WinMo powerhouses HTC Touch Pro2 and Samsung I8000 Omnia II. The Android OS is represented by its two best-geared devices - the Samsung I7500 Galaxy and the HTC Hero, while the Symbian world reputation lays in the hands of the Samsung i8910 Omnia HD. Finally we get the omnipresent Apple iPhone (in its 3GS variety), which is still a benchmark for display quality even though it's nearly identical to the now two-year-old original iPhone. The only thing missing is the Nokia N97 but the comparison is still extremely useful as it stands.

Apple iPhone 3GS HTC Hero HTC Touch Pro2 Samsung I7500 Galaxy Samsung I8000 Omnia II Samsung i8910 Omnia HD
The contestants

From what we see on the video the AMOLED displays of the three Samsung handsets (Omnia HD, Omnia II and Galaxy) swim laps around their LCD opponents indoors making all of the tested photos look far more vibrant and eye-pleasing. From the rest the Apple iPhone seems to have a slight edge over the HTC Hero in terms of brightness with the HTC Touch Pro2 being second bottom of the league. It is of course still miles ahead of the original Samsung Omnia but that is hardly a great consolation.

When sunlight is involved however we have a totally new order with the iPhone 3GS easily trashing all its opponents. The Omnia HD, HTC Hero and the Samsung Galaxy share second place here, but their performance is nowhere near their Apple rival. The Windows Mobile handsets are a disappointment in such conditions, but only a brief look at the blindingly reflective surface of the Samsung i900 Omnia is enough to tell you they've at least made some progress.

Back indoors and in the dark it's all about the AMOLED technology and high resolution again. The interesting part here is the extremely poor performance of the iPhone 3GS in such conditions. We are guessing this has something to do with the shooting settings of the camera used for this comparison as we've hardly found any fault with the actual phone. Leaving that aside it's pretty clear that the LCD units cannot match the contrast of their AMOLED competitors but have a slight edge as far as maximum brightness is concerned.

Now just imagine if the iPhone sunlight legibility could be combined with some of that AMOLED goodness. Nice right? Well we guess we won't have to wait a too much longer for that to happen.


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