Laptops with 1080p displays are so last year. A handful of notebooks including the MacBook Pro with Retina, Google Chromebook Pixel and Toshiba Kirabook already have higher-than-full-HD screens. Now Sharp wants to step things up a notch with its new IGZO displays for notebooks.

IGZO screens use less power than traditional LCD displays, but because of the technology used to produce them, it’s also easier to squeeze pixels together at high densities.


Sharp is plans to start production of three new IGZO displays this year:

  • 11.6 inch, 2560 x 1440 pixel screen
  • 14 inch, 3200 x 1800 pixel screen
  • 15.6 inch, 3200 x 1800 pixel screen

The smallest of the displays will have a pixel density of 253 pixels per inch, while the 14 inch model is a 262 ppi display, and the 15.6 inch screen has 235 pixels per inch.

While it’s nice to see progress in laptop displays, high-resolution screens can be a bit of a mixed blessing on a Windows laptop. Full-screen apps downloaded from the Windows Store tend to scale well to high-res displays. But desktop-style apps (which includes almost every Windows app released in the past 20 years) can be another story.

Windows includes tools that let you adjust the DPI settings so that text and graphics don’t look incredibly small on a computer with a high resolution screen. But many third party apps aren’t designed to take advantage of that option, which means that some apps will look better on a higher-resolution screen, while others look far worse.

It’d be nice to say that’s a sign that either Microsoft will roll out a better resolution-independent apps with Windows 8.1 or that these screens are destined for devices where they’ll do the most good (like new MacBook or Chrome OS notebooks). But as the Toshiba Kirabook, and even the Microsoft Surface Pro demonstrate, just because Windows isn’t really ready for high-res screens doesn’t mean device makers won’t release them.

Sharp plans to begin production of its new IGZO displays in June.

via 9to5Mac

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12 replies on “Sharp introduces new IGZO laptop displays with resolutions up to 3200 x 1800 pixels”

  1. More resolution is always good, but as long as it’s shortscreen (16:9) format, much of that resolution will go to waste. But then if it’s going to be running Window 8, it’s already pretty close to useless.

  2. You know, it’d be more than sufficient all the normally priced tablets and laptops up to 13″ just came with 1920x screens. Still a lot of junk out there stuck at 1280x or 1366x etc. 1920x is very sharp, perfect for HD video, requires less oomph and power consumption from the vid card, and there are fewer scaling problems.

    Once you go to 20-30 inch desktop monitors, then yeah it’s nice to get up into these super resolutions. And scaling is again not a big deal because the screen is just so big. But for portable? More of a spec war marketing ploy.

  3. Why do you insist on requiring anything out of Microsoft? This is not a sign Microsoft will do anything. We have Apple, chromeOS, Android and many other wonderful tablets / laptops out there that are not ever going to be part of the Windows ecosystem.

  4. Do they make 10.1″ and smaller screens? Don’t care about the full HD and higher resolutions. I just want the supposed lower power consumption for smaller notebooks/UMPCs.

    1. I suspect that, given Sharp’s existing supply chain relationship, the first device you will see a sub 10.1″ display will be a new iDevice. This is why sub 10.1″ output isn’t being talked about, output may already committed to Apple for the foreseeable future, locking out competitors.

      But as tantalizing as IGZO displays are, Apple will need more than IGZO displays to reassert its leadership.

      1. Actually there have already been some Android phones and tablets with IGZO screens released. Mostly in Japan though…

  5. I wonder if they will make them in larger, say, above 20″ sizes, yet maintaining the same resolution? That way you could get cheap mega-monitor with sh*tloads of real estate and resolution without spending 500$ and up.

    1. That would be awesome. A 30″ IGZO monitor that doesn’t cost a ton of money.

        1. That’s a little big for a monitor isn’t it? Personally I’d like a 30 to 42 inch IGZO monitor/TV.

  6. First Haswell touchscreen notebook with 8GB Ram and WQHD or equivalent gets my money.

    1. 15″ without numberpad and with anti glare screen.
      Too bad it’s 16:9 but I’m afraid I’ll have to live with that.

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