LG Display have announced a new 5.7-inch, "QHD+" resolution LCD panel designed for smartphones. The display has an unusual quoted aspect ratio of 18:9, or 2:1, and has a resolution of 1,440 by 2,880 pixels, higher than the QHD panel resolution of 1,440 by 2,560 pixels. This resolution gives the new display a quoted screen sharpness of 564ppi. LG state that the change in aspect ratio is designed to improve watching videos on a smartphone but another side effect will be that it makes it slightly easier to use dual application multitasking as there are more pixels on the screen.
LG Display have provided the new 5.7-inch QHD+ panel with their proprietary in-TOUCH technology, designed to enhance the touch responsiveness of the display by placing the touch sensor inside the LCD cell rather than outside via the Touch Cover Glass, as with most other LCD panels. This carries two other important benefits: firstly, it reduces the thickness of the LCD panel and second, it reduces the bezel, which is important for today's fashion-conscious smartphone designers. LG Display reports that without the Touch Cover Glass, the display is under 1mm thick and compared with the average QHD LCD panel, the new QHD+ unit has 20% reduced top bezels and 10% reduced side bezels. LG Display have also reduced the power consumption of their new QHD+ 5.7-inch panel, which is quoted as using 30% less energy than previous generations of display. The unit is also said to feature improved outdoor visibility, which may be because there are fewer glass layers.
Although LG Display have and will continue to invest a significant sum of money into developing OLED panel technology, the business continues to produce high-quality LCD panels and there is clearly a market for the product. Indeed, LG's smartphones have consistently used LCD panels and this new 5.7-inch QHD+ panel may be destined for the LG G6 flagship smartphone, or a similar device, due out in early 2017. It will be interesting to see if the new LG QHD+ display passes Google's vigorous Daydream certification benchmarks, as to date the only devices that have passed have used an OLED panel. This is because OLED technology has a faster response time compared with LCD panels, which is vital for the Google Daydream and other low-lag virtual reality systems. Luckily, we don't have too long before LG release their 2017 flagship device.