In the launch announcement, Apple announced that their new display had dual domain pixels, which improved viewing angles. Unfortunately they dropped the subject at this, which make for a lot of room for confusion. Anyone that does a cursory analysis through Google will only find references to this type of display in monitors for medical use or similarly technology used by IBM monitors.

However, dual domain pixels are actually not as complicated as they seem. In fact, this is a display technology I remember seeing with the announcement of LG’s AH-IPS technology back in 2011. For those interested in the technical definition, dual domain pixels refers to the fact that the electrodes in the pixels aren’t all aligned. Instead, they’re skewed when viewed from the perspective of the lines defined by the rectangular edges of the display. Because these subpixels are skewed, it’s possible to compensate for uneven lighting that occurs because each individual subpixel is viewed at a different angle, which causes a change in color and a faster fall-off of contrast.

At any rate, this is easiest to explain with a photos. Above, we see the pixel layout of the iPhone 5. This is the standard rows/columns of pixels, and not really news to anyone that knows how displays work. Let's look at a dual domain arrangement next.

Anyone that has tried the HTC One (M7) or One X will probably understand the effect of this change as these phones have had this type of skewed subpixel format to get better viewing angles and less color shifting with changes in viewing angles. This can carry some risk though as black backgrounds may have some color shifting towards purple instead of yellow/blue, which can look strange but is quite subtle in my experience. There's really not too much in the way of disadvantages, so I look forward to seeing how Apple's new displays do in our tests.

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  • KPOM - Saturday, September 13, 2014 - link

    The FAQ for the HTC One m7 says it has a dual domain pixel display. And as the article itself notes, medical imaging equipment manufacturers also use that term. Also, Apple never claimed it was unique. Just that they improved viewing angles.
  • JayQ330 - Tuesday, January 20, 2015 - link

    I think they were called super LCD (sLCD) & is referred to by apple as "sRGB" & like super LCD it's capable of giving OLED contrast & accurate colors with great contrast, not like oled but close.
  • lukewayne - Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - link

    something seems off.. hardly any information to be found about a technology that is in an HTC phone that is over a year old...announced by LG 3+ years ago...
  • B3an - Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - link

    It's really sad that no one mentions this until fucking Apple use it. Tech writers are like sheep.
  • Spunjji - Thursday, September 11, 2014 - link

    I second that comment. I've seen those pixel arrangements for years and nobody ever bothered mentioning why they existed until now.
  • ianmills - Thursday, September 11, 2014 - link

    HAHA whenever I saw that pixel configuration before I just assumed it was becase the guy taking the picture wasn't holding his hand steady
  • Alexey291 - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    thanks you made me smile ianmills :3
  • Alexey291 - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    ah well if apple made it its the last word in tech and anandtech must have an article on it :)
  • bluemeansgo - Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - link

    Proof that technology for technology's sake isn't that interesting to the majority. People care about it when Apple uses it because they have a reputation for high quality and making technology usable. We can argue all day about whether that's the case or whether other companies make things just as well... but it's perception and mindshare that's important in this case.

    In short, articles are written about technology that Apple uses because people care about the technology that Apple uses and the article will get more views.
  • MarkEduard - Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - link

    iPhone 6+ specs:

    2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 - A1522 (GSM), A1522 (CDMA), A1524
    CDMA 800 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 - A1522 (CDMA), A1524
    3G Network HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 - A1522 (GSM), A1522 (CDMA), A1524
    CDMA2000 1xEV-DO - A1522 (CDMA), A1524
    4G Network LTE 700 / 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 / 2100 / 2600 / 850 - A1522 (GSM), A1522 (CDMA)
    LTE 700 / 800 / 900 / 1800 / 2100 / 2300 / 2600 / 750 / 2500 - A1524
    SIM Nano-SIM

    Dimensions 158.1 x 77.8 x 7.1 mm (6.22 x 3.06 x 0.28 in)
    Weight 172 g (6.07 oz)
    - 500 dpi pixel density fingerprint sensor (Touch ID)

    Type LED-backlit IPS LCD, capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
    Size 1080 x 1920 pixels, 5.5 inches (~401 ppi pixel density)
    Multitouch Yes
    Protection Shatter proof glass, oleophobic coating

    Alert types Vibration, proprietary ringtones
    Loudspeaker Yes
    3.5mm jack Yes

    Card slot No
    Internal 16/64/128 GB

    GPRS Yes
    EDGE Yes
    Speed HSDPA, 42 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps; EV-DO Rev. A, up to 3.1 Mbps; LTE, Cat4, 150 Mbps DL, 50 Mbps UL
    WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi hotspot
    Bluetooth v4.0, A2DP
    NFC Yes
    USB v2.0

    Primary 8 MP, 3264 x 2448 pixels, optical image stabilization, autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
    Features 1.5µm pixel size, geo-tagging, simultaneous HD video and image recording, touch focus, face and smile detection, image stabilization, panorama, HDR
    Video 1080p@60fps, 720p@240fps, optical image stabilization
    Secondary 1.2 MP, 720p, burst, HDR

    OS iOS 8
    Chipset Apple A8
    Sensors Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
    Messaging iMessage, SMS (threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Email
    Browser HTML (Safari)
    Radio No
    GPS Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS
    Java No
    Colors Space Gray, Silver, Gold
    - Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
    - AirDrop file sharing
    - Siri natural language commands and dictation
    - iCloud cloud service
    - iCloud Keychain
    - Twitter and Facebook integration
    - TV-out
    - Maps
    - iBooks PDF reader
    - Audio/video player/editor
    - Organizer
    - Document viewer/editor
    - Photo viewer/editor
    - Voice memo/dial/command
    - Predictive text input

    Non-removable Li-Po battery
    Stand-by (2G) / Up to 384 h (3G)
    Talk time (2G) / Up to 24 h (3G)
    Music play Up to 80 h

    Samsung Galaxy Note 4 specs:

    2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
    3G Network HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100
    4G Network LTE 800 / 850 / 900 / 1800 / 2100 / 2600
    SIM Micro-SIM

    Dimensions 153.5 x 78.6 x 8.5 mm (6.04 x 3.09 x 0.33 in)
    Weight 176 g (6.21 oz)
    - S Pen stylus
    - Fingerprint sensor

    Type Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
    Size 1440 x 2560 pixels, 5.7 inches (~515 ppi pixel density)
    Multitouch Yes
    Protection Corning Gorilla Glass 3

    Alert types Vibration; MP3, WAV ringtones
    Loudspeaker Yes
    3.5mm jack Yes

    Card slot microSD, up to 128 GB
    Internal 32 GB, 3 GB RAM

    GPRS Yes
    EDGE Yes
    Speed HSDPA, 42 Mbps; HSUPA; LTE, Cat4 (N910C), Cat6 (N910S), 50 Mbps UL, 300 Mbps (N910S), 150 Mbps (N910C) DL
    WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
    Bluetooth v4.1, A2DP, EDR, LE
    NFC Yes
    Infrared port Yes
    USB microUSB v2.0 (MHL 3), USB Host, USB On-the-go

    Primary 16 MP, 3456 x 4608 pixels, LED flash
    Features Autofocus, Touch to focus, Manual focus, Digital image stabilization, Optical image stabilization, Face detection, Smile detection, Exposure compensation, ISO control, White balance presets, Burst mode, Digital zoom, Geo tagging, High Dynamic Range mode (HDR), Panorama, Macro mode, Night mode, Scenes, Effects, Self-timer, Voice activation, Dual Shot, Simultaneous HD video and image recording, geo-tagging
    Video 3840x2160 (4K) (30 fps), 1920x1080 (1080p HD) (60 fps)
    Optical image stabilization, Continuous autofocus, Picture-taking during video recording.

    Secondary 3.7 MP, 1080p@30fps,

    OS Android OS, v4.4.4 (KitKat)
    Chipset Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 (SM-N910S)
    Exynos 5433 (SM-N910C)
    CPU Quad-core 2.7 GHz Krait 450 (SM-N910S)
    Quad-core 1.3 GHz Cortex-A53 & 1.9GHz quad-core Cortex-A57 (SM-N910C)
    GPU Adreno 420 (SM-N910S)
    Mali-T760 (SM-N910C)
    Sensors Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer, gesture, UV, heart rate, SpO2
    Messaging SMS(threaded view), MMS, Email, Push Mail, IM
    Browser HTML5
    Radio TBC
    GPS Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, Beidou
    Java Yes, via Java MIDP emulator
    Colors Frosted white, Charcoal black, Bronze Gold, Blossom Pink
    - ANT+ support
    - S-Voice natural language commands and dictation
    - Air gestures
    - Dropbox (50 GB cloud storage)
    - SNS integration
    - Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
    - TV-out (via MHL A/V link)
    - MP4/DivX/XviD/WMV/H.264/H.263 player
    - MP3/WAV/eAAC+/AC3/FLAC player
    - Organizer
    - Photo/video editor
    - Document viewer(Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF)
    - Google Search, Maps, Gmail,
    YouTube, Calendar, Google Talk, Picasa
    - Voice memo/dial/commands
    - Predictive text input (Swype)

    3,220 mAh battery

    now CHOOSE!

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