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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  • eduo - Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - link

    (sent to @anandtech over twitter, silly me)

    Do we know if it's actually this specific version or an evolution of the technology? Vertically-aligned instead of slanted, for example?

    Hidefumi Yoshida published a technical paper not long ago specifying a process to generate vertically-aligned dual-domain TFT displays:

    http://t.co/JCpKM9Gwau

    Is seems the iPhone 6+'s display is Sharp's. And Yoshida, author of that paper, is Sharp's Chief Technical Reasearch Fellow

    https://t.co/BArwbMu3Oo

    Yoshida and an apple fellow being associate editors in the IEEE Journal of Display Technology probably doesn't hurt knowing and leveraging technologies, either http://t.co/5YslTMh7r7
    Reply
  • lilo777 - Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - link

    Great technology! Almost as good as AMOLED. Reply
  • KPOM - Saturday, September 13, 2014 - link

    I notice that the HTC One m7 uses dual domain IPS, but there is no mention of it on the m8. Did they change, and was there a reason why? Reply
  • anderct - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    right in the beginning heres a heads up

    In the launch announcement, Apple announced that their new display had dual domain pixels, which improved viewing angles.

    should be

    In the launch announcement, Apple announced that their new display had dual domain pixels, ((( WITH ))) improved viewing angles.

    I am not a grammar cop or anything like that I i actually tried to look for a way to PM you but once you see this please correct and just delete my comment and the earths orbit will be back to normal hahha later gator
    Reply
  • anderct - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    who would have thunk ?! (yes that's a word) jagged edges would come back to HELP us when we tried so hard to eliminate them. Reply
  • anderct - Monday, September 15, 2014 - link

    and further-more i actually agree with apples decision because ...the fact remains ...the more the spaces between pixels are more noticeable (the blackies) ...the more the resultant images or sequences show more artifacts. just a personal note ...but from actual testing ...if the eye can see margins / boundaries then it naturally wants to differentiate objects and selectively segregate them as SEPARATE objects or at least the edges of those objects. Reply
  • AppleCrappleHater2 - Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - link

    Worship the holy apple.

    The apple way, selling over expensive crap to stupid consumers that like to
    get robbed.

    This has been a disastrous launch in every respect. The iwatch is such a
    ugly piece of crap, it is truly unbelievable how a company, formerly known for
    its remarkable design, dares to put out such a crap ton of shit. Some
    characteristics are glaringly obvious and inherent to it: over expensive,
    hardly innovative, limited functionality and usability (need of an iPhone to
    make it work), looks exactly like a toy watch and so on.

    There are of course way better smart watches out there, especially form the
    likes of Samsung, Sony, Motorola, Asus, LG, simply put, there is no need for
    another piece of over expensive junk.

    The iPhone 6 is technologically stuck in pre-2011 times, a base model witch
    a capacity of 16GB without the possibility to use SD cards isn't even funny
    anymore. The screen resolution is horrendous, it isn't water proof, shock and
    dust resistant, it offers nothing innovative, just some incremental
    updates over its predecessor, both lacking severely behind their competitors at
    their respective launch dates.

    Now the Iphone 6 Plus offers a „Retina HD“ screen, full 1920x1080p, oh wow,
    where have you been for the past 4 years apple, talk about trailing behind.
    That’s pathetic. The interesting thing about that is the fact that apple
    always manages to sell backwards oriented, outdated crap to its user base, all
    while pretending to be an innovative technology leader. The similarities
    regarding any form of sectarian cult are striking.

    You gotta love how Apple always comes up with new marketing bullshit terms,
    aka "Retina HD", with the intention to manipulate its users while preventing easy
    comparisons with its competitors by withholding the actual specs. Apparently it’s
    not enough to have a 1080p screen, you have to call it "Retina HD" to make those
    suckers buy it, otherwise someone could look at the 4K Amoled and Oled screens
    form LG and Samsung devices and get outright disappointed. Same goes for
    everything else. Every outdated „feature“ needs to get its own marketing label
    to persuade buyers with crappy „experience“ and „usability“ ads, while covering
    the truth with marketing gibberish, knowing full well that only a fraction of
    aforementioned buyers cares to look at the facts and dares to compare them.

    Car engines come to mind. For comparisons shake let’s look at a 1.0 liter, turbo
    charged petrol engine and a V8 compressor. What’s better should be obvious, but
    by calling the former an „ecobooster“, thus giving it a special marketing label,
    this joke becomes a „feature“, something positive that can be added tot the list
    of features of a car.

    By doing so a negative aspect is transformed into a positive one, the
    reality is distorted, non tech savvy buyers are manipulated and comparisons are
    made more difficult (another layer of marketing bullshit to overcome), well done
    marketing department. You see , if something is seriously lacking (of course for
    profit, what else), don’t bother explaining, just give it a nice marketing term, distort
    reality, make it a feature and call it a day. Fuck that!!

    The Apple Iphone 1 and Ipad 1 might have been innovative at their time,
    but since then, the bitten apple has been continuously rotting from the inside
    outwards, always swarmed by millions of Iworms which regale themselves with its
    rotten flesh, not forgetting all other Americans who support apple by means of
    their tax dollars to finance its bought US Treasury/Government bond interest rates.

    Last but not least, every Apple product includes a direct hotlink to the nsa,
    free of charge, something that might make it a good value, after all.

    Ceterum censeo Applem esse delendam.
    Reply
  • milesmutt - Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - link

    Nice rant numb****. You really should get off that couch and participate in some healthy activity. All that indoor, stagnant air has rotted your mind into a jealous, hateful lowlife. Oh, and enjoy your crappy Droid, son. Reply
  • batongxue - Thursday, September 18, 2014 - link

    You can't sleep at night, can you?
    When you do fall asleep, Apple is your everyday nightmare, isn't it?
    Reply
  • batongxue - Thursday, September 18, 2014 - link

    So when is the iPhone 6 an iPhone 6 Plus review coming out?
    Can't wait!
    Reply

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