Why glossy screens don't work in notebooks

Summary:I've been complaining about Apple's switch to glossy screens for a while now. As I've said in the past, glossy screens simply don't work on portables as the glare makes the screen practically unreadable.

Gloss = glare = bad

I've been complaining about Apple's switch to glossy screens for a while now. As I've said in the past, glossy screens simply don't work on portables as the glare makes the screen practically unreadable.

What started as an option on the MacBook Pro, became the only choice on the MacBook. Then the iMac. The MacBook Air. Now Apple’s gone 100 percent glossy across their entire line. Bummer.

I got this email recently from a long time reader that pretty much sums up my thoughts on the glossy screen trend.

I just got a new MacBook to replace my 1st Gen MacBook and after an 8 hour migration nightmare  (No gigabit on one, No FireWire on other so it was all USB) then I finally got it ready for my trip. On the flight I decided to get some work done and was amazed at how unusable this is in non-optimal situations.  Like an airplane!?

With glossy screens then there are little things you could do to make things better or worse. But for this picture I turned the brightness 100%, shut the window shade and this is an accurate picture of what I saw.

Dark backgrounds are obviously worse, but even with white then you're still fighting to focus on the screen rather than your reflection. Not only because it's a glass screen, but also because it has a pretty huge black glass bezel. This is really going to be a problem because your environment will be dictating your computer usage.

I can relate to migration nightmares thanks to a lack of FireWire but that's a topic for another blog post, but it's the glare in the picture above that speaks volumes. How can something like this slip through QA and testing in Cupertino? Have Apple's MacBook team turned into a bunch of yes men for Ive and Jobs?

Stop the madness!

[poll id=90]

Topics: Apple, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility

About

Jason D. O'Grady developed an affinity for Apple computers after using the original Lisa, and this affinity turned into a bona-fide obsession when he got the original 128 KB Macintosh in 1984. He started writing one of the first Web sites about Apple (O'Grady's PowerPage) in 1995 and is considered to be one of the fathers of blogging.... Full Bio

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