Tablet wars! Google's Nexus 10 could break the 300 PPI barrier

Apple's rumored to release an iPad mini tomorrow. Microsoft's Surface RT ships on Friday. Does Google have an uber-tablet waiting in the wings that will trump both of them? Rumors point to yes.
Written by Jason D. O'Grady, Contributor

Everyone's waiting to see what Apple's going to announce at its "little" media event tomorrow, but rumors indicate that it's a 7-inch tablet to compete with the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. And possibly some other stuff, too.

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People got pretty fired up last week when a Microsoft engineer implied that the Surface RT has a better display than the iPad 3 and a full-on flame ware erupted when a research scientist specializing in display technology refuted those claims

But don't count Google out just yet. The Mountain View-based Android creator doesn't make its own hardware, but it may have something up its sleeve that could trump both the iPad and Surface when it comes to display quality.

Originally reported by CNET (and recently substantiated by The Next Web) Google is preparing to launch a new 10-inch tablet to compete with the incumbent iPad and challenger Surface. The new tablet will be manufactured by Samsung and called, you guessed it, the Nexus 10

Google is hosting an Android event called "The playground is open" on Monday, October 29 in New York (the same day as Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 event, natch) where the Nexus 10 is rumored to make its debut. 

But here's the kicker, the Nexus 10 (codenamed "Manta") will offer a 2560 × 1600 pixel resolution (which is a 16:10 aspect ratio) and north of 300 pixels per inch (PPI). Besting, gasp!, the iPad 3

At least in theory, anyway.

Here's how a 2560 × 1600 Nexus 10 would stack up against the iPad 3 and Surface tabs:

  • Surface RT - 1366 x 768, 148 PPI
  • Surface Pro - 1920 x 1080, 208 PPI
  • Apple iPad 3 - 2048 x 1536, 264 PPI
  • Google Nexus 10 - 2560 × 1600, 10.1-inches, 299 PPI

If the Nexus 10 ships with a 10.1-inch panel (like the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 and Galaxy Note 10.1 do) that would give it 299 PPI. If it's a 9.7-inch panel (like the iPad 3) it goes up to a whopping 311 PPI

Apple people, is it still about the PPI?

Microsoftees, what do you say about Google's rumored PPI king?

Updated with comments from Raymond Soneira, President of DisplayMate Technologies Corporation

Samsung has been showing prototypes with Tablet sized 2560x1600 panels for a while - both 10.x inch and 11.x inch OLED and LCD panels. The most recent rumor has been a 10.1 inch 2560x1600 PenTile LCD display.

1. If it is a 10.1 inch 2560x1600 panel it has 299 PPI. If it is a 10.05 inch display (which is often marketed rounded up to 10.1 inches) then it will be 300 PPI.

2. If it is a PenTile display then it is not equivalent to standard RGB panels with the same PPI because PenTile displays have only half as many Red and Blue sub-pixels as standard RGB panels. If it is an RGBW PenTile display then it will also have half as many Green Sub-Pixels, but it then will have pure White Sub-Pixels that make the screen brighter (at the expense of color saturation and color accuracy).

PenTile is used because it is easier and cheaper to manufacture (because it has fewer sub-pixels) and can deliver brighter images (at the expense of sharpness and color saturation and color accuracy).

3. I hate to see displays get into Mega Pixel wars just like for cameras. Google and Samsung should instead concentrate on improving the image quality and color accuracy of their Tablets and Smartphones - neither of them do particularly well...

For a discussion of PenTile displays and Samsung color accuracy see this link.

For a discussion of Google Nexus image quality see this link and this link.

Best regards,



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