A Japanese technology developer has created 8.3-inch and 13.3-inch OLED displays with an 8K resolution, paving the way for future iPad, iPad Pro, and MacBook models with high pixel densities that may surpass 1,000 pixels per inch.
According to Semiconductor Energy Laboratory, both sizes of their panels have a resolution of 7,680 by 4,320 pixels, with the 8.3-inch panel redrawing at 60Hz and the 13.3-inch panel operating at up to 120Hz. In terms of pixels per inch, the 8.3-inch display has a pixel density of 1,062, while the larger model has a pixel density of 663ppi.
In comparison, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max Retina displays have pixel densities of 458ppi, the current iPad Pro models have pixel densities of 264ppi, and the highest-resolution MacBook Pro models have pixel densities of 227ppi.
Anandtech reports that the method for producing high-resolution OLED panels utilizes crystalline oxide semiconductor technology, specifically a color filter made from CAAC-IGZO material. It is unlikely that any commercial devices will feature OLED displays using the technology in 2019, as the current designs are only prototypes and would require additional work with a manufacturing partner to be commercialized.
The company has shown the 8.3-inch panel at SEMICON Japan in December, but the 13.3-inch OLED has not yet been displayed outside the company’s facility.
The development of 8K-resolution displays is a natural progression from the 4K panels currently utilized in televisions, monitors, and a few smartphones, including the Sony Z5 Premium. Higher resolutions pose additional challenges for mobile device manufacturers, as more processing and energy resources are required to power the displays than in lower-resolution versions, making it difficult to adapt the technology to mobile platforms.