back to article Apple iPhone X screen falls short of promises, lawsuit says

Two iPhone owners sued Apple on Friday claiming that company misrepresents the screen resolution and screen size of its recent model iPhones. The lawsuit, filed in a Northern District of California court in San Jose, on behalf of plaintiffs Christian Sponchiado and Courtney Davis, alleges that Apple's marketing claims about …

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  1. redpawn Silver badge

    You can't measure an iphone screen

    It's like trying to throw a spear at a fish. You will most probably miss. With an iphone diffraction will cause your eyes to miss measure the screen. In all likelihood the real screen is better than a meter on a side. As to the pixel count, few people can count accurately past 1000 so any complaints should be dismissed.

    1. ST Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: You can't measure an iphone screen

      > few people can count accurately past 1000

      You're counting the pixels wrong.

      FTFY.

      1. RuffianXion

        Re: You can't measure an iphone screen

        /s I think I'm FTFT (Fixing That For Them)... at least I hope I am...

      2. Steven Brown

        Re: You can't measure an iphone screen

        Agree with you buddy.

    2. dbtx Bronze badge

      4D object

      its apparent size depends on the viewer's position on the surreal axis. Thus a 1m x 2m slab can fit in your pocket.

      1. Mongrel

        Re: 4D object

        Ahh - you mean Zorth!

        https://www.atomic-robo.com/atomicrobo/v3ch4-page-6

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: You can't measure an iphone screen

      It's also a retina display, which is more luxurious than displays used in any other phone on the market, and used super resolution, which allows Apple owners to feel extra smug that their £1200 smartphone has a better display than a £400 smartphone.

      I'm waiting for the lawsuit about the camera, as the latest iPhone gets owned by a 18 month old Pixel 2 and destroyed by a Pixel 3. (of course Apple shills are spreading the news that camera technology has no evolved so much, that gains are so small, it doesn't matter.... Results however say otherwise....)

  2. Wellyboot Silver badge

    Someone will Sue..

    "The screen is advertised as being 5.8 inches (about 5 and 13/16 inches), but is only about 5.6875 inches (5 and 11/16 inches),"

    1/8" is ..mumble mumble.. just under 2%

    Give owners the same 2% cash back.

    The individual pixels are too small to see on either phone so who cares.

    1. John McCallum

      Re: Someone will Sue..

      This is what one gets for believing the advertising BS

      1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

        Well Apple is the company that once famously said in court that a person would have to be stupid to believe a commercial (not in exactly those words), so . . .

      2. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Someone will Sue..

        This is what one gets for believing the advertising BS

        Or even just reading it. I've never bothered looking up any of these pointless top trumps numbers and never cared. Makes no difference to the normal usability of the thing.

        It's like these weird nutjob TV zealots banging on about their true blacks on their display panel. Why does anyone give a shit?

        1. Sonic531

          Re: Someone will Sue..

          I would agree with you up until the true black comment. That makes a noticeable difference in video games for me.

        2. ArrZarr Silver badge

          Re: Someone will Sue..

          In my experience, it's never a big deal until after you've upgraded to a new model that does a better job.

          Once you get used to the new model doing a better job, you notice the problem if you have to roll back.

          See also: framerate in games, power steering, having three monitors.

    2. Mat

      Re: Someone will Sue..

      >Give owners the same 2% cash back.

      Sadly that is about $20 or if you take into consideration the exchange rate for the same phone in the UK... £20

    3. RuffianXion

      Re: Someone will Sue..

      2 % cashback per image / video viewed? That seems fair.

  3. s2bu

    Pentile

    Samsung has been using PenTile for 10 years now, since they first started shipping AMOLED screens. Yet now that Apple used it, SUE?

    Yes, PenTile is “inferior” to a screen that doesn’t require it, but come on people. Apple ads don’t state subpixel count, so I personally can’t see this suit winning.

    1. Joe W

      Re: Pentile

      I know what a percentile is, and a quantile. Penile just looks wrong to me...

      That said: I like bashing Apple as much as the next Linux geek, but the calculations of "real" pixels from unreal subpixels is just horrible. Additionally the pixel density, whether real or perceived or whatever, is really high enough so this should not really matter. I wonder whether they looked at the phone before they bought it and. If it sucks in the shop don't buy it.... (unless it is a vacuum cleaner, those should indeed suck)

    2. gnasher729 Silver badge

      Re: Pentile

      "Samsung has been using PenTile for 10 years now, since they first started shipping AMOLED screens. Yet now that Apple used it, SUE?"

      Of course. The basis for the lawsuit is not so much the facts, but whether it embarrasses the company. Nothing in the world could possibly embarrass Samsung, so no chance for a payoff from them. Very little chance of a payoff from Apple either.

  4. Boohoo4u

    Excuse me a moment...

    I need to call my lawyer, and sue every hard drive/storage manufacturer in existance... they never get the actual space available correct either.

    Let’s see... 4K screens aren’t 4K either (it’s just a marketing gimmick).

    Mountain Spring Water is tap water...

    Politicians occasionally tell the true... but it’s usually on accident.

    Vitamins...

    Etc.

    1. Piro

      Re: Excuse me a moment...

      The hard drive thing is patently false: hdd manufacturers are one of the few getting it "technically" correct.

      1. Waseem Alkurdi

        Re: Excuse me a moment...

        "The hard drive thing is patently false: hdd manufacturers are one of the few getting it "technically" correct."

        Okay, so it's the RAM manufacturers getting it wrong. Let's go!

      2. ibmalone Silver badge

        Re: Excuse me a moment...

        While 'technically correct' is the best kind of correct to be, they didn't have to bring things into alignment with SI units, and the kB, MB etc. sequence had well-established usage. I really doubt they'd have changed things if 10^9 bytes had happened to be greater than a gigabyte (or gigibyte if we must, but I think that's from Family Guy). Do have a little sympathy though as storage manufacturers need to include extra space for error correction and reallocation.

        Not to mention the mess that dealing with different layers of storage with tools that report in different conventions is now as a result. 'This one says TB, but it means TiB, this one says TB and is SI, but sometimes also reports TiB...'

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Excuse me a moment...

        The hard drive thing is patently false: hdd manufacturers are one of the few getting it "technically" correct.

        Bullshit, they were only right after some dickheads invented new standards, it was always binary powers before that bollocks.( International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) in 1998)

        marketing twats got idiots to change that shit

    2. Cl9

      Re: Excuse me a moment...

      Gigibyte != Gibibyte

      1. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: Excuse me a moment...

        @Cl9

        "Gigibyte != Gibibyte"

        gigabyte ≠ gibibyte

        FTFY

    3. RuffianXion

      Re: Excuse me a moment...

      It's 'by accident'; but you are excused in this case, by virtue of your cogent argument.

    4. GreenReaper
      Holmes

      Re: Excuse me a moment...

      Some LG 4K screens *really aren't* even "4K", for a similar reason (they add in white LEDs, i.e. RGBW; this boosts brightness/contrast, or reduces power for the same brightness; but horizontal colour resolution is cut by 1/4).

    5. Velv Silver badge
      Headmaster

      Re: Excuse me a moment...

      I’m fairly sure the hard drive manufacturers have already been through the lawsuit loop of “false” numbers, hence the reason all tech sheets clarify what MB and MiB etc actually mean.

  5. Adrian Harvey
    Coat

    Screen measurements in inches are tube size

    Screen measurements have always seemed a bit unrealistic because, in the days when most TVs and monitors were CRT devices the measurement given was that of the physical tube diagonal, not the visible screen size. An attempt was made to have the metric measurement for screen size be cmv - ie centimetres visible. Quite confusing, of course as you couldn’t just use the usual metric conversion to work out what size of monitor you were getting for your money - especially where one manufacturer gave only cmv and the other only inches.

    Don’t get me started on wide screen diagonals and how they misrepresent screen area compared with squarer screens.

    1. Stork Bronze badge

      Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

      Not quite, afair it is/was the distance between the holes for the mounting screws. Nit picked

    2. Martin an gof Silver badge

      Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

      Don’t get me started on wide screen diagonals and how they misrepresent screen area compared with squarer screens.

      No they don't. As much as diagonals were a problem in tube days - relating to the size of the tube rather than the visible image - in flat screen days they tell you everything you need to know in a single measurement. You can work height and width out with simple reference to the screen ratio and some Pythagoras.

      The problem many people have - or had in the early days of widescreen TVs - was with the height. Height has a bearing on how 'big' a TV seems to be, and a 21" 4:3 screen is taller than a 25" 16:9 TV.

      M.

      1. gnasher729 Silver badge

        Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

        A 25" 4:3 screen does actually have a bigger area than a 25" 16:9 screen.

        1. Velv Silver badge
          Headmaster

          Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

          A 25" 4:3 screen does actually have a bigger area than a 25" 16:9 screen

          Which might be true of overall screen area, however if the picture is in 16:9 format you’re going to get a bigger visible picture on a 25" 16:9 screen than a 25" 4:3 screen.

    3. Adrian 4 Silver badge

      Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

      What's more, colour encoding in broadcast TV systems from the CRT era has half the bandwidth of the luminance channel. Because it's adequate for pictures. And your eye has lower colour resolution than luminance, too.

    4. Dazed and Confused Silver badge

      Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

      Screen measurements have always seemed a bit unrealistic because, in the days when most TVs and monitors were CRT devices the measurement given was that of the physical tube diagonal, not the visible screen size.

      The HP workstation monitors used to quote the visible size, then they got fed up with people saying that other peoples monitors were bigger, so they switched to tube size and upgraded all their existing monitors. But once upon a time they were accurate.

  6. Winkypop Silver badge

    Wrong measurement

    Use unicorn-tear picolitres per square xanadu length!

    1. RuffianXion

      Re: Wrong measurement

      Divided by the square of hypotenuseless of course

  7. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

    Frivolity

    It's a frivolous lawsuit but they do have a point. AMOLED resolution is different from LCD resolution. Apple do overstate the visible area of the screen, for no apparent reason. They have always kept the resolution lower than the competition presumably to get faster graphics performance.

    But that isn't why people buy iPhones and it really surely doesn't matter. So what happened to the principle of de minimis non curat lex? I suspect the short answer is an oversupply of US lawyers with enormous tuition fees to pay back.

    The law (and insurance companies) have an important part to play in keeping down dodgy manufacturers, but unsafe cars are a bit different from rounded corners spreading from the case to the display of a mobile phone.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Frivolity

      So what happened to the principle of de minimis non curat lex?

      In the US it was mugged by the terrible duo of Tort Law and Class Action.

      The case looks well-constructed (for US courts) to me so I can see Apple being forced to concede a bit and adjust their marketing but I suspect any payout will be minimal: the claims are inaccurate but what are the damages associated with them?

      Anyway, anything that brings about the end of the notch is fine with me!

      1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

        Re: Frivolity

        "Anyway, anything that brings about the end of the notch is fine with me!"

        The notch is a rare example of Apple getting it very wrong only to have the Chinese Android makers get it right (teardop notch, small screen hole etc.)

        1. DougS Silver badge

          Re: Frivolity

          Apple has a LOT more sensors/lenses than those Androids with the teardrop notch or hole. You can't fit all that stuff in a teardrop or small hole. Several holes maybe, but what's the gain of that when it ends up taking about the same amount of space? It isn't like you could use the space between the holes for anything useful assuming they are spaced as closely together as the sensors in the notch are.

          Assuming it is possible to have a camera that looks through/between the pixels, maybe all that stuff can be under the display in a few years. Until then you have a choice of a notch, a bunch of holes, or a "forehead". Given that EVERY Android phone still has a "chin" which Apple eliminated, they can't claim to have "got it right" either, so I guess we have to accept every phone has certain shortcomings and is a tradeoff of things that aren't what you'd want in an ideal world.

          Heck there are people who bemoan the loss of bezels, for reasons I can't possibly fathom.

          1. Waseem Alkurdi

            Re: Frivolity

            Apple has a LOT more sensors/lenses than those Androids with the teardrop notch or hole.

            Not necessarily a reason for a notch. Could've been placed at the top of the screen, like the top of the Galaxy S8 and above.

            Given that EVERY Android phone still has a "chin" which Apple eliminated

            The Xiaomi Mi Mix line eliminates the bezel in favor of a "chin" as you call it, so it's definitely possible to do the opposite.

            Heck there are people who bemoan the loss of bezels, for reasons I can't possibly fathom.

            I'm strictly not one of them, but those who do say that they make the palm of the hand cover a lot of precious screen estate. These bezels are ugly though. Back to form vs. function?

            1. DougS Silver badge

              Re: Frivolity

              Not necessarily a reason for a notch. Could've been placed at the top of the screen, like the top of the Galaxy S8 and above.

              In other words, a bezel. Just because it is smaller than it used to be doesn't mean it isn't a bezel. Why not use part of that area for display status icons instead of wasting it by leaving the bezel and displaying the status below?

              1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

                Re: Frivolity

                In other words, a bezel.

                I'm, and I think a lot of other people are as well, perfectly happy with bezels. The notch is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist and shows how much Apple has taken its eye off the ball.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Frivolity

                "In other words, a bezel. Just because it is smaller than it used to be doesn't mean it isn't a bezel. Why not use part of that area for display status icons instead of wasting it by leaving the bezel and displaying the status below?"

                Because a notch is just shit, stop defending fucking idiots at apple (never mind all the companies that copied that bollocks).

                Listen a "NOTCH" is just fucking terrible design no matter how much you want to love it.

                1. DougS Silver badge

                  Re: Frivolity

                  Where I did say I "love" the notch? It is a compromise until it is possible to put everything under an active display.

                  But I dislike bezels more than I dislike the notch. I want my phone to be all display on the front, that gives the best ratio of screen size versus device size/weight that it is possible to obtain with current technology. Why would you want inactive areas on the front of your phone? Then it is larger and heavier than it needs to be to attain a given display area.

                  1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

                    Re: Frivolity

                    I want my phone to be all display on the front

                    Why? To match your infinitiy pool and unframed works of art? The bezel is a perfectly functional element of a real world device. Making the phone all screen is either, just going to increase the number of broken screens, or increase the sales of covers to protect an increasingly fragile device.

                    While a lot of people do seem to ignore the notification bar, it's there for a (discreet) reason, which the notch unnecessarily disrupts.

                  2. JohnFen Silver badge

                    Re: Frivolity

                    "But I dislike bezels more than I dislike the notch."

                    Fair enough. I dislike the notch far more than I dislike bezels, because the notch interferes with the notification bar.

            2. Muscleguy Silver badge

              Re: Frivolity

              Just looked at my cheap Moto and it doesn’t have a chin, so I’m not sure what you mean. If it’s the home, back and whats running buttons at the bottom that is still usable screen space and I have several apps and games which use the whole screen and you have to swipe up to see the controls.

              The notch is not usable real estate so I don’t see the comparison.

          2. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: Frivolity

            "Heck there are people who bemoan the loss of bezels, for reasons I can't possibly fathom."

            I don't see what's so hard to fathom about that -- bezels are actually useful to users. Even if they weren't, the value of eliminating them is close to zero anyway.

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