While reviewing the Samsung Galaxy S III, and taking a look at the phone’s display, we focused our critique on the use of PenTile subpixels, leading to blockier-looking graphics than we’d see with a traditional RGB arrangement. While that’s a definite problem, the guys over at DisplayMate decided to take an even closer look at the GS3′s screen, performing some very technical measures of its output, and comparing those figures against readings from the GS2 and original Galaxy S. They ended up with a whole bunch of useful observations, with one of the most interesting being a “poor” score for the Galaxy S III’s screen brightness.
At maximum brightness and displaying a pure white screen, the original Galaxy S gives off 305 candelas per square meter from its display. That figure drops slightly to 289 for the Galaxy S II, but it’s still quite acceptable. For the GS3, on the other hand, the reading drops all the way to 224, a 26% decrease from the output level of the Galaxy S.
Aren’t subsequent versions of this components like this supposed to get better over time, not worse? In a way, these have been, as there’s a lot more we look for from a display than just how bright it is. In this case, those decreasing brightness figures are likely at least partially offset by the major gains in battery life with each sequential Galaxy S model. Sure, Samsung has been moving to larger and larger batteries, which also plays a major part here, but that combined with decreased display power demands have led to a 75% increase in battery life at maximum brightness between the first Galaxy S and the GS3.
The important question can’t really be answered by readings from lab equipment: is the Galaxy S III’s screen bright enough for your uses? Let us know if you’ve had any issues with a too-dim screen, especially when using the phone outdoors. If you have, would you trade some of your phone’s battery life for the ability to crank things up just a little brighter?