AMOLED vs LCD touchscreens: what's the difference?

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Most smartphones have a touchscreen and there are two main types - AMOLED and LCD. But what's really different about them?
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AMOLED vs LCD touchscreens: what's the difference?

Most smartphones have a touchscreen. And while all the different manufacturers shout about their own screen technology, there are really only two types: AMOLED and LCD.

It’s hard to say one is better than the other, but they do have different features that you might prefer. Here’s our guide to the difference between AMOLED and LCD touchscreens.

AMOLED

AMOLED, normally pronounced “Ah-mo-led”, stands for Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode. And it has three unique characteristics.

VERY BRIGHT COLOURS

Colours on AMOLED screens show up ultra bright. This vivid colour reproduction isn’t very realistic, but a lot of people prefer it to more realistic colours.

DARKER BLACKS

When AMOLED screens show black, those parts of the screen are turned off. So black actually looks black, rather than grey. If you’re into watching scary movies or want high contrast for a more realistic picture, AMOLED is the way to go.

POWER SAVING

Because AMOLED screens turn off to show black, they use a lot less power. So watching movies, which are normally dark, is very efficient. But when you’re surfing the net, all those white pages are make the screen work a lot harder.

LCD

LCD stands for Liquid Crystal Display, and they’ve been used for years in everything from televisions to digital watches. Here are the three main strengths of an LCD display.

REALISTIC COLOURS

The colour reproduction on LCD screens is normally very realistic. That makes it great for looking at photos or movies because everything looks the way it did when it was shot.

CHEAPER TO MAKE

Because LCD screens have been around for so long, they’ve become cheap and easy to make. And that means you can get a phone with a great LCD screen for a great price. And if you accidentally break your screen, they’re usually cheaper to replace.

GREAT IN DIRECT SUNLIGHT

LCDs are usually really bright, making them easier to view in sunlight. If you use your phone a lot while you’re out and about, an LCD screen will be more useful.

LCD and AMOLED screens both give sharp, bright pictures, so the only way to see which is best for you is to play around with them for a few minutes. Why not get down to one of our 794 stores to see for yourself?

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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