DisplayMate: iPhone XS has the best display in the history of best displays

The iPhone XS Max has the best display in the history of best displays. I don't mean that to sound blasé or sarcastic. Apple's teams, from silicon to industrial design to display technologies did a tremendous job on it.

There's just something hinky about how these shootouts appear, and switch between Apple and Samsung, every quarter. It's why I've always preferred AnandTech's display tests. Sadly, though, they don't seem to get those out regularly, if at all, any more.

From DisplayMate:

Apple has continued to raise the on-screen Absolute Picture Quality and Absolute Color Accuracy of their displays by implementing Precision Factory Display Calibration, moving the overall iPhone XS Max display performance up to Record Setting Outstanding levels, and setting many new Display Performance Records, including Absolute Color Accuracy at a very impressive 0.8 JNCD that is Visually Indistinguishable From Perfect, and almost certainly considerably better than your existing Smartphone, 4K UHD TV, Tablet, Laptop and computer monitor. The iPhone XS Max also has a Record High Full Screen Brightness for OLED Smartphones of 660 nits, considerably brighter than most OLED and LCD Smartphones.Compared to the original iPhone X, the iPhone XS Max has notable improvements including higher Full Screen Brightness and higher Absolute Color Accuracy, all the more impressive because its display is 22% larger in Screen Area, which is more challenging to manufacture.

Subjectively, iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max have unbelievably good looking and, to my eye, color accurate displays. Objectively, I wish there were many more places that performed rigorous display testing.

Either way, DisplayMate's is worth a glance.

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Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • I will start believing this guy the day he walks into an apple store and buys his own phone for testing instead of testing the phone apple has preselected and “provided “ to him. My Xs Max and many others (check forums) has a terrible yellow tint right next to my x and iPad.
  • Good morning.
    Well, saying that Apple has the best display does not mean they don't also have occasional quality issues. No assembly line is perfect and that is why review units are selected to be representative of the quality standard.
    So maybe yours just need to be taken back to an Apple store. I am not sure how they would check that, however, but that is their problem.
  • I don't get this from Displaymate. Note 9 beats the Xs in more than 80% of all categories apart from 3: *Brightness decrease under 30 degree angle (25% vs 27% Note 9)
    *Color shift ( 0.1/0.3/0.8 vs 0.2/0.7/1.2 Note 9)
    *Higher brightness manual mode For the rest the iPhone Xs has: *Lower PPI (458 vs 516)
    *Higher reflectance (4.7/5.7 vs 4.4/5.6)
    *Lower brightness in all categories apart from all white screen (725/695/766 vs 825/710/1050)
    *Lower dynamic brightness (Good vs Excellent)
    *Lower image contrast accuracy (very good vs excellent)
    *Lower white color accuracy (0.4 vs 0.1 / lower is better)
    *Lower color gamuth (103 vs 142)
    *Lower color accuracy average color error(0.8 vs 0.5 / lower is better)
    *Lower color accuracy largest color error (2.3 vs 1.2 / lower is better)
    *Higher white point color shift (2.6 very good vs 1.3 excellent / lower is better)
    *Higher Primary color shift (6.2 good vs 3.9 very good / lower is better)
    *Higher color shift color mixtures (1.9 vs 1.8)
    *Less power efficient in all catergories (2.2/ 1.8/4.2/3.3 watt vs 1.1/1.25/2.10/2.13 watt) All the categories are even green on the Note 9 while iPhone Xs has 2 yellow boxes meaning it performed lower/average. I'm sorry, but how could Displaymate call the Xs a better display exactly?? It seriously seems Apple paid Displaymate to market the Xs despite the fact the results both on paper and in real (look up youtube comparisons) tell a different story. Very dirty marketing this.