DisplayMate: Galaxy Note 5 takes title of 'best smartphone display'

Samsung's newest stylus-friendly phone leapfrogs the previous year's Galaxy Note to grab the crown.

Samsung's Galaxy Note 5
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Samsung clearly knows how to make a killer smartphone display. The Galaxy Note 5 has the best-in-class display, according to a DisplayMate report comparing the screen capabilities of Samsung’s newest note and Galaxy S6 Edge+

The story behind the story: DisplayMate is well regarded as an authority on display technology for smartphones, monitors, televisions, and other screens. Company president Raymond Soneira publishes a thorough test of many flagship devices running Android and iOS. 

Galaxy Note 5 is the new king

Soneira’s report says the Galaxy Note 5 usurps the Note 4, which was tied with the Galaxy S6 as the previous holder of the title. The 5.7-inch, 2560x1440 display (with 518 pixels per inch) matches the Note 4 in basic specs, but offers better color properties and a brighter display with improved power efficiency.

The Note 5 also offers a higher Maximum Brightness setting than the previous edition, which is actually at its most potent when Automatic Brightness is flipped on. Also, the screen is 21 percent more power efficient than that on the Note 4. 

But Soneira notes that it’s time for Samsung and others to focus more on improving real-world display performance in ambient light, given they’ve maxed out the number of pixels per inch needed in a smartphone display.

“As a result, it is absolutely pointless to further increase the display resolution and pixels per inch (ppi) for a marketing wild goose chase into the stratosphere,” he says.

Galaxy S6 Edge+ still impresses

While the Note 5 was tops, Soneira also heaped praise on the Galaxy S6 Edge+. The primary focus of his analysis was in how Samsung is leading the pack when it comes to flexible displays. The Galaxy S6 Edge+, like it smaller sibling, has a display that curves on both sides of the device. 

Soneira says that this is just the beginning for how smartphones and other devices can use a curved display, and that the S6 Edge+ brings additional utility that should become more common in future devices.

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