Problems with the New iPad’s Retina Display

Ever since the new iPad was released, extravagant praise has been heaped on the Retina display. This was the major selling point, not just in Apple’s marketing but also in the eyes of most consumers. A fairly recent survey revealed that of all the features of the new iPad, the Retina display was the one users liked best.

But it has not been without its issues. A CNN article at the end of March argued that the Retina display makes some magazines look bad. Or, to put it another way, many magazines are not optimized to look good on this new iPad screen. For instance, with the New Yorker’s iPad application some of the text is actually displayed as HTML or (in some cases) as an image file. Apparently, the images have not been formatted in the right way to accommodate the resolution on the new iPad (2048 x 1536 pixels).

Nor is the issue confined to the New Yorker. Magazines such as Sports Illustrated and Time are also said to be rendering poorly on the new iPad. According to CNN’s findings, only Vogue have managed to avoid the issue (their iPad edition was released at exactly the same time as the new iPad).

Magazines will be working hard to optimize their digital content for the new iPad’s display over the coming weeks. In addition, in order to emulate the success of Vogue, other magazines will have to export their digital editions in the form of PDFs. Unfortunately, this process creates issues of its own, mainly in terms of file size.

Anyone who invests in the new iPad will find that magazine files are significantly larger on their tablet than they might have hoped or expected. Ironically, those who buy ipad 2 tablets will have a better experience, since a 400 megabyte magazine on the new iPad turns out to be less than 300 megabytes on the first and second generation tablets. As a result, iPad 2 users will be able to store more magazines on their tablet than owners of the new iPad. And, in the meantime, the quality of the visuals will actually be higher on the iPad 2, due (again ironically) to its lower resolution display.

What does this mean for the new iPad? Well, it was only to be expected that such a high-resolution display would come with certain issues. Apps have to be updated, publications need to adapt, and online tools need to be adjusted so as to accommodate the 2048 x 1536 pixels on the new iPad. In some cases, one can be sure that it will take a little time for third-parties to catch up and take advantage of the new display. And new iPad owners may have to suffer a little whilst the updates are in progress. Fortunately for them, the quality of the screen more than makes up for this and was recently voted “best feature” on the new iPad.

Author Bio: Patty Renault is an Apple fan and guest blogger who writes about almost anything related to Apple.

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