Screen Sizes that Don’t Matter

Two things today: The sizes of the “real” AppleTV are supposed to be 32″-55″ (inclusive, i.e., multiple sizes) and iPhone betas have drivers for 1280×720 and 1440×800.

I’ll start with the iPhone one: since the iPhone 4 (technically the iPad 1) iOS has been capable of operating in “multiple monitors” extended mode (not mirrored) just like a MacBook. A4 devices could do at most 720p and A5 devices can do 1080p. If you’re a developer, you know that when you plug in another display (whether AirPlay, HDMI, VGA, or even with the component or composite adapters) you actually get an NSArray of available resolution. If you give it my native 1080p Dell to an iPad it’ll return 720×480, 640×480, 800×600, 1024×768, 1280×1024, 1280×720, and 1920×1080. (In iOS 5 and later you also get overscanning options). Now, when connected to my MacBook, I get a lot more. This is because the MacBook lists everything and the iOS trims the list to ones that are more likely. So a poorly translated “finding” is likely just code related to external display support. Furthermore, nothing has a resolution of 1440×800; the 15″ MacBook Pros and 13″ Air have 1440×900. But 1440×800 is actually wider than 16:9 so it’s just a nonsense number by a unreliable (and too many times translated) source.

Regarding the iTV screen sizes and reports of being priced at “double” comparable sets…

The 27″ Cinema display has the best 27″ panel around. It’s also in the Dell U2711 27″ IPS display. Apple’s costs $999, Dell’s $1099. There are some differences, more ports on the Dell, Apple’s is LED… but in reality, the so-called “Apple Tax” is dead. In fact, the new “Apple Tax” is actually regressive and gives Apple products a LOWER price for comparable (or better) products because Apple can outsell and thus take advantage of economies of scale.

Maybe the reason the Sony is taking a loss on all of their TV’s is because they have dozens of models with different panels, thus a small number of purchases from suppliers for any individual panel, thus a price to high to profit off of. So maybe Apple will have high prices compared to sets with TN panels at the same size, but compared to sets with the same LED lit IPS panel Apple’s will have a very similar, if not slightly lower cost, and they WILL make a profit.