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Users Want Matte LCDs While Glossy Screens Dominate

Unknown Lamer posted more than 3 years ago | from the the-doctor-says-they're-bad-for-my-adhd dept.

Displays 666

Barence writes "A survey of PC Pro readers suggests PC makers are out of touch when it comes to glossy vs matte screens. Almost three quarters of those surveyed said they preferred matte screens despite laptop makers moving almost exclusively to glossy screens. ... Why is the industry hell-bent on not giving customers what they want?"

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666 comments

It's all about sales (5, Insightful)

Sonny Yatsen (603655) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219780)

The reason they don't give customer matte LCDs is because shiny screens look nicer on photographs and on showroom floors because they look perfect and pristine and oh-so-high-tech. The customer will go to the showroom (with their nice, bright, and diffuse lighting) or see the photos online and they'll think: "Wow, that's shiny, it must be new and sleek" and then whip out their credit cards.

When they take it home, they'll complain about the glare, but that doesn't matter to the manufacturers and retailers because they already had your money at that point and they know that you probably wouldn't go to the trouble of returning the laptop just because there's a bit of glare on the screen. Meanwhile, you're stuck with your crappy super-specular screen and you're going to go through any sort of mental gymnastics necessary to justify not returning it. And then, the next time you need a new computer, the same process will begin anew because we, as consumers, are idiots.

Same with 1080p (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219886)

Why in the world anyone would choose a 1920x1080 monitor over 1920x1200 is beyond me. I can't wait until the day those bastard TV "monitors" die.

Re:Same with 1080p (2)

alta (1263) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219998)

amen brother. I have me a psuedo TV-Monitor,a samsung T260HD, we bought last year. Guess what, Native IS 1920*1200. I call it psuedo TV because it actually HAS a tuner in it, no computer needed.

We tried to get another this year but can't. It's been replaced with the newer betterrer model, the T270somethingornother... which maxes at 1920*1080.
What shit.

Re:Same with 1080p (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220032)

You're wrong here.

1050 was the shite format. It fit into no rational schema for sizing monitors and it was inadequate for native HDTV resolution. I'm certain it's because LCD, PC makers, and TV makers were colluding to keep the price of US-bound HDTVs high. The moment computers got 1080 height, they would take over from TVs as entertainment devices.

1080, on the other hand, is native HDTV, meaning I can do my computing at a perfectly useful resolution, and I can get pixel-perfect TV playback, with no letterboxing.

Re:Same with 1080p (1)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220196)

You might have a point there (not being a TV fan, I have not followed that story). But it should be obvious that 1920x1200 is even better:
It gives you 120 pixels more in vertical direction, which is nice for editing text. I won't switch my 1600x1200 for a 1920x1080 anytime soon.

Also, the 120 extra pixel could even be useful for movie playback, by putting on-screen controls there that don't obscure part of the movie's image.

Not for workstations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220198)

I'm guessing you do more TV watching than actual work. For a casual home computer user like yourself, that's fine. But let's be real: 1920x1080 has absolutely no place in the workplace unless your job is editing 1080 video.

It's economy of scale. (5, Insightful)

ZorinLynx (31751) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220260)

Even IF your job is editing 1080p video, 1200 is superior because you get room at the top and bottom for a scrub bar, and additional controls, without intruding on the image.

Computer displays should have stayed 1920x1200, but it's a lot cheaper just to make tons of 1920x1080 panels and use the same panels in both TVs and computer displays. Economies of scale.

I love my old Dell 2407WFP. 1920x1200 all the way, damnit.

Re:Same with 1080p (5, Insightful)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220248)

I would prefer 1920x1200, but 1080 vertical pixels are enough. 768 however, are not. THAT is the resolution I have issues with... 1366x768 is completely useless.

Re:Same with 1080p (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220262)

Because they are half the price for an otherwise equivalent display? I'm not paying double for black bars.

Re:It's all about sales (2)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219904)

Also: LCD screens are produced mainly in sizes and resolutions that are valuable for TV's and desktop monitors, and laptop makers typically just buy off-the-shelf sizes. And for TVs and desktop monitors, the glossy doesn't have the same downside. (Users just position it so that any glare isn't a problem.)

Re:It's all about sales (0)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220136)

Hmmm, seems you contradicted yourself in the space of two sentences.

If they have to position it to avoid glare then, by definition, glare IS a problem.

Re:It's all about sales (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220252)

I think you have reading comprehension issues. If you position a tv where there is no glare then glare is not a problem. If you position it where there is glare then it is a problem. In general, regardless of the type of screen people avoid putting their TVs where they will be hit with direct light anyway. Would it have made you feel better if he had said TV's are generally inside and stay in one place so positioning them to avoid glare is less of an issue than on a mobile device that gets used outside? Is projecting video a 'problem' because it's hard to see in the daylight. Not so much if it's a movie screen in a theater. More of a problem if you're trying to give a presentation in the park.

Re:It's all about sales (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219916)

We, as consumers, are idiots.

Stop being a consumer. Manufacture what you need. Personally, every time I hear the word "consumer", I think of an infant on a teat. When I think about the degree to which I am a consumer despite my best efforts not to be, I'm ashamed of myself.

Re:It's all about sales (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220002)

The problem is, when it costs billions of dollars to build an LCD plant...

Upshot is, I'm running a 5 year old laptop, so that I get a 15" 4:3 chassis, so I can run a matte 2048x1536 IPS display.

Re:It's all about sales (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220028)

That's a great idea; I'll just head to my local electronics store and whip up a nice 2048x1536 monitor with a 100hz refresh rate at max resolution and a HDMI input. I'm sure that won't be incredibly, *incredibly* difficult, or at all costly.

Re:It's all about sales (2)

Traegorn (856071) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220068)

We, as consumers, are idiots.

Stop being a consumer. Manufacture what you need. Personally, every time I hear the word "consumer", I think of an infant on a teat. When I think about the degree to which I am a consumer despite my best efforts not to be, I'm ashamed of myself.

So you build your own LCDs from scratch now? I'd love to see your hand crafted motherboard! :P

Re:It's all about sales (5, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220080)

And infant on a teat is getting an all-natural, perfectly balanced product, for free, that comes in a reusable and all but universally appealing container.

So maybe you should find another pejorative metaphor for "consumerism".

Couple other things too (5, Informative)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220094)

One is that glossy is brighter than matte. Matte screens do reduce the transmission of light. That is a reason laptops hopped on the glossy thing to early, more transmission means less power usage. Well in terms of things in the showroom, people like brighter screens. It is just now humans work. You'll prefer the brighter (or louder in the case of sound) of two otherwise identical objects.

Also glossy is easier to do right. It costs a little more money to do a good matte screen. Do it poorly and it can look way too grainy and so on. No, it isn't a big price difference but it is there and for cheap displays, pennies count.

What I tell people is if you care, get a high end monitor. They are better in all kinds of other ways too (like using a better panel technology that gives better colour and viewing angles) and with the pretty much sole exception of Apple, they are all matte. A Dell U2311 or U2410 are good choices for quality but not super expensive. Personally, I really like NEC's PA series. Serious cash, but they look great.

Glossy screens and sunlight (4, Funny)

mms3k (2192016) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219782)

The stupid thing with glossy screens is that they're completely unusable in the sun. Every year I spend half of the year in Thailand and want to get some work done by the pool, but it just isn't possible with a glossy screen. It's distracting and gives headaches. Now matte screen isn't that great in direct sunlight either, but even if you get some shadow for it glossy screen is completely unusable.

But other than that glossy screen really is better. The colors come out a lot nicer and more vibrant. So if you aren't like me who enjoys laying down at the pool watching beautiful thai ladyboys and drinking some beer while getting work done, just get a glossy screen. It's much better and nicer to look at.

What I've been wondering tho, since iPad 2 has glossy screen, does any of the Android ones have matte? iPad like device would suit me even better at the pool since laptop is still kind of a hassle to carry around and gets really hot in the sun. I was already going to buy an iPad, but people said it's unusable in sunlight too.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (2)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219832)

The stupid thing with glossy screens is that they're completely unusable in the sun. Every year I spend half of the year in Thailand and want to get some work done by the pool...

You know...as I was reading your post, my first thought was "who the hell works outside in the sun with a computer?", then, I read the next part about you wanting to work by the pool.

You're work habits, it sounds like, are definitely one of the far outlier scenarios if you were to look at the general pool of those that do work on a computer.

Man...wish I could do my job out by the pool somewhere. Sounds like the life....and the kind of complaints and problems one would LIKE to have.

:)

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219900)

You're work habits, it sounds like, are definitely one of the far outlier scenarios if you were to look at the general pool of those that do work on a computer.

I do work on my laptop on the bus ride to and from the office, and depending on which way the bus is headed relative to the sun, I get glare on the screen from the sunlight shining in through the windows. Am I also an outlier?

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220014)

You're work habits, it sounds like, are definitely one of the far outlier scenarios if you were to look at the general pool of those that do work on a computer.

I do work on my laptop on the bus ride to and from the office, and depending on which way the bus is headed relative to the sun, I get glare on the screen from the sunlight shining in through the windows. Am I also an outlier?

You need another job. And considering that employers will only hire folks who are currently employed (unemployed need not apply), you have a pretty good chance in moving up in the World.

Now, if you're working on the bus because you think it'll bring rewards .... yeah, whatever. I cannot convince you otherwise because you've obviously drank the Cool-Aid and you're not open to other opinions.

On the other hand, in this day and age, I'd be working 24/7 so that they don't can my sorry ass and hire a 20-something-year-old-knows-no-better-dweeb who WILL work 24/7 for MUCH less than me.

Scratch what I've said: you need to work more! Your ass is on the line, Dude!

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (1)

AAWood (918613) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220074)

See also; anyone who works by a window that gets any sun. While mms3k's exact circumstance might be rare, his complaint certainly isn't.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220108)

You're work habits, it sounds like, are definitely one of the far outlier scenarios if you were to look at the general pool of those that do work on a computer.

I do work on my laptop on the bus ride to and from the office, and depending on which way the bus is headed relative to the sun, I get glare on the screen from the sunlight shining in through the windows. Am I also an outlier?

The very definition of outlier.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220210)

Not everyone lives in a basement with their mothers, some of us have to deal with natural light through these things called "windows" and unfortunately I can't install Linux onto my wall to replace it.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220072)

So the real problem is: how do we get the ladyboys to the general pool?

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (1)

SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220100)

How about those who work in offices, and they have floor to ceiling glass windows behind them. Not an unusual situation at all.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219910)

"watching beautiful thai ladyboys"

Slashdot Protip: Use the "Post Anonymously" option liberally.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220026)

Some people aren't afraid of what others think of their tastes. These people give me some hope for the future of human society.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220076)

Institutionalized prostitution and general pederasty give you hope for mankind? I wish the world really had been destroyed this past weekend.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (1)

mms3k (2192016) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220160)

Why do you think that all ladyboys are prostitutes? It's kind of like saying all women are whores.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220216)

In the first place, there is nothing wrong with prostitution inherently. There are better and worse ways of approaching it as an institution/industry, but dismissing it out of hand reflexively is neither rational nor considered.

In the second place, while there are numerous instances of the sexual abuse of minors in Thailand and that is deplorable, 'ladyboys' despite the name are more frequently adults. I rather expect you are too ignorant of the subject to be moralizing about it.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (2)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220046)

The stupid thing with glossy screens is that they're completely unusable in the sun.

Actually, I would say the opposite is true. Matte screens are completely unusable in sunlight because they wash out to the point that you can't see anything. With glossy screens, they are usable outdoors, so long as the sun is not directly behind you. You can adjust the angle to get the hot spot to disappear. With a matte screen, you get a washed out view at any angle.

I use my glossy-screened iPhone outside all the time. By contrast, my TomTom's matte screen from about the same year is almost completely unreadable at certain times of day.

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220088)

DJ, is that you?

Re:Glossy screens and sunlight (5, Funny)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220240)

I checked your comments -- both of them mention ladyboys. I challenge you to mention ladyboys in every comment you make from here on out -- It would be epic.

If you need help you could just use ladyboys instead of cars for your analogies.

Shiny Sells (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219798)

Users want to use matte, but are initially attracted to shiny screens which make the images displayed seem more vivid. So shiny sells.

Maybe, but.. (5, Insightful)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219808)

1) PC Pro readers probably don't represent the general population.

2) There's always a difference between what people say they want, and what they actually end up buying when given the choice. They may actually want matte screens, but purchase based on different criteria such as "oh, shiney!" once they're actually on the spot.

3) I'm pretty sure device manufacturers are doing more robust consumer research than PC Pro.

Re:Maybe, but.. (4, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220188)

1) and /. readers do! FTW!

2) when i go into the store for raspberries, i often come out with raspberries. when i go to the store for matte screens, if i come out with a glossy screen (and yes this did happen last time i shopped for a foldable) it's because "yuck! all the ones with matte screens are 18 months out of date". i ended up with one that pretty much only had the screen issue as a flaw, and came at a sick price ($650 for what at the time should have been $1k worth of kit).

3) once the marketing cost function falls into the wrong attractor it takes a rather large bump to sinter it into another, and in a low-energy process like mature-product marketing there isn't much chance of large bumps. the impressiong of continuous change comes from "game changer" product improvements that may not be in the part of the computer you've been wanting improved. glossy screens and blue LEDs on random parts could be here for a long while.

People are stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219822)

Because, people are stupid. They see shiny and their brains go into neutral.

Re:People are stupid (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219912)

For a similar effect, show a Space Nutter a picture of a rocket and watch those neurons die!

Re:People are stupid (1)

ynp7 (1786468) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219958)

Bullshit! I see shiny and my brain into top gear. VvvvvvvvvvvvRrrrrrrrrrrrrOooooooooooooMmmmmmmmm!!!!!!!!!! SHINY!!!!!!!!

Re:People are stupid (1)

EraserMouseMan (847479) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220064)

This explains Apple's product strategy. Their products look so glossy and shiny. Even a mac book air suddenly becomes an impulse buy.

Re:People are stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220102)

Much like the GNOME 3 developers, the screen manufacturers know what the users want better than the users themselves know. If the users want matte screens, well, the users are wrong. Only glossy screens should be available, to prevent users choosing wrong.

Old, you bet! (3, Insightful)

attah (1217454) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219826)

This should have been news 5 years ago :(

Cheaper? (1)

brennanw (5761) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219850)

I figured glossy screens were cheaper to manufacture in mass quantities, so they became the new standard. I have no idea if that's true or not. I too miss the matte lcd screens, even though the colors aren't usually as bright I find the screens are easier to look at in almost any lighting.

Re:Cheaper? (1)

gweihir (88907) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220086)

Look at manufacturers of business notebooks, like Lenovo. I doubt they even have glossy models. And, yes, glossy is cheaper.

Re:Cheaper? (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220220)

Even lenovo is finally being forced to gradually shift.
the X1 has a glossy screen, and the new T series is 16:9 instead of 16:10

Off and on (1)

Dan East (318230) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219852)

I guess because it's more important for the screen to look sleek when it's off than to function optimally when it's on?

Re:Off and on (1)

shadowfaxcrx (1736978) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220228)

Uh. Yes. Do you live in the USA? ;)

This country's all about form over function, even when the form gives false impressions as to the function.

See: Wings/tail fins/fender holes on cars, false fronts on buildings, iPods that you can't change the battery on because someone thought screws are ugly, botox, breast implants, TV news, food photography, politics, and the Star Wars prequels.
If given a choice between doing the job right and doing the job to look good, 9 times out of 10 people will pick what looks good.

Re:Off and on (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220254)

Glossy screens look futuramic because of the glare. They also give a significantly crisper picture. Side-by-side with matte screens, the glossy screens pop.

So the glare works ironically, while the pop sells you what you desire.

But if the screen is already matte... (2)

misaltas (1293498) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219858)

But if the screen is already matte to begin with, you can't sell adhesive matte sheets for $20 a pop.

Re:But if the screen is already matte... (4, Insightful)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220084)

Or sell matte displays for a $50 upgrade premium. And if most people really want the anti-glare display, then chances are they're willing to just pay the $50 rather than hate their laptop forever.

I hate those shiny pieces of shit... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219868)

...and whatever dipshit that invented them.

Say one thing and do another (1)

cforciea (1926392) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219872)

The reason might be that consumers claim they want matte screens but they go and buy glossy screens. Manufacturers are probably substantially less interested in what these surveys say than what their sales numbers say.

Re:Say one thing and do another (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220020)

From browsing laptops online, 99% of sites wont even list the screen as glossy or matte. Dell used to give you the option in some cases, last laptop i looked at via dell didn't have that option though.

What about non-widescreen laptops? (2)

Noughmad (1044096) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219876)

I realize that shiny sells, but I still don't understand why I can't buy a 4:3 laptop these days. Everyone I talk to says he'd prefer one to the current wide-screen offering. Do people really only use computers for watching movies?

I just bought a new HP ProBook with 1366x768 resolution, but at least it has a matte screen.

Re:What about non-widescreen laptops? (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219992)

Do people really only use computers for watching movies?

Probably

see http://www.ideastorm.com/ideaView?id=087700000008WhXAAU [ideastorm.com]

and

http://www.ideastorm.com/ideaView?id=087700000000knXAAQ [ideastorm.com]

(my idea for non widescreens actually got voted down to -10 (The 2nd link) , so you know that a majority of those on ideastorm prefer widescreens)

Re:What about non-widescreen laptops? (4, Interesting)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220042)

Laptop manufacturers discovered that their keyboards fit better with widescreen displays.

It used to be laptop keyboards were always cramped. with widescreen displays they keyboards are just that much bigger and it looks better too.

though I do I agree with you. I miss my 12" Powerbook. small lightweight yet still useful.

To bring back onto topic. I am waiting for mirasol display tech to catch up with LCD's . Low power and daylight readable here we come.

Re:What about non-widescreen laptops? (2)

Glendale2x (210533) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220092)

Because "widescreen HD" means "best and newest" to the uninitiated. They aren't really aware that computers had resolutions far beyond "HD" a long time before the HDTV became common. So while an HD widescreen LCD is a downgrade to those of us who had higher resolution 4x3 monitors (which are now hard to find), it is a perceived upgrade to everyone else.

Also, yes, a lot of people who don't work with a computer - whether it be for a living or for fun - usually do one of three things: Office, Internet Explorer, or watch movies.

Re:What about non-widescreen laptops? (3, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220150)

I realize that shiny sells, but I still don't understand why I can't buy a 4:3 laptop these days. Everyone I talk to says he'd prefer one to the current wide-screen offering. Do people really only use computers for watching movies?

In practice, most users find that width is more important than height. You have two documents. Do you place one beside the other, or one above the other? Most people put them beside one another. The only thing extra height buys you is seeing more of a single document at once, and beyond a certain point (usually a couple of paragraphs), this turns out to not be a significant benefit for most people.

The people who benefit significantly from taller screens are mostly people reading books—a task for which a portrait mode display (such as an iPad) would be more appropriate.

In other words, it's another case where what users say they want isn't necessarily what would actually serve their needs best.

for the same reason they're all widescreen now (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219880)

You can almost not find laptops with normal aspect ratio monitors any more. 10 years ago I bought a laptop with 1600x1200 resolution. Even desktop LCDs are vanishingly rare any more except in widescreen.

Yet people prefer widescreen for TVs, not for monitors, where it's inferior for almost every common task such as web browsing, email, or programming, where vertical space is critical. A laptop can't be easily used on its side!

Same thing: there is demand for normal aspect ratio laptops, but there are almost none available.

Re:for the same reason they're all widescreen now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220052)

Answering you and the post above: sorry but I think the 4x3 ratio is dead and buried and I don't mind at all. It's a vestige of CRTs from the days when blowing a glass tube made wider resolutions more costly/difficult/impossible.

My first laptop was 4x3 and I think it looks just plain weird now. As to losing vertical space: if you go from 1600x1200 to 1920x1200, you haven't lost a thing. In my case my first laptop was 1024x768, and now my newest laptop is 1366x768. No change in vertical resolution at all. If I wanted 1024x768 I'm sure I could get that with either 1) a display setting tweak, or 2) a strip of duct tape.

Re:for the same reason they're all widescreen now (1)

smelch (1988698) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220172)

I find horizontal space to be way way more valuable, as horizontal scrolling is generally a bad thing to do, and vertical scrolling is on everything. This is also why generally there is a verticle scroll wheel on mice but no horizontal unless you click the wheel first.

Re:for the same reason they're all widescreen now (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220190)

Yet the iPad is not widescreen and Android users long for tablets that are widescreen

Bad HP Glossy screen (1)

SuperTechnoNerd (964528) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219882)

I have an HP notebook, its fast and reliable but the glossy screen is real bad.
Perhaps if I sand blast the screen it will make it more matte. ;)

Re:Bad HP Glossy screen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220214)

I have an HP notebook, its fast and reliable but the glossy screen is real bad.

Perhaps if I sand blast the screen it will make it more matte. ;)

Yep, I want to try that too on my HP's glossy screen.

Seriously, can you do a sandpaper test on your screen and tell us if its worth it?

(No, I won't go first!)

Blame the iPhone (2)

fliptw (560225) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219890)

*nt

KNOWLEDGABLE Users want matte (most of the time) (2)

eepok (545733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219922)

Of course "matte" will win in a survey of people who read a PC magazine or frequent PC sites. They know what they want and why they want it. Survey people running around Best Buy looking for a new email machine and they'll want shiny because shiny = new and new = representative of affluence (but not class). Just look at the stylings of kitchen and bathroom fixtures, appliances, and wares.

Note that these less-knowledgeable shiny-mongers also think that their monitors are no longer good when their "computers slow down" (thus requiring them to buy new ones) and don't reuse those monitors for newer builds. They toss it out or give it away only to buy another.

They should have also asked of the audience, "How frequently do you purchase new monitors?" and "Where do you buy them?"

Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219930)

"Why is the industry hell-bent on not giving customers what they want?"

So they can sell you the version that you _do_ want in a year or two. Otherwise you might actually get happy with the computer you have and not buy another one for a while, they don't like that.

SHINY!!!! (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219954)

this further proves shiny stuff is what most people will buy regardless of what they want.

perhaps everything should have either a mirror finish, or be fluorescent blue/green/red/pink in colour for it to get a majority marketshare

Money, that's why (1)

SengirV (203400) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219960)

Why give something to the customer for "free", when you can charge for a customer built machine with a matte screen?

I suspect the trend will be coming to the auto industry very soon - Oh you want four wheels? That'll cost ya extra.
How about the airline industry. A trip to New York will cost you $500. Oh you want to land safely once you get there? That'll cost you extra.
etc...

imac needs it or a midtower mac (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219962)

imac needs it or a midtower mac with a good cpu and good GPU.

Not a mini with low end cpu small slow 5400 RPM HDD and on board video.

physics (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36219966)

It's the laws of physics, as they relate to sales.

Glossy surfaces tend toward deeper blacks. This in turn gives better shadow detail, wider gamut, and a steeper gamma curve (aka contrast ratio). Which in turn makes the image on the screen pop. Which in turn leads to better sales numbers.

Matte screens are, in comparison, dull and lifeless.

But in the "real world" of uncontrolled lighting, ceiling fluorescent strips, and glare everywhere, matte screens are easier to read and easier to use. People who have some experience with the devices want matte screens. People who are first buying the devices want glossy screens.

And therein lies the problem.

Less Glare from Glossy (3, Insightful)

fast turtle (1118037) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219976)

I'm sorry but the glossy screen is actually easier to use in bright lighting conditions. The reason for this is pretty effen simple: The glare is constrained to a very limited area and does not wash out the entire screen as those so called Anti-Glare have happen.

Sorry but if I get a laptop, I much rather have the gloss screen for just that reason because lighting is to damn erratic instead of being diffused like in the stinking showrooms.

Re:Less Glare from Glossy (1)

ISoldat53 (977164) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220144)

Doh!

shinyness (1)

Twinbee (767046) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219980)

Reminds me of the widescreen fiasco, and something I tend to be slightly bitter about (regardless of the rectangle-ness of our overall view of the world, what isn't considered is that our accuracy of colour/detail/shape perception when we concentrate on something without looking directly at it, is proportional to the distance from our direct line of sight, so a square TV would be ideal in that sense).

Glossy screens affect even everyone who's aware of the problem, because purchasing say a laptop becomes much more tricky. When all is said and done, people have to be vote with their wallets if they don't like the pathetic "oooh- it shines! shiny-shiny-ness". Sanity will prevail, even if it takes a while.

Dell? (1)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219982)

Does Dell use glossy screens now? I have an older Dell with a traditional widescreen(16:10, WSXGA+) that is matte, and it's great. The only glossy screens I've seen are the newer HP model types you see at Best Buy and Costco, but can't go there to check Dells

Re:Dell? (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220004)

The consumer series does use glossy stuff (Inspiron,XPS)

1366x768 (1)

Lazy Jones (8403) | more than 3 years ago | (#36219986)

They also use mostly crappy 1366x768 pixel displays on 13-15" laptops where decent 1920x1200 pixel displays have been available for years. Apparently it makes laptops $300+ cheaper, but is the sub-$500 (i.e. throw away after 1 year) laptop business really even profitable when people pay more than that for an iPad 2? What's next, a low-resolution touchscreen display instead of a real keyboard (Nintendo DS style)?

The way products are marketed... inches matter (1)

MetalliQaZ (539913) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220012)

Just like Intel's GHz, most people only buy based on easily understood numbers. Bigger = better. By my understanding, glossy screens are cheaper to produce. Therefore, the user can pay less for their 17" screen. Same with 1080i vs 720p. Another grossly under-reported feature of LCD is the viewing angle. Poor quality screens on bargin laptops are unbelievably terrible. I find that these screens are impossible to configure such that the colors look correct on both the top and bottom of the screen at the same time. Refresh rate, dot pitch, they all get thrown out for that diagonal viewing area number. Don't get me started on trying to use office applications on a 16:9 screen. The vertical resolution is just... pathetic.
-d

Gloss is the current fad (1)

wiredlogic (135348) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220022)

Glossy screens are needed to match the glossy plastic cases that most consumer electronics are packaged in these days. This is all part of the latest fad in product design. Remember when everyone was copying the iMac candy colors with translucent plastic bits and pieces a few years ago? Now everyone is copying Apple's current styling. It will fade away once people realize how unsightly that stuff is when it gathers dust.

Re:Gloss is the current fad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220192)

Apple's current computer style emphasizes brushed steel cases; they gave up shiny cases for computers years ago (with the exception of the sole, bottom of the barrel MacBook). Unfortunately, though, Apple still makes glossy screens the default option and in some cases the only option.
 
My year-and-a-half old MB Pro is the first laptop I've had with a glossy screen and I will never, ever, ever, ever buy one again. I never before had significant eye strain issues, and now am almost certainly going to have to get glasses. Unfortunately I can't afford to trade in my laptop for a new one -- I tried to after the first few months of ownership and it would have been a $700 bath -- so right now I'm just hoping to hold out a few more month before I should get some significant income.
 
I just don't understand how anyone can think that a screen that reflects back a doubled reflection (one is less visible, but shifted) on top of whatever screen image isn't going to severely fuck with the ability for eyes to focus when there isn't that doubling in normal life. Seriously, lawyers may want to get a study done as there could be big bucks in a lawsuit. The only reason I bought the glossy screen in the first place was because I needed a laptop immediately and this was all they had in stock at the Apple Store.

Solution: Matte LCD Cover (2)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220050)

Skip the article and just look at the pictures.
Anti-Glare Matte Screen cover review [notebookreview.com]

Glossy is cheaper (0)

gweihir (88907) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220054)

That is why the industry is also hell-bent on "educating" users that glossy is better. It is not. The solution is simple: Refuse to buy glossy.

do they even know what matte vs glossy means? (1)

schlachter (862210) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220062)

Just wondering if the average tech illiterate knows what they are choosing by saying they prefer matte over glossy in a phone or online survey. A better experiment would be to present them with two options...laptops with matte screens and laptops with glossy screens...and see which they select.

Kind of like capitalism. Oh, wait, they're selecting glossy?

consumers are stupid! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220070)

when you want a matte screen do not buy a glossy one. problem solved.

Re:consumers are stupid! (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220168)

A lot of the time, consumers want laptops. While they may prefer a matte screen, the limited options may mean that their best choice has a glossy screen

The main benefit of glossy... (1)

Jargon Scott (258797) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220090)

Those fuckers in my office can't sneak up on me anymore.

Because industry knows best (1)

smooth wombat (796938) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220112)

Why is the industry hell-bent on not giving customers what they want?"

As the title says, industry knows best. One can use nearly any product that has come out in the last ten years and see the same scenario.

Windows 7: No way to see every program installed on your PC in one location, twice as many steps to complete simple tasks, making Programs a flat file rather than seeing everything in one shot (sound familiar?).

Cars: getting rid of stick shifts despite better fuel mileage and better safety (ok, this is mainly due to laziness of Americans who want to talk on their cell phones while driving ghetto style), complicated radio "features", a myriad of bells (literally) going off at every moment to warn you of nothing of importance going on.

Washing machines and dryers: Internet connection (really? They're washer and dryers), an explosion of settings (most of which are never used).

Software: enough said. If there is a time consuming and complicated way of doing something, a programmer will find it. Games which cheat in single-player? Yup. There are numerous forums dedicated to games of all types where this occurs but the developers will deny everything despite evidence to the contrary.

The fact of the matter is, the industry doesn't care what people want. The industry will tell you what you want. Don't want some doo-dad or widget in your car? Tough. It comes standard. Can't find how to turn something off? Sorry, it's a "feature" (yeah Adobe, your X pdf reader is guilty of this with its permanent splash screen). Want something simple? Ha! You have two choices: nothing or everything. There is no middle ground.

What the user wants is irrelevant. You must take what you are given and be glad about it.

At least not on desktops (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220122)

I'm just happy that the glossy screen madness hasn't taken over the desktop PC market (yet).

Re:At least not on desktops (1)

Robadob (1800074) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220166)

Yes but desktops don't get used in direct sunlight anyway, which is one of the main reasons for wanting matte laptop screens.

Re:At least not on desktops (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220278)

You may still have badly placed lights

I bought anti-glare screen for my latest laptop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220148)

My previous laptop had a glossy screen. I hated it. There was always an image of the stuff over my shoulder pissing me off. I had to close the window blinds to keep it from being completely unusable.

When I went shopping for my latest laptop I made sure to find out if the screen was glossy or anti-glare and made sure I got the anti-glare one. Now I don't have to close the blinds.

I noticed at the local Microcenter that flat-panels in their display have slowly been shifting toward more anti-glare. It might be because customers are seeing the overhead fluorescents reflected in the glossy screens.

Sandpaper works great (5, Funny)

bl8n8r (649187) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220184)

I find that 600 grit carbide emery cloth works great to reduce the glare.  -BOFH

Because that's what the consumers want. (1)

hachre (981066) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220200)

The readers of a PC magazine is not the target market of PC markers. Sad but true. The mass market are customers that don't read a PC magazine, and I know nobody from that group of people who DON'T want a glossy screen.

Wide aspect ratios are an even bigger problem (1)

NumberField (670182) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220202)

Glossy vs. matte is a minor issue compared to the ever-widening aspect ratios. Except for watching movies, the usefulness of a screen is determined by its vertical size. The 4:3 aspect ratio is by far the most useful. 16:10 is dramatically worse. 16:9 is an evil plot to prevent computer users from doing their jobs. Yet, the LCD industry is increasingly cranking out displays that are wider and shorter. The pinnacle of laptop displays was the Thinkpad T60's FlexView (aka IPS) 1600x1200 display. It's all been downhill since then. Interestingly, though, Apple seems to have figured this out. The 4:3 aspect ratio IPS display on the iPad is gorgeous -- and the right aspect ratio. The iPad display is a classic example of what makes Apple successful -- they push component manufacturers to produce what consumers desire, as opposed to assembling the cheapest components into an cheap, inelegant commodity product.

It's all about refraction! (5, Interesting)

Anaerin (905998) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220208)

Glossy screens reflect ambient light back at the same angle at which it hits the screen, which means when there is light shining on them they're next to useless. However, when there isn't direct light, they allow for much deeper blacks and higher contrast.

Matte screens, on the other hand, scatter ambient light and reflect it back at all angles, thus diminishing the amount of light. So when there's a light shining on them, you can still see the image on-screen. But this also means that all ambient light is reflected back, no matter the direction of the light as it hits the screen, leading to much weaker blacks and less contrast.

While consumers love the non-reflective nature of matte screens, they prefer the higher contrast and darker black level of a glossy screen much more, and are typically willing to sacrifice occasional reflections for better picture quality.

I do note, however, that there is a kind of glass that's (almost) entirely non-reflective. Head down to your local picture framing place (Michaels, for certain, has it) and take a look. Quite why this glass/coating isn't in use on LCD screens right now, I have no idea.

However, there may be a new option on the horizon: Japanese scientists have manufactured a "screen" for projectors that only reflects light beamed on it from a certain angle. So if you have a projector on the floor pointing up, it'll reflect the projector's light out into the room, but not the light from the overhead fluorescent tubes.

Graphene panels or QLED to the rescue? (1)

Twinbee (767046) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220226)

Well, maybe there's another use for those graphene panels, as they're supposed to be extremely strong, and virtually invisible.

What I'm slightly confused is why we really need a coating at all. Okay it protects it to a degree, but there's got to be a better material which doesn't scatter or reflect light. Heck, my glasses seem to do a much better job of avoiding reflections.

Maybe OLED or QLED will reduce the need for a coating?

Same old ... (1)

alexandre (53) | more than 3 years ago | (#36220258)

Same reason as LCD / Plasma... in store contrast appearance...

Dell 30'' Owner - Wants Glassy Here (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36220276)

Maybe I'm doing it wrong but I much prefer glassy over matte. The matte on my 30'' screen makes light colored areas look sparkly (I'm sure it has a term, but ???), I'm fairly certain this doesn't happen on glassy screens.

As far as the glare issue, not a problem - I can close my blinds.

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