Editors' note: If you've already read "Battle Royale: Five smartphones face off" or "Battle Royale 2: The Quickening" (OK, it wasn't actually called "The Quickening"), then you may experience some deja vu when reading this article. We've used the same tests and presented the article in the same style. Only the phones in question and the details of their performance have changed. Because of some technical difficulties on the back-end our How We Test Smartphone Displays page isn't up yet, but hopefully, by Round 4 it will be.
In the last six months I've tested 10 different smartphone displays, including the three new ones presented today. The response from both Android and iPhone fans has been interesting, if not unexpected. I assume this round will be no different. Once again, using DisplayMate Multimedia Edition for Mobile Displays, I put each phone through a battery of tests.
In our last roundup, we received some reader complaints for comparing the iPhone 4 to the original Droid and HTC Evo and not the Droid X or Droid incredible. Both of which hadn't been released at the time of last round's testing.
Well, today is a new day and with that comes the promise of a more robust evaluation (or so the saying goes). For Round 3, not only do we have the iPhone 4, but also the Motorola Droid X, the HTC Droid Incredible, and the Samsung Epic 4G. These were the most-requested phones according to the comments and e-mails from the previous round.
Like in previous roundups, we used three different types of tests to evaluate each phone:
Scientific measurements: We used the Konica Minolta CS-200 ChromaMeter to test the maximum brightness, black level, and contrast ratio of each phone and reported numbers for each of these three tests.
Test pattern screens: We used several DisplayMate Mobile test patterns to test for color-tracking errors, 24-bit color, and font legibility, among others.
Real-world: We conducted real-world anecdotal testing using 3D games, photos, and a little tool I like to call "the sun" to test the diffuse reflectance of each display.
All test screens were viewed within each phone's native gallery application. Some phones may handle pictures differently--and even improve them to some extent--outside the gallery application. That said, we believe that testing within the respective gallery applications is still a viable test, as this is where most users will view pictures on their phones.
In order to diminish potential repetition, I'll dive right into the details of how each phone performed; if you'd like to know more about our tests, you can binge on nerdy details in our "How we tested" section at the bottom of this article. Please note that this is an evaluation of each phone's screen performance and nothing else. Check out the full reviews of these phones to determine which is right for you. Also, DisplayMate will soon be posting a more technically focused evaluation of the iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S (same screen as the Epic 4G) screens that I'm sure will be worth checking out.
The bottom line… Read more