10 Different Types of Smartphone Displays

The technology used in the modern day smartphones have progressed significantly thanks to the rising competition. Apart from the basic features such as the camera quality, onboard storage, and sound quality, your mobile phone display is another area that needs maximum attention. For those new in the smartphone world, there are several different types of screen displays available across a vast range of smartphones. To ensure that you get to know more about them (including what their abbreviations mean), this article will round up 10 different types of smartphone displays available in the market.

Types of Smartphone Displays


TFT LCD simply means Thin Film Transistor Liquid Crystal Display. A technology that has gained recognition in the Smartphone market, the TFT LCD is used in most budget Smartphones due to its affordability during Smartphone manufacture. Although this technology offers a higher resolution as compared to the earlier LCD display, users are expected to experience poor visibility in direct sunlight or areas with excessive light.

Another severe case with these displays is that they consume a lot of energy leading to poor battery life especially in Smartphones with large displays.


Another type of Smartphone display we’re going to discuss is the IPS-LCD. An abbreviation for In-Place Switching, the IPS mobile phone display is superior to the TFT thanks to some notable improvements such as wide viewing angles and low power consumption. Due to its high cost of production, this display is common in most top of the range Smartphones such as Apple’s iPhone 4. Smartphones using this display deliver brilliant quality pictures with an improved battery life.

3. Resistive touchscreen LCD

Ever heard of the resistive touchscreen display? Well, sit back and listen. The resistive touchscreen is one brilliant display that’s designed with a double layer of conductive materials with a small space left in between. When the screen is touched, the two layers merge leading to a complete circuit. This action sends a command to the phone’s OS triggering an action at the point of touch.

Comparing the resistive touchscreen to the capacitive touchscreen display, it’s evident that the former is less responsive and is found in most budget touch phones.

4. Capacitive touchscreen LCD

Quite different from the resistive touchscreen, capacitive screens are coated with a layer of transparent conductor (most commonly the Indium Tin Oxide). When the touchscreen is touched by the human finger, the electrostatic field screen sends a command to the phone’s OS which in return responds to the command.

Capacitive touchscreen displays are more responsive providing a better user experience as compared to resistive screens. Due to this reason, this touchscreen technology is used by most high-end Smartphones thanks to its simplicity and responsiveness.


Ever heard of the OLED screen display? Well, this is a newer Smartphone display that has elevated the touchscreen technology to a new level. With initials that stand for Organic Light Emitting Diode, the OLED consist of a carbon-based organic material that is sandwiched between two layers of sheets namely the anode and cathode. These two layers are then sandwiched between two glass plates at the top and bottom (seal and substrate).

When the screen of an OLED Smartphone is touched, the two conducting sheets send the respective commands to the OS at a faster pace leading to a blazing fast response time. This Smartphone technology produces exceptional bright colors and wide viewing angles making it the best for high-end Smartphone devices.


Another type of Smartphone display that has gained popularity among most mobile phone manufactures is the AMOLED. A name that simply stands for Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode, these screen displays have the properties of OLED screens only that they’re more upgraded to improve quality and response time. AMOLED screens display images with brilliant colors and a high level of brightness and sharpness. Designed to offer lots of other brilliant quality feature, the AMOLED Smartphone display has rapidly gained popularity in the Smartphone world making it the preferred screen display for most top of the range Smartphones.

7. Super AMOLED

This advanced technology was developed by Samsung to feature in some of their top of the range Smartphones. An advanced version of the AMOLED display, the Super AMOLED mobile phone display consists of a touch response layer placed on the top display itself to improve response time and image quality. Since the display is super thin, this Smartphone technology consumes less battery power making it the perfect option for most expensive Smartphones such as the Galaxy SIII.

8. Heptic/Tactile Touchscreen

Another type of Smartphone display we can’t forget to mention is the Heptic/Tactile touchscreen. This technology is designed to offer a higher level of accuracy when a touchscreen is touched. Due to its accuracy, Heptic/Tactile touchscreen is used by top of the range Smartphones such as Blackberry and Nokia for business purposes.

9. Retina

Retina is another technical term used by Apple to refer to their high-resolution IPS-LCD backlit LED screen displays commonly used by the iPhone 4. The reason why this technology is named Retina is because the pixels cannot be identified by the naked eye thus making the image quality super sharp.

10. Gorilla Glass

Ever heard of Gorilla Glass? Well, this is a special glass shield made from alkali-aluminosilicate that offers extraordinary damage resistance to your Smartphone display. As you all know, your Smartphone is always at a high risk of getting scratches and cracks caused by drops and bumps. With such a protective glass shield at the disposal, common screen damages will largely be reduced making your mobile phone display more durable and reliable. Though introduced by Apple, this technology has now been adopted by most Smartphone manufacturers such as Motorola, Nokia, and Samsung.

Wrap up

Now that we’ve discussed about 10 of the best smartphone displays used by mobile phones today, the ball is now on your hands when it comes to selecting your favorite display. Before we move on, we would like to mention that the Gorilla Glass is not a display but rather it’s a protective glass that shields your phone’s display from possible damage.

Whether you select the AMOLED, the OLED, the IPS or the TFT display, it’s always wise to understand your main intention. For instance, are you an indoor or an outdoor type of person? Are you a photo or a gaming enthusiast? With such questions in mind, I believe you’ll be able to make an informed decision on what will work best for you.