AMOLED VS LCD Phone Display Panels: Pros and Cons

different types of smartphone display

Modern smartphones have gotten really good. Many argue that these phones are all the same; rectangular slabs with glass in front and back, big beautiful phone display, and huge batteries that can last a full day and so on.

While this is true for the most part, there is still a lot that can differentiate a device from the next. Today, let us look at some of the display techs we have in the market today.

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We shall cover AMOLED vs LCD panels on smartphones by going through their pros and cons and hopefully leave you better informed as you shop around for your next smartphone.


Read More: IPS LCD, OLED, AMOLED, Super AMOLED, TFT: Smartphone display technologies explained


AMOLED Pros

  • It consumes much less power compared to LCD, which means more battery time for you to do other stuff.
  • Lower sunlight reflection means relatively comfortable to use outdoors without having to max out your brightness.
  • Impressive viewing angles, everyone seated 2 rows behind you in the church will enjoy that YouTube video with you.
AMOLED vs LCD
Samsung devices often use AMOLED displays
  • A higher contrast ratio compared to LCD, the contrast ratio is basically the difference between the brightest and darkest a display can show. This makes a big difference in the overall picture quality.
  • Deeper blacks as a result of the display being able to turn off individual pixels off completely.
  • Colors on an AMOLED display are over-saturated which makes them pop out more

AMOLED Cons

  • Expensive to repair compared to LCDs, you will have to dig deeper into your pockets if you break your AMOLED display.
  • Screen burn-in: this is an inherent fault that occurs when you use your AMOLED display at max brightness for long. This will leave imprints of static images that are overused.
  • AMOLED displays degrade faster causing then to have a shorter life span because of the organic materials found in them.
  • Organic materials in AMOLED panels make them vulnerable to water damage as opposed to the LCD’s inorganic crystallines.

LCD Pros

  • LCD displays are less susceptible to screen burn-ins which is more rampant on AMOLED phone display.
  • Higher brightness levels than AMOLED means you will most likely never struggle to use your phone outdoors even if you live on Mercury.
  • Cheaper to repair/replace compared to AMOLED
  • Much cleaner whites compared to SUPER AMOLED
  • LCDs have a more realistic color reproduction compared to AMOLED displays
AMOLED vs LCD
LG smartphones usually use LCD panels

LCD Cons

  • LCD displays drain the battery much faster than AMOLED displays. This is because the LCD backlight is always on behind all pixels while AMOLED displays only light up pixels that need to be lit
  • Backlight bleed occurs at the sides of LCD panels. This causes non-uniformity of colors making the edges brighter than the central sections of the display
  • LCD displays cannot be as thin as AMOLED displays owing to the fact that LCD panels must have a backlight behind them, which AMOLEDs do not have.

AMOLED vs LCD

While this may not be a dealbreaker for the average phone buyer, it is worth looking out for (and knowing) the differences between these 2 phone display panels. So, when next you see LCD or AMOLED on the specs sheet of a device, you know how and why they are different.