updated 08:16 am EDT, Fri May 3, 2013
Microsoft prepping high-res 7.5-inch Surface says NPD DisplaySearch
An analyst with NPD DisplaySearch has told CNET that Microsoft has settled on a 7.5-inch display for one of its second-generation Surface tablets, which would go on sale in Q1 2014. The display could have a resolution of 1,400x1050 pixels that would give it a pixel density of 233 pixels per inch. This would make it one of the highest resolution small display tablets available and would comfortably beat out the current iPad mini, which sports a 7.9-inch display with a pixel density of 132ppi.
"From the supply chain side, we're seeing the panel specifications, the touch module, the mass production schedule being made," said NPD DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim. "Mass production is Q1 [first quarter] 2014. Apparently, pretty significant volume. Multiple millions," Shim insisted.
A display size of 7.5-inches for the new Surface tablet gels with a rumor this week out of the Taiwanese supply chain that indicated Microsoft was preparing next-generation Surface tablets, but the display sizes would be limited to between 7- and 9-inches. Microsoft, it seems, could be abandoning the current Surface display size, which has a 16:9 screen ratio and is 10.6-inches across.
Further, the tablet market is now split evenly between sales of larger 9- and 10-inch tablets, and sub-8-inch tablets. This helps to offer some explanation for Microsoft's relatively lackluster Surface tablet sales. In lacking a sub-8-inch device means that it has only been able to address half the potential tablet market. The smaller iPad mini and the Android-based Google Nexus 7 have proven extremely popular with customers looking for enhanced portability.