Laptop screen formats: why I prefer wide (16: 9 or 16:10) to 3: 2.
It is likely that many users do not pay too much attention to the screen format when choosing your next laptop, but that’s something that at least in my case is of paramount importance.
In fact, I am an absolute fan of panoramic format (with a 16: 9 or 16:10 aspect ratio) and although I know that for many users the format with the aspect ratio 3: 2 it is better, there is a clear argument for choosing one or the other: the way you work.
The evolution of formats
Until 2003, most computer monitors, both for desktops and laptops, makes use of 4: 3 aspect ratio which were also used in televisions.
It is from there that the manufacturers started to launch laptops in 16:10 format. This option made it possible to convert these computers into perfect machines for enjoying multimedia content in this format (cinema, of course), and PC monitors were infected.
In the second half of the 2000s, the 16:10 aspect ratio became the most popular, and virtually every laptop on the market used it.
This reign was short-lived, as from 2008 the industry introduced a slight variation: 16: 9 aspect ratio screens began to gain traction and also did so because their output was more efficient. The market was inundated with these kinds of screens and televisions, and by the end of 2012 its success was evident: only 23% of screens were 16:10; the rest was 16: 9.
Apple has indeed been the big proponent of the 16:10 format for years, but few have followed this trend, and in fact a TrendForce study has revealed how. less than 2% of Windows laptops would use this aspect ratio in 2019.
The triumph of 16: 9 format screens seemed complete, but something unique happened: the screens have become (a little) more square. Some tablets have started to use Format 3: 2 more and more frequently, and this format has also become the norm in some laptops such as the Surface Pro.
Today the two formats compete in our laptops, and when choosing one or the other it is necessary to understand how each user uses their laptop.
Maximized applications or two (or more) split windows
Manufacturers who have supported the 3: 2 aspect ratio format – like Microsoft – have argued that it was a perfect hybrid that took the best of both worlds, 4: 3 and 16: 9. Movies are viewed without large black bands (although they are certainly there) and run in a maximized application.
Source: Windows Central.
In Windows Central, they made a good case for this 3: 2 aspect ratio by explaining how the resolution we end up having on a 3: 2 screen promotes productivity, but it does in one clear case: when you only want to have one window on the screen.
It’s in this scenario where, of course, a team that uses a screen with this aspect ratio wins integers: the amount of information that can be displayed for example in a web browser is greater, and if you work that way, with an application in front of you, that’s your format.
This is not my way of using the laptop (or the PC). There are probably not a lot of people with the way I use a PC, but for me it’s usually essential have two browser windows each occupying half the screen.
It allows me to write or take notes on one half of the screen and do my research or research on the subject I’m working on in the other. I end up applying this user experience to other scenarios, and actually for me it was a small blessing that Microsoft introduced the mechanism years ago to dock windows to half the screen (or quarter if we drag them to a corner).
There is certainly utilities that allow you to divide space even more powerfully, and some of you surely argue that this way of working doesn’t help so much when we no longer have the task switcher (Alt + Tab), but when Microsoft offered users support years ago for them. large virtual offices.
Although I use both options as an auxiliary, always keep these windows in mind on screens it makes me much more comfortable to change the context, of the “way of working”. It’s, in essence, like working in a multi-monitor environment, but without needing two monitors.
We can already often see laptops and tablets with 3: 2 aspect ratio displays, but this option is not used on PC monitors.
One reason why we must have fans of the 16: 9 aspect ratio when its rival is seen every time on laptops and tablets, but not on PC monitors. Working precisely on a desktop computer invites you to have a bigger screen where you can see more things at the same time, and this is where a panoramic format helps to better distribute those spaces. Let’s not say ultra-panoramic, of course.
For my work in Engadget I had the opportunity to test all kinds of equipment, but whenever I face a model with a 3: 2 screen the same thing happens: splitting the screen is rare . It always gives me the feeling that the application windows are “flattened”probably because I’m used to my Dell XPS 13 with a 16: 9 screen.
It is true that the problem is usually alleviated by customizing the working resolution (making everything smaller), but this is not an optimal option for me and I always end up reaffirming myself in my preference for a widescreen laptop. For me – and this is what matters after all – this is the one that best suits the way I use this equipment.
Fortunately, there are options to suit all tastes when shopping for a laptop, and while some brands and models are inevitably associated with one aspect ratio or another, the alternatives are there. Of course: be very careful when choosing. Whether the screen has one aspect or another has more crumbs than it looks.
Source : Engadget