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Japan Display’s new virtual reality screens greatly improve pixel density

The future for virtual reality is continuing to look bright, as more behind-the-scenes development has resulted in new high pixel density displays. Japan Display has announced two new VR-specific displays, one sitting at over 1000 pixels per inch, and another with 800 pixels per inch.

For those who don’t know, Japan Display is a joint factory owned by Sony, Toshiba and Hitachi. The two new displays are designed specifically for VR use, with the 1000PPI screen capable of operating at 120Hz, and the 800PPI screen capable of hitting 90Hz, both of which are perfect for virtual reality gaming. In terms of actual resolution, the higher-end screen runs at 2160×2432, while the other runs at 1920×2160, which is quite close to the current Oculus Rift, but in a more compact screen.

Image credit: Japan Display/JDI

Currently, the PSVR, HTC VIVE and Oculus Rift operate with 400PPI displays. These are passable, but pixels are all still clearly visible. The HTC VIVE Pro and Samsung Odyssey VR headsets improve on this a bit with 650PPI displays, but it looks like a more significant jump could be heading our way in the next couple of years.

While OLED has been used for many VR displays up to this point, Japan Display’s new offerings are based on IPS panels instead. There is another key difference between these newer displays and those currently on the market- size. While the Rift, PSVR and VIVE use 5.7-inch screens at the moment, these displays are designed for smaller, lighter headsets, with the 1000PPI screen measuring in at 3.25-inches diagonally, and the 800PPI screen coming in at 3.60-inches. With that in mind, any company planning on using these displays will also need to invest in some new magnification lenses for the headset.

KitGuru Says: Commercial shipments of these displays will start going out in March next year, so it will be a while before we see new headsets equipped with them. Still, it is an exciting look at the future of VR, which will bring clearer visuals and finally do away with the screen door effect. 

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