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Apple May Be Considering Matte Screens Again

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 32 comments

Glassy screens be gone... please?

Regardless of what you may think of Apple computers, their designs do hold a certain attractive quality. We were mightily impressed last October with the new unibody construction but we've always been very against the all-glass display.

While the glossy glass display looks stunning in the show room, especially when the machine is off, the added frustration of dealing with extreme glare makes it something that most road warriors will end up hating.

Apple partially solved the problem by offering the 17-inch MacBook Pro with an option for a matte screen – at the cost of $50 for something that used to be no-cost.

The thing is that those who have 17-inch MacBook Pros might be less likely to carry their machines to environments with uncontrollable lighting as compared to those with 13- or 15-inch MacBook Pros.

AppleInsider claims to have heard from sources close to Apple that the matte screen option will soon return, perhaps as early as sometime this year coinciding with a hardware refresh. This could help put a little bit of the professional in the "Pro" line of MacBooks.

Although things may return all to the way they should be in Appleland, the influence that the Cupertino computer maker has on the rest of the PC industry could mean that certain PC-based laptops will continue to make use of ultra-glossy displays simply because they look nice.

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Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    hillarymakesmecry , July 15, 2009 7:18 PM
    Great news. I hate glossy screens.
  • 12 Hide
    tenor77 , July 15, 2009 7:49 PM
    lexspecialisPlease get rid of those glossy screen.. If i want to look at myself, i'd go take a look in a mirror, not a monitor..


    But what about those of us in love with ourselves? I can watch porn and see myself at the same time!
Other Comments
  • 12 Hide
    hillarymakesmecry , July 15, 2009 7:18 PM
    Great news. I hate glossy screens.
  • 7 Hide
    08nwsula , July 15, 2009 7:18 PM
    it would be nice if they just gave the consumer the option of glossy or matte for no additional charge. I still wouldn't buy one but it would be nice of them.
  • 9 Hide
    mlcloud , July 15, 2009 7:19 PM
    Apple MAY be considering. That's like the world MAY implode in the next few hours, and that that sort of thing MAY be relevant to the user interest...

    But yay, glare reduction. The boost in hardware (much needed) was interesting. Attempting to add another glamorous option to these MacBooks may not be so interesting.
  • 4 Hide
    lexspecialis , July 15, 2009 7:28 PM
    Please get rid of those glossy screen.. If i want to look at myself, i'd go take a look in a mirror, not a monitor..
  • 6 Hide
    frozenlead , July 15, 2009 7:36 PM
    Am I the only one who likes glossy screens? They just seem to make things a bit sharper. To me, anyway.
  • -4 Hide
    Honis , July 15, 2009 7:47 PM
    Stylish? An all white case that shows every piece of crap that a laptop can be put through?

    They will release a new matte, they will charge for it, you will buy it because it will Innovative! somewhere in the description.

    I will hand it to Apple, I do like the glass screens for there durability.
  • 12 Hide
    tenor77 , July 15, 2009 7:49 PM
    lexspecialisPlease get rid of those glossy screen.. If i want to look at myself, i'd go take a look in a mirror, not a monitor..


    But what about those of us in love with ourselves? I can watch porn and see myself at the same time!
  • 1 Hide
    dzeric , July 15, 2009 7:54 PM
    you could always use a fine grit sandpaper to reach the desired effect.
  • 3 Hide
    anamaniac , July 15, 2009 8:07 PM
    dzericyou could always use a fine grit sandpaper to reach the desired effect.


    I like you now.

    tenor77But what about those of us in love with ourselves? I can watch porn and see myself at the same time!


    Yeah!
  • 0 Hide
    jacobdrj , July 15, 2009 8:36 PM
    I understand that Apple is 'anti-choice'. It is their business plan. It lets them do things others can't.

    But what harm would there be in making this a customizeable feature? It is just swapping 1 LCD for another, and they already have the statistical information to determine which to order more of by now...
  • 0 Hide
    neapolis , July 15, 2009 8:38 PM
    Just give an option. That's all. Or make glossy screens the right way like my (4 year old!) Sony VAIO VGN-317.
  • 0 Hide
    nukemaster , July 15, 2009 9:01 PM
    frozenleadAm I the only one who likes glossy screens? They just seem to make things a bit sharper. To me, anyway.

    I have an old Compaq R3000 with a glossy screen. I honestly prefer it to matte. I got a glossy Sony screen for my desktop...ohhhh the bad color, My Samsung 245T is matte and still looks good, but i still have no issues with glossy in the right environment.

    Apple, give users the CHOICE for FREE!!!
  • 0 Hide
    mavroxur , July 15, 2009 9:29 PM
    lexspecialisPlease get rid of those glossy screen.. If i want to look at myself, i'd go take a look in a mirror, not a monitor..



    And for a small fee, you can purchase iMirror, the latest software for macbooks. It turns off your screen and enables the "MLRS" (mirror like refletion system) that was built into your macbook from the factory. The app will only cost $69 at your nearest Apple store.


  • 1 Hide
    cracklint , July 15, 2009 9:31 PM
    For gaming I like the gloss look, the colors and blacks are much deeper. But for text and work enviornments I think the matte is the way to go.
  • 1 Hide
    belardo , July 15, 2009 10:24 PM
    I would like to find the guy who decided years ago that GLOSSY LCD displays on notebooks is a GREAT IDEA... and kick him in the nuts.

    Only a moron would have thought "This is good". In almost any environment - the glossy screen is reflecting everything. Your face, anything behind you, any movement. Sure this is good if you have people who like to sneak up behind you.

    When I was shopping to a notebook last year to buy from a store. I was looking at the IdeaPad at $650 (C2D/2GB/gf8600m/Vista) and a ThinkPad R61 (PDC/1GB/intel-video/XP) for $500. The ability to play games was a selling point on the IdeaPad, faster CPU & bigger HD. But I'd also have to spend $100 to replace Vista with XP. But then I noticed the severe lack of reflection on the Thinkpad.

    With its brighter matte screen, I was done instantly! I wasn't looking for a NON-glossy screen notebook because I thought nobody made them anymore. HP, Sony, IdeaPad, Gateway, etc... glossy. And besides, the other features of ThinkPad makes it a better notebook, besides saving $250 in price.

    Next time anyone wants a new notebook with a good screen, keyboard & XP options, you can order a ThinkPad and it ships in about 7~10 days (I've bought some for clients). But some models include the Glossy option ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    waffle911 , July 15, 2009 10:54 PM
    All this hate for glossy displays (and I share it too, a bit) makes me wonder what it was that we did before we had LCD screens. We had glass-faced CRT monitors... with an anti-glare overlay filter thingy placed over the screen. Why can't we have something like that? Or another thing is, given how much people hate glossy screens, why haven't we been exposed to some sort of plastic screen-protector-sheet-thing that just goes on like... well... a screen protector? Third parties make anti-glare matte screen protectors for the iPhone, so why not the MacBooks or any other laptop screen? You'd think it would be a profitable product for accessories makers to work on. It would cost 10 cents to make (plus initial development/equipment costs, packaging and distribution) and they'd charge $15-25. I don't see how that couldn't make money.
  • 0 Hide
    pocketdrummer , July 16, 2009 1:55 AM
    Is it possible to have matte glass? That would be a nice happy medium. I like apple's glossy screens because they're more recyclable, but unless you live in a cave (in which case a desktop would have been better), then matte is the way to go.
  • 0 Hide
    rquick , July 16, 2009 2:25 AM
    I love my aluminum Macbook with the glossy screen. I've travelled with it plenty and seldom had a problem. I'm a windows user, but this mac is a great piece of equipment. If you need a laptop and the price doesn't matter, don't let the glossy screen stop you. I don't think it matters.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 16, 2009 3:13 AM
    ^we didn't have CRT on notebooks...
  • 0 Hide
    belardo , July 16, 2009 4:58 AM
    Early CRTs didn't have gloss. But having lights and any kind of background stuff moving on the screen sucked, so they developed various anti-glare materials that were applied to the glass on the CRT. These coating were subject to damage.

    Of course, LCDs (without a glass cover) are easily damaged too... but thats the actual monitor thats getting damaged.

    Waffle: About 3-4 years ago, some idiot in marketing decided that a glossy screen would look better. Now, to a degree - the glossy screen is a tad darker, making the desktop look more "colorful" which is fine for watching videos. But doing work?

    I've just compared a 15" glossy notebook in a darkish dining room to my ThinkPad with matte screen in a bright room with 2 light sources. I can still see the reflection of my face on the glossy screen. The ThinkPad's display is bright & crisp and with no reflections. No detractions. No moving backgrounds when I move.

    Cool to have a choice on screens... but for most people, they don't have a choice because the selection at the stores and don't know they can order a better product over the internet.

    Unfortunately, most netbooks appear to be glossy screens. :( 
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