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AMOLED vs OLED: Which one is better?

Display technology has come a long way from the pesky backlit pixelated displays we used to see on older phones and computers. Now we have high-resolution, touch-capable displays that’ll leave you scratching your head in awe.

In this article, we’re comparing OLED displays to AMOLED ones to help you figure out which ones work best.

Also read: MP3 vs MP4: Key differences


The technology behind

OLED and AMOLED might sound similar, but the tech behind them is different. OLED displays were the first to hit the market and use thin layers of organic components (mostly glass or plastic substrates) that emit light as a current is applied to them. The result is each pixel emitting its own light.

AMOLED vs OLED: Which one is better? | Candid.Technology

On the other hand, AMOLED displays use an additional layer of thin-film transistors, otherwise known as TFTs, which uses storage capacitors to maintain pixel state.

This means that OLED displays are easier and cheaper to manufacture, but AMOLED displays retain colour better. 


The display itself

OLED displays give deeper blacks than AMOLEDs and are more readable under sunlight, but that’s about it when it comes to their advantages. On the other hand, AMOLED displays provide a much better quality display thanks to the additional layer of TFTs and the use of backplane tech.

Another thing worth pointing out is that AMOLEDs are more flexible than OLEDs due to their structure. This means that on foldable devices, you’re pretty much only getting AMOLED displays. 

AMOLED vs OLED: Which one is better? | Candid.Technology
AMOLED Displays fit the bill for foldable smartphones such as the Galaxy Z Flip 3. | Source: Samsung

Lastly, OLEDs might give you a better contrast ratio but fail at giving as high refresh rates as an AMOLED does. Also, while OLEDs allow for bigger display sizes compared to LCDs, AMOLED displays remove this limitation altogether. 

Also read: Freesync vs G sync: Which one comes out on top?


Power consumption

OLEDs consume much less power than AMOLEDs once again, owing to their construction. They’re simpler in nature, and the additional TFT layer in AMOLEDs eats more power than a simple OLED.

This means that you’re going to have better battery life with an OLED screen than an AMOLED. Also, since most AMOLED displays will be a higher refresh rate and larger than their OLED counterparts, you can factor that into the battery consumption, which brings down battery life even more. 


AMOLEDs vs OLEDs

Here’s a quick recap of the differences between the two displays.

OLEDAMOLED
Supports larger displays.No limitation on display size.
Refresh rates can be limited.Supports high-refresh rates without problems.
Easy on the battery.Uses more power as compared to OLED displays.
Not as flexible.Much more flexible than OLED screens.
Easier to manufacture and hence, cheaper.More expensive than OLED screens.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, AMOLED is essentially a type of OLED display made to perform better under certain circumstances. So the one you pick is pretty much limited by what smartphone or device you want in the first place.

It’s not going to make much of a difference anyway unless your knit-picking, and on a daily driver, you’ll be just fine with either. We suggest focussing more on what you actually want to do from the device you’re picking up rather than knit-pick on the display tech, as they’re both pretty decent performers in real-life situations.

Also read: Galaxy Z Fold 3 vs Fold 2: Key Differences

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