[QUOTE=Coconut;2661520]Windows 8 is officially out, and PC manufacturers are officially advertising their W8 products. I again looked up Lenovo, Dell, HP, which are the three traditional PC laptop manufacturers with top-resolution screens prior to the Retina on Macs, and they have announced their new laptops with Windows 8. Not one of them has announced anything close to Retina.
Samsung makes the Retina screens for Apple (LG is said also to do the same, but LG is not a manufacturer of PC laptops), so should be able to make PC laptops with Retina displays, and a few months ago showed tablets with Retina displays, but never brought them to production. Now Samsung has the ATIV Smart PC Pro 700T at almost two thousand bucks, and it has an 11.6" screen with 1920 x 1080 resolution, which is (still) the highest resolution offered on any PC laptop or tablet – HP, Lenovo and Dell have it on their 15.4 screens (my Lenovo W500 has such a screen). Samsung now has the same resolution on an 11.6" screen, which is still nowhere near Retina resolution, but it is the highest resolution on any PC laptop or tablet. The machine has W8.
Totally unbelieveable!!! Does Apple patent the Retina display?[/QUOTE]
I think there are several reasons. Some people will answer your question by saying that Apple is innovative and the others are not. Some others will say Retina is patented by Apple, and it’s true.
Whether you believe Apple is far more innovative than Lenovo, LG, Samsung, HP, Dell, Toshiba, Sony, and hundreds of others is your choice. Whether the fact Apple has patent rights concerning Retina - the technology or the brand name or whatever is also your choice and clearly different people have different opinions on that.
What is plain and cannot be disagreed upon is that there are limits to producing Retina-quality panels. Another is that it costs far more for Sharp, Samsung, and LG to produce such panels. The cost difference is small compared to the price differences offered to end user consumers, but even such differences mean a lot to shareholders and it’s they that decide the fate of building plants and increasing investment.
Since Apple has been asking all the display manfufacturers to produce such high-resolution screens, they had to allot certain amount of investment on their R&D and plants, but yield rate has been unsatisfactory. It was not very profitable for LG to produce 30-inch panels capable of 2560 x 1600 resolution. It was profitable, but the market preferred smaller screens with smaller resolution and “Full HD” and “Wide” (or 16:9 ratio) was most fashionable.
Another factor is less obvious. Apple is owned and cared for by people who read books. Samsung is not. LG is not. Somehow Apple’s owners and its consumers prefer higher-resolution screens so that more pixels can be displayed on single screen, and on single device. None of the South Korean managers, shareholders, investors, engineers I’ve seen care about such things. Steve Jobs liked to say Apple makes products that its employers, especially the engineers and designers themselves wanted to use. Japanese electronics makers liked to make things like Walkman. Laptops and smaller-factor computer devices were far better sold in Japan than in the US. Ebooks are far better sold and read in the US than in South Korea. An average South Korean uses many times more Internet bandwidth than an average North American, but it’s the opposite for ebooks. There are a lot of posts on Apple-related web forums focusing on Retina, but such discussions are far rarer on other places and practically none on South Korean forums. Steve Jobs loved to tell people how great Retina is and cheated enough people to make the world believe only Apple can do it and it’s wholly owned by Apple. Chairman Lee Gun Hee of Samsung and Chairman Goo (or Koo) of LG are far older. They have poorer eyesights and far less interest on ebooks. Dell and HP? They are bureaucrats and dumb engineers and will not do anything until they have to sell their companies at the lowest prices to Apple, or Google, or maybe even Samsung.
Why should Apple monopolize or nearly monopolize the relatively small quantity of Retina-quality panels for higher-resolution computer display? Maybe Steve Jobs forced the three important panel makers to provide the best panels only to Apple. Maybe they thought it was in their best interest to sell to Apple only instead of using the outputs in their own products. Maybe only Apple decided such high resolutions made sense and they could make the market realize the advantages. Sony was selling high-resolution subnotebooks, but the prices were high and features other than the high resolutions were mostly poor. Sony itself is experiencing the worst crisis losing billions of dollars each quarter and firing thousands of employees and gave up display panel production nearly completely years ago.