Archive for January 3, 2022

Monday, January 3, 2022

External Retina Display Rumors for 2022

Parker Ortolani:

Rumors have started to pick up about a new more affordable Apple display that could come this year. Just this morning, Mark Gurman at Bloomberg reported that the company is indeed planning to release a display in 2022 that’s half the price of the Pro Display XDR. But the Pro Display XDR is $6,000-$7,000 leaving this rumored display to be around $3,500 still. This product isn’t what most of us are looking for. It’s not even out yet and most customers in the market for an Apple display have been priced out.

Tim Hardwick:

In related rumors, Twitter-based leaker @dylandkt last month claimed LG is developing three new standalone displays that may end up being for Apple, including one based on the current 24-inch iMac, one based on the upcoming 27-inch iMac, and a 32-inch model that may be a new Pro Display XDR with an Apple silicon chip.

I would rather see something based on the 2021 27-inch iMac display. The new iMac will probably be mini-LED. For many uses, that’s not worth the expense, and in some viewing conditions it actually looks worse due to blooming.

Adam Chandler:

I knew this was an issue going into both my iPad Pro and MacBook Pro purchases but in that same MacRumors article, it was mentioned that the blooming has been mostly fixed in these MacBook Pros. I can say it has not. More technically speaking, “16-inch offers 10,216 miniLEDs across 2,554 local dimming zones.” and the iPad Pro 13″ has, “10,000 mini LED grouped into four so 2,500 local dimming zones.” so the two are very close so I can’t see how anyone would think the issue would just go away.

Everyone knows Mini LED has this issue. Products from all companies have blooming complaints online but I think my issue here is that Apple went all-in on this technology from the $1300 iPad Pro up to the $4900 Pro Display XDR. MiniLED is something Apple is heavily invested in despite these short comings. How I fix it is to turn off ‘true black on apps like Reeder or various writing apps like ByWord. With true-black turned off, the issue is better. I can also turn on a light in my room and turn down the display which helps.


Update (2022-01-05): Benjamin Mayo:

However, all display technologies have tradeoffs, and the mini-LED design seen in the MacBook Pro is no different. Blooming is often discussed as a downside of mini-LED but funnily enough, I don’t see it crop up too much in how I use my computer. It’s there if you seek it out, but you really have to hunt.

As shown in the video above, a persistent niggle for me is the vignetting effect around the edges of the display. The extreme edge of the screen is just slightly darker all the way around, and it sticks out when the rest of the screen is uniformly bright.


OLEDs don’t exhibit the edge vignetting and have no blooming because each pixel is individually lit, but they bring their own issues like burn-in and jelly scrolling to contend with.

Almost Always Unsigned

Dale Weiler (via Richard Geldreich):

There are a lot of arguments against the use of unsigned integers. Let me explain why I think they’re mostly incorrect.


Trap representations are actually quite insufficient as they can only trigger at runtime when those paths are successfully executed with the correct trap-producing inputs. This coverage is impossible to expect in any non-trivial program even with exhaustive unit testing. The idea is also incompatible in many contexts such as library code where you almost never want the library to panic, but rather all errors be recoverable by the calling application code, or in service-availability sensitive code which must not be susceptible to denial of service attacks, where a panic is pretty much not acceptable.


The reality is that the use of signed and unsigned paints all your integers red or blue, respectively. What color is Your Function. The more of one you use, the more likely it is everything will also share the same signedness regardless of if it’s appropriate. Since most integers never require representing negative values, I personally think it’s more appropriate to paint everything blue in this case.


In many ways signed integers are the null pointers of integers.


Hyper Thunderbolt 4 Hub

Joe Rossignol:

Hyper also announced what it claims is the world’s first Thunderbolt 4 hub with an integrated 100-watt GaN power supply. The hub features one Thunderbolt 4 upstream port for connecting to and charging Thunderbolt-equipped computers like Macs, while three Thunderbolt 4 downstream ports provide up to 40 Gbps of total bandwidth and support for connecting dual 4K displays at 60Hz or a single 8K display at 30Hz.


Squeezing the Most Out of Bluetooth

Tom Parsons (Hacker News):

As I discovered during a recent conversation with Geaves and Eric Treski from the Product Marketing Team, much of the work in designing the new AirPods 3 revolved around trying to solve problems inherent in the brief to come up with a true-wireless in-ear headphone that crams into its tiny form next-gen technology such as Spatial Audio and ups the sound quality ante without resorting to a burrowing or noise-isolating design.


The so-called ‘Transparency’ modes of the AirPods Pro and AirPods Max are very impressive (as are many similar features offered by rival noise-cancelling headphones) but they can never sound as natural as a true open design. What’s more, an in-ear headphone that sits outside the ear canal is always going to be more comfortable than one that’s wedged into it. Personally speaking, I’m therefore glad that Apple has stuck with the non-burrowing design for the AirPods 3, even though doing so presented lots of challenges for Geaves and his team.


“Obviously the wireless technology is critical for the content delivery that you talk about”, he says, “but also things like the amount of latency you get when you move your head, and if that’s too long, between you moving your head and the sound changing or remaining static, it will make you feel quite ill, so we have to concentrate very hard on squeezing the most that we can out of the Bluetooth technology, and there’s a number of tricks we can play to maximise or get around some of the limits of Bluetooth. But it’s fair to say that we would like more bandwidth and… I’ll stop right there. We would like more bandwidth”, he smiles.

Nick Heer:

Given that AirPods Max and Apple Music’s lossless audio option were announced within six months of each other, yet were incompatible for bandwidth reasons, it seemed like something had to give. It felt like a plot hole in both products’ respective stories.

José Adorno:

If analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is right, Apple is probably adopting a new standard to offer Lossless support with AirPods Pro 2.