Confirmed: iPad 3 Has a 2048x1536 Retina Display

Over the past couple of months, several photos of displays claimed to be for the iPad 3 have surfaced from various sources. Such parts leaks are typical with the device's expected debut early next month. While reports have claimed that these displays are high-resolution "Retina" displays, there has been no definite confirmation of these claims so far.

ipad 3 display mr ruler
MacRumors has now been able to obtain one of these iPad 3 displays and examine it under a microscope in an effort to determine whether it is indeed an ultra-high resolution Retina display. Physically, the purported iPad 3 display is the same size as the current iPad 1 and iPad 2 display at 9.7" in diagonal, and looks quite similar to the naked eye.

However, when comparing the iPad 3 display to one from an iPad 2 under a microscope, the difference in resolutions becomes readily apparent, with the iPad 3 display's pixels appearing to be one-quarter the size of those on the iPad 2.

ipad 2 ipad 3 pixels
Since we only had a raw iPad 3 display with no method to power it, taking high quality photos of the pixels was difficult. Still, even with the relatively poor lighting, you can easily make out the pixels on each display (made up of red, green and blue elements). We highlighted a cluster of 4 pixels (2x2) from the iPad 2 to compare it to the same area on the iPad 3. On the iPad 3, the same cluster was occupied by 16 pixels (4x4) -- exactly twice the resolution in each direction.

Extrapolating out, the iPad 3 screen should carry a full resolution of 2048x1536, exactly twice the linear resolution of the iPad 1 and iPad 2 which is 1024x768. Such a screen should be able to display much sharper images as compared to the previous generation iPads.

While these iPad 3 screens weren't directly sourced from Apple, they are labeled as OEM replacement parts for the iPad 3 and are apparently in mass production. The difficulties of any 3rd party in mass producing 2048x1536 9.7" Retina displays make us quite confident that these represent legitimate iPad 3 parts.

Apple is expected to introduce the iPad 3 with a media event on March 7, and the device is rumored to be carrying this high-resolution display, a new A6 system-on-a-chip, and LTE support for models with cellular data capabilities.

Related Roundup: iPad
Buyer's Guide: iPad (Neutral)
Related Forum: iPad

Top Rated Comments

Consultant Avatar
137 months ago
Does that mean all computer displays will look like a POS after you use the retina display iPad 3?
Score: 69 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Schtumple Avatar
137 months ago
Score: 57 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Spectrum Abuser Avatar
137 months ago
Will be buying as many as possible during pre-orders/launch. Keep one, sell the rest on eBay for double!
People like you ruin it for others who just want to get one for themselves.
Score: 52 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MBHockey Avatar
137 months ago
Pretty impressive detective work, guys ;)
Score: 52 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Peace Avatar
137 months ago
Seriously MR ? wow.

Don't go turning into another Gizmodo please.


/start down votes
Score: 51 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Broojo02 Avatar
137 months ago
Awesome, if this is true I am definitely getting an iPad 3!
Score: 44 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Pro Purple Rear Flat MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro Predicted to Start With Increased 256GB Storage Alongside Rumored Price Increase

Wednesday August 10, 2022 11:14 am PDT by
Earlier today, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed iPhone 14 Pro models will be more expensive than iPhone 13 Pro models. Kuo did not reveal exact pricing, but he said that the average selling price of all four iPhone 14 models will increase by about 15% overall. While higher prices would be disappointing for customers, it is possible the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max will offer increased...
iOS 16 battery percentage

Apple Limiting iOS 16 Beta 5 Battery Percentage Display to Select iPhones: Here Are the Supported Devices

Tuesday August 9, 2022 2:51 am PDT by
Apple this week brought back one of the most highly requested features from iOS users since the launch of the iPhone X in 2017: the ability to see your battery percentage directly in the status bar. Ever since the launch of the iPhone X with the notch, Apple has not allowed users to show their battery percentage directly in the status bar, forcing them to swipe down into Control Center to...
iPhone 14 Pro Lineup Feature Silver

Kuo: Apple to Increase Prices of iPhone 14 Pro Models

Wednesday August 10, 2022 8:22 am PDT by
Apple plans to increase the prices of iPhone 14 Pro models compared to iPhone 13 Pro models, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Kuo did not reveal exact pricing for the iPhone 14 Pro models. However, in a tweet today, he estimated that the average selling price of the iPhone 14 lineup as a whole will increase by about 15% compared to the iPhone 13 lineup. In the United States, the iPhone...
ios 16 beta 5 battery percent

iOS 16 Beta 5: Battery Percentage Now Displayed in iPhone Status Bar

Monday August 8, 2022 10:43 am PDT by
With the fifth beta of iOS 16, Apple has updated the battery icon on iPhones with Face ID to display the specific battery percentage rather than just a visual representation of battery level. The new battery indicator is available on iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 models, with the exception of the 5.4-inch iPhone 12/13 mini. It is also available on the iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max, XS and XS Max, and...
battery percentage ios 16

Here's Why the iPhone Battery Status Icon in iOS 16 Is So Controversial

Wednesday August 10, 2022 4:34 am PDT by
In the latest iOS 16 beta, Apple has updated the status bar battery icon on iPhones with Face ID to display the exact percentage remaining rather than just a visual representation of battery level, and while the change has been largely welcomed, some users are unhappy with the way it has been implemented. In iOS 15 and earlier, battery percent has not been present on iPhones that have...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive feature

iPhone 14 Is Just a Few Weeks Away: Three Tips to Prepare for the New iPhone

Wednesday August 10, 2022 4:08 am PDT by
The launch of the new iPhone 14 is just a few weeks away, meaning millions of iPhone customers will soon upgrade their existing iPhone or perhaps get an iPhone for the first time. Exclusive MacRumors iPhone 14 Pro renders by graphic designer Ian Zelbo Whether upgrading from an older model or this is your first iPhone, we've rounded up a few tips to help you prepare for the next flagship...
iPhone 14 Lineup Feature Purple

Color Options for All iPhone 14 Models: Everything We Know

Monday August 8, 2022 3:59 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models are rumored to be available in a refreshed range of color options, including an all-new purple color. Most expectations about the iPhone 14 lineup's color options come from an unverified post on Chinese social media site Weibo earlier this year. Overall, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro's selection of color options could look fairly similar to those of the ...