Apple Watch Display Quality Judged 'Excellent', Calibrated to Match iPhone 6

DisplayMate Technologies has extensively tested the Apple Watch's flexible OLED display and shared the results today based on several categories, including screen reflection, brightness and contrast with ambient light, color gamut with ambient light, and viewing angle variations. Overall, the company found the Apple Watch to have an "excellent smart watch display" with accurate colors and picture quality.

Apple Watch DisplayMate Chart
In a side-by-side comparison with the iPhone 6 display, the display calibration company found that Apple has taken measures to ensure that the Apple Watch display has the same colors, color calibration and color accuracy as the larger smartphone screen. The stainless steel and gold Apple Watches with sapphire crystal displays, however, have much higher reflectance in ambient light and mandatory automatic brightness control to preserve battery life.

"Since the Apple Watch is often used right next to the iPhone 6, Apple has gone to considerable lengths to give them the same colors, color calibration, and color accuracy. The two most significant differences (other than size) are the much higher Reflectance of the Apple Watch with a sapphire crystal (8.2 percent compared to 4.6 percent), and the aggressive Brightness control using a mandatory Automatic Brightness Ambient Light Sensor in order to increase the running time on battery for the tiny watch."

DisplayMate Apple Watch Reflections
The full-length report offers a comprehensive look at the Apple Watch's ion-strengthened and sapphire crystal displays, and reiterates that enhanced sapphire, which lowers the screen reflectance of sapphire to be much lower than glass, will soon be available for use in smartphones, smartwatches and other mobile devices. Additionally, DisplayMate's previous tests of the Samsung Gear 2 and Sony SmartWatch 2 displays provide good comparisons to the Apple Watch.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 7
Related Forum: Apple Watch

Top Rated Comments

UnfetteredMind Avatar
84 months ago
It took me about a day and a half but I am now fully 100% an Apple Watch lover. This thing is just fantastic and as I use it more and more and understand its many functions I am just super pleased. Glad I ordered the Sports too, not too much money and works just fine.

It's a bit like the movie, "Her." Last night when I achieved my activity goal, my Watch dinged me and said, "Congratulations!" and I actually looked at my wrist and said, "Oh, thanks Watch." lol:)

Just don't tell anyone you're in love with your wrist :p
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mgmusicman94 Avatar
84 months ago
I'm starting to feel like the Sport model might be outshining the Steel model in more aspects now. The aluminum is harder and more scratch resistant, and now we know the screen looks better under the Ion-X glass than under the sapphire.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ttss6 Avatar
84 months ago
I'm still happy with the Steel model. Sure its more reflective and can scratch more easily, but I spent the extra $200 for the materials themselves. I've just always wanted a nice quality watch without spending into the $1000s
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chumpy34 Avatar
84 months ago
It took me about a day and a half but I am now fully 100% an Apple Watch lover. This thing is just fantastic and as I use it more and more and understand its many functions I am just super pleased. Glad I ordered the Sports too, not too much money and works just fine.

It's a bit like the movie, "Her." Last night when I achieved my activity goal, my Watch dinged me and said, "Congratulations!" and I actually looked at my wrist and said, "Oh, thanks Watch." lol:)
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JustThinkin' Avatar
84 months ago
I care very much about color accuracy.

The Watch is one place I could let it go.



Nevertheless, I appreciate the fact that Displaymate continues to test new devices, and keep awareness of color accuracy high.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RDeckard Avatar
84 months ago
It's going to be really easy to scratch the glass though. AC+ is necessity with the sport IMO.
Actually, the Ion-X glass will be easier to scratch than sapphire, yes -- but I wouldn't say it would be really easy to scratch the glass.

OK, I get that the Ion-X glass will "scratch easily" for those who get their jollies by scratching their watches with sandpaper... But I'm gonna bet most people won't be doing that.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

m1x mac mini screen feature

High-End 'M1X' Mac Mini With New Design and Additional Ports Expected to Launch in the 'Next Several Months'

Sunday August 22, 2021 5:59 am PDT by
Apple can be expected to launch an updated high-end Mac mini with a new design and a faster "M1X" Apple silicon processor in the "next several months," Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reports. In the latest publication of his Power On newsletter, Gurman writes that a new high-end Mac mini, which has previously been reported to feature a new design with additional ports, can be expected to replace...
mac scanner permission error

Apple Says Fix Planned for 'You Do Not Have Permission to Open the Application' Error When Using a Scanner on Mac

Saturday August 14, 2021 6:15 am PDT by
In a newly published support document on its website, Apple has acknowledged an error that some users may receive when they try to use a scanner with a Mac in the Image Capture app, Preview app, or the Printers & Scanners section of System Preferences. A screenshot of the error message from the HP Support Community When attempting to use a scanner with a Mac, Apple said users might get an...
iCloud General Feature

iCloud+'s New Custom Email Domain Feature Now Available in Beta

Wednesday August 25, 2021 7:48 am PDT by
Starting with iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS Monterey, users with a paid iCloud+ storage plan can personalize their iCloud email address with a custom domain name, such as johnny@appleseed.com, and the feature is now available in beta. iCloud+ subscribers interested in setting up a custom email domain can visit the beta.icloud.com website, select "Account Settings" under their name, and select ...
original iphone

Phil Schiller Says iPhone Was 'Earth-Shattering' Ten Years Ago and Remains 'Unmatched' Today

Monday January 9, 2017 7:15 am PST by
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the iPhone, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller sat down with tech journalist Steven Levy for a wide-ranging interview about the smartphone's past, present, and future. The report first reflects upon the iPhone's lack of support for third-party apps in its first year. The argument inside Apple was split between whether the iPhone should be a closed...
macbookpro13large

macOS Big Sur Update Bricking Some Older MacBook Pro Models

Sunday November 15, 2020 5:33 am PST by
A large number of late 2013 and mid 2014 13-inch MacBook Pro owners are reporting that the macOS Big Sur update is bricking their machines. A MacRumors forum thread contains a significant number of users reporting the issue, and similar problems are being reported across Reddit and the Apple Support Communities, suggesting the problem is widespread. Users are reporting that during the...
m1 imac orange

New iMac Tidbits: Headphone Jack on Side, Ethernet Port on Power Adapter, Spatial Audio and WiFi 6 Support, No SD Card Slot

Wednesday April 21, 2021 6:38 am PDT by
Apple yesterday announced a completely redesigned 24-inch iMac with the M1 Apple silicon chip. The new iMac, the first major redesign of the Mac desktop computer since 2012, has several changes compared to the previous generation. In the aftermath of the event, a few new features and tidbits may have slipped under the radar, so we’ve compiled this list of some of the less-talked-about...
General YouTube Feature 1

YouTube Premium and Music Surpass 50 Million Subscribers

Friday September 3, 2021 2:19 am PDT by
YouTube says it has passed 50 million subscribers for its Premium and Music subscriptions, making it the "fastest growing music subscription" service in the world, according to YouTube's global head of music, Lyor Cohen. YouTube says that it has more than 50 million paying subscribers collectively across YouTube Premium and YouTube Music. The Google-owned service says it attributes this...
Top Stories 75 Thumbnail

Top Stories: Last-Minute iPhone 13 Rumors, Apple Announces App Store Changes, and More

Saturday September 4, 2021 6:00 am PDT by
The finish line is in sight! Apple's annual iPhone event is likely just a week or so away and all eyes will be on the company as it unveils the next version of its most popular product line. With any luck, we'll also see the next-generation Apple Watch and perhaps even some new AirPods. Other news this week saw Apple making some more changes to its App Store policies in response to a...
omg lightning cable comparison

Security Researcher Develops Lightning Cable With Hidden Chip to Steal Passwords

Thursday September 2, 2021 6:59 am PDT by
A normal-looking Lightning cable that can used to steal data like passwords and send it to a hacker has been developed, Vice reports. The "OMG Cable" compared to Apple's Lightning to USB cable. The "OMG Cable" works exactly like a normal Lightning to USB cable and can log keystrokes from connected Mac keyboards, iPads, and iPhones, and then send this data to a bad actor who could be over a...
studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...