Never Hertz to try: Samsung's new adaptive display tech will change frequency depending on the app you're running

Tipped to appear on upcoming Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G

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Samsung has lifted the lid on its new Adaptive Frequency screen tech, which dynamically adjusts a display's refresh rate based on the app being used. The firm says the tech is already commercially available, with plans to debut it on the Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G flagship blower.

Smartphone displays have historically been judged by a handful of metrics: things like size, display angles, pixel density, and so on. But in recent years, phone vendors have upped the ante by introducing screens with ever-increasing refresh rates, bolstered by the increasing popularity of mobile gaming, where screen responsiveness is most keenly needed.

But there's a catch: screens with faster refresh rates draw significantly more power than conventional 60Hz panels. While most phones with 120Hz and 90Hz screens allow punters to drop down to the standard 60Hz frequency, it has been something they have to actively do by adjusting the phone's settings.

Moreover, it's not always necessary for a display to operate at 120Hz. For someone plonked on their couch reading an e-book, their phone's screen can operate at a fraction of that frequency without any perceptible loss in performance quality.

Samsung said its Adaptive Frequency tech handles that switching automatically, based on the application being used. The firm claimed it can drop to refresh rates as low as 10Hz, and run as briskly as 120Hz.

Moreover, Samsung said it can produce power savings of 22 per cent, offsetting the inevitable hit imparted by today's phablet-size screens and juice-hungry processors.

It's perhaps no surprise that Samsung opted to ship its new Adaptive Frequency displays with its latest flagship, but one must not discount the possibility of it appearing elsewhere, particularly given that the chaebol does a brisk trade in components. Samsung's presser said it'll use the tech in "other advanced IT products", although didn't specify what. ®

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