Quietly mentioned in Apple’s tech specs for the fifth-generation iPod nano is the fact that the new models use a TFT (thin film transistor) display as opposed to the standard LCD used in past models. TFT displays are a different variant on LCD technology, that can under some circumstances improve or decrease image quality; Wikipedia notes that depending on the type of TFT screen technology chosen, viewing angles and colors can be mediocre—a problem with early technology—or dramatically more impressive, with high contrast ratios, strong black depth, and faster refresh rates. By comparison, Apple lists the display in the fourth-generation iPod nano as a color LCD with LED backlight. It is unclear what, if any, affect the change in screen technologies will have on the quality of the iPod nano’s screen.
Apple quietly switches iPod nano 5G screens to TFT
Charles Starrett was a senior editor at iLounge. He's been covering the iPod, iPhone, and iPad since their inception. He has written numerous articles and reviews, and his work has been featured in multiple publications.