LG’s new flagship heralds the era of ‘Quad HD’ smartphones. But do you really need more pixels than an HDTV in the palm of your hand?

“It turns out there’s a magic number right around 300 pixels per inch,” said Steve Jobs, introducing the world to the iPhone 4 in 2010, “that when you hold something around 10 to 12 inches away from your eyes, is the limit of the human retina to differentiate the pixels.”

The years that followed saw Jobs’ “magic number” became a target rival smartphones would strive towards, and eventually surpass. And as LG prepared to launch its flagship smartphone for 2014 with a whopping 538 pixels per inch, the Korean company chose to address this point head-on.

“Steve Jobs was wrong,” LG’s head of smartphone planning, Dr. Ramchan Woo, told us at the launch event in London, “We love Steve Jobs, but he was wrong.” Woo uses the example of high-quality printing, and the distinction between lines per inch and pixels per inch to back up his assertion. High-quality art books are typically printed at up to 300 lines per inch, he tells us, and to accurately represent this much detail you need around double that number in pixels per inch.

That’s where the LG G3 comes in. With a 5.5-inch display packed with more pixels than any mainstream phone, LG is hoping the G3’s visual credentials will help set it apart in an increasingly crowded high-end smartphone market.

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