Motorola has made a conscious effort with the Xoom 2 screen. Sure, it’s the same 1200 x 800 resolution, but it’s now an IPS panel. Viewing angles approach the stated 178 degree mark, although you’d be hard-pressed to see much from there. The upgraded IPS TFT display makes pictures, video and, well, everything, far more vibrant. The latest Motorola tablet does, however, still have issues with bright and outdoor lighting. The screen also seems to be more hungry for fingerprints and smudges than anything we’ve seen before. We’re talking original iPhone-levels of fingerprint magnetism: be prepared to carry a microfiber cloth, or wear long sleeves.
Most LCDs suffer from poor outdoor visibility so the performance by the Xoom 2 isn’t surprising. If outdoor visibility is important look to Pixel Qi. The fine folks there have developed a LCD that looks like E Ink outdoors.
Corning’s Gorilla Glass does duty as the cover glass on the Motorola Xoom 2, but it seems a thick oleophobic coating might be necessary to alleviate the fingerprint magnet problem.
1200×800? That must be a typo; it’s probably 1280×800. The 10.1-inch IPS LCD combined with 1280×800 is good for a resolution of 149.45 ppi, a bit better than the 132 ppi resolution of the iPad/iPad 2. I’ve got a hunch by this time next year most if not all high-end tablets will sport resolutions double that.