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2020’s smartphone notch successor might actually be worse than the notch

If you’re fed up with the notch at the top of your smartphone screen, a successor might be just around the corner… but it’s arguably worse than the notch.

Reliable technology tipster Ice Universe has claimed that 2020 will see the start of a new trend; namely, ‘mosaic’-style under-display selfie cameras.

Related: Best smartphones

That might initially appear to be an ideal solution to the problem of an intrusive notch or cutout camera in the top of your screen, but there’s still a hitch to the new designs.

Dubbed ‘mosaic’ screens, the panel directly above the selfie camera will be of noticeably lower quality than the rest of the screen, standing out as as an imperfection as shown below:

It remains to be seen whether consumers will prefer this design to notches, and we’re also looking forward to checking the quality of the selfie cameras that will be housed underneath the screen in this manner.

2019 saw a mind-bending variety of approaches to the notch, including the wide notch favoured by the iPhone 11, more subtle teardrop notches like that of the Huawei P30 Pro, and cutout selfie cameras such as the Samsung Galaxy S10.

Currently there are already a few options for people who wish to buy a phone that’s free from these minor interruptions; the OnePlus 7T Pro, Realme X2 Pro, and the Oppo Reno 2, all have found a way around the problem by instead offering pop-up selfie cameras.

This solution still looks to remain as your best option this year if you want to avoid any imperfections in the screen, given the flaws of the mosaic design.

Related: Best Android phones

In our breakdown of what we’d like to see from the iPhone 12, we’ve listed a change to the large notch that the series has featured since the iPhone X arrived on the scene. B

ut due to Apple’s unique design aesthetic, it seems very unlikely that the brand would adopt this new unfinished-looking “mosaic” technology. Whatever screen design Apple does eventually decide on could well send a new trend mainstream, similar to what happened with the notch back in 2017.

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