Originally Posted by AmericanLoco
I had a 13" Dell XPS at work with a 4K display. It was useless. Windows scaling is awful, and tons of programs just straight up didn't work correctly because of it. The thing had a pixel density comparable to that of my phone, which is completely and utterly pointless at normal laptop viewing distances. I ended up setting it to 1920x1080 to make it actually useful, and even then some programs were a bit wonky and I'd occasionally have to drop down to 1600x900.
A 12-13" laptop with a 4K120Hz display is just an unnecessary battery burner. Maybe once Windows scaling improves and more programs are made with high resolution assets it might make sense, but not right now.
"Useless" us a relative term.
If all you're doing is text editing then yes it's unnecessary, but in terms of image quality your phone doesn't have enough resolution to give a perfectly clear image either, we should have 4K smartphones as well, at least the large ones, which are nearly there already and I find it hilarious that people are so resistant to the idea of a 4K phone that they'll readily accept resolutions 90% of the way to 4K but just stop short to avoid being mocked by all the grumpy people waxing nostalgic for the old days of small utilitarian devices.
Devices need to be separated into categories of "Media Player" and "Productivity".
Yes battery life or software compatibility is a good reason to use low screen resolution, but if a high end device is intended for media consumption then 4K practically becomes a minimum requirement.
Anything "Media Player" should be 4K, doesn't matter if it's a phone, tablet, laptop or desktop.
You need a pixel density amounting to 300 Pixels Per Degree before there is enough resolution to overcome the average person's ability to perceive aliasing on the hardware level.
Really anything less than 200 Pixels Per Degree should be considered archaically low resolution, the closest distance you should be viewing your 13" 4K laptop/tablet from is about three feet, any closer and you enter the range where 8K is going to look significantly better.
4K is still low enough resolution that in the long term if software scaling is ever implemented properly in Laptops then 4K is going to become the utilitarian/productivity standard.
(60PPD=1 Arc Minute, the classic Apple marketing for "Retina" resolution, but in practice that limitation only applies to consistent line patterns and the detail you perceive on most objects does not apply. People can see 5-10x more detail than that, 300PPD is really the middle of the road for human vision, people with better eyes would want 600PPD but at that point it's more specialist equipment and not really a consumer product anymore.)