The display resolution or display modes of a digital television, computer monitor or display device is the number of distinct pixels in each dimension that can be displayed. It can be an ambiguous term especially as the displayed resolution is controlled by different factors in cathode ray tube (CRT) displays, flat-panel displays (including liquid-crystal displays) and projection displays using fixed picture-element (pixel) arrays.
As of July 2002, 1024 x 768 eXtended Graphics Array was the most common display resolution. Many web sites and multimedia products were re-designed from the previous 800 x 600 format to the layouts optimized for 1024 x 768.
The availability of inexpensive LCD monitors has made the 5:4 aspect ratio resolution of 1280 x 1024 more popular for desktop usage during the first decade of the 21st century. Many computer users including CAD users, graphic artists and video game players ran their computers at 1600 x 1200 resolution (UXGA) or higher such as 2048 x 1536 QXGA if they had the necessary equipment. Other available resolutions included oversize aspects like 1400 x 1050 SXGA+ and wide aspects like 1280 x 800 WXGA, 1440 x 900 WXGA+, 1680 x 1050 WSXGA+, and 1920 x 1200 WUXGA; monitors built to the 720p and 1080p standard are also not unusual among home media and video game players, due to the perfect screen compatibility with movie and video game releases. A new more-than-HD resolution of 2560 x 1600 WQXGA was released in 30-inch LCD monitors in 2007.
As of March 2012, 1366 x 768 was the most common display resolution.
In 2010, 27-inch LCD monitors with the 2560 x 1440-pixel resolution were released by multiple manufacturers including Apple, and in 2012, Apple introduced a 2880 x 1800 display on the MacBook Pro. Panels for professional environments, such as medical use and air traffic control, support resolutions of up to 4096 x 2160 pixels.
The 640 x 400i resolution (720 x 480i with borders disabled) was first introduced by home computers such as the Commodore Amiga and, later, Atari Falcon. These computers used interlace to boost the maximum vertical resolution.