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We're not so sure about HP Sure View

We're not so sure about HP Sure View
We're not so sure about HP Sure View
On paper, HP Sure View sounds great with its ability to limit viewing angles with just a press of a button. In practice, however, the feature entails a host of other disadvantages that potential owners should be aware of.
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If you've ever worked on important documents or presentations while flying coach, then you've probably had awkward moments involving strangers peeking over your shoulder and screen. HP Sure View technology addresses these sorts of privacy concerns by limiting the viewing angle of the display to make it harder for peripheral viewers to see. It manifests as a special "light control" film within the display that blocks or passes the backlight at different angles depending on the setting. Unlike the generic plastic privacy filters you can buy over the counter, HP Sure View can be electronically toggled on or off with a button.

After testing a handful of HP laptops with Sure View, however, we can't say we're big fans of the technology. Sure View displays are noticeably blurrier and almost oily when compared to the typical non-Sure View glossy displays that are crisper and more vivid including HP's own Spectre series. Furthermore, apparent brightness would begin dropping much sooner and at shallower angles to make portrait mode difficult to use. To make matters worse, these drawbacks would occur even when Sure View is disabled meaning owners of Sure View laptops would be stuck with blurry displays and limited viewing angles no matter the setting; enabling Sure View would simply magnify these disadvantages.

We like the concept of Sure View as a security feature to combat "visual hacking". Unfortunately, Sure View impacts the visual experience for the primary user almost as much as any nearby visual hacker. it does its job very well albeit at a high cost. A good security feature should never be a major inconvenience to the primary user that it is supposed to protect. In this case, it's hard to ignore the disadvantages of Sure View if you value preserving viewing angles and a crisp picture.

Dragonfly Max with Sure View on. Viewing angles are limited to prevent visual hacking
Dragonfly Max with Sure View on. Viewing angles are limited to prevent visual hacking
Dragonfly Max with Sure View off. Viewing angles and apparent brightness are still shallower and dimmer when compared to a regular non-Sure View laptop
Dragonfly Max with Sure View off. Viewing angles and apparent brightness are still shallower and dimmer when compared to a regular non-Sure View laptop
Subpixel array on Dragonfly Max with Sure View. The grainy pixels lead to grainier picture quality
Subpixel array on Dragonfly Max with Sure View. The grainy pixels lead to grainier picture quality
Subpixel array on Spectre x360 13 with no Sure View option. Pixels are crisp and defined for a very clean picture
Subpixel array on Spectre x360 13 with no Sure View option. Pixels are crisp and defined for a very clean picture
Dragonfly Max with Sure View off
Dragonfly Max with Sure View off
Spectre x360 13 with no Sure View. Viewing angles are still better than the Dragonfly Max even when Sure View is turned off on the Dragonfly Max
Spectre x360 13 with no Sure View. Viewing angles are still better than the Dragonfly Max even when Sure View is turned off on the Dragonfly Max

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Allen Ngo
Allen Ngo - Lead Editor U.S. - 4535 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2011
After graduating with a B.S. in environmental hydrodynamics from the University of California, I studied reactor physics to become licensed by the U.S. NRC to operate nuclear reactors. There's a striking level of appreciation you gain for everyday consumer electronics after working with modern nuclear reactivity systems astonishingly powered by computers from the 80s. When I'm not managing day-to-day activities and US review articles on Notebookcheck, you can catch me following the eSports scene and the latest gaming news.
contact me via: @AllenNgoNBC
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 06 > We're not so sure about HP Sure View
Allen Ngo, 2021-06- 8 (Update: 2021-06- 7)