New iPad will sport Retina display, 1 million pixels more than HDTV

The iPad's display sports a 2048 by 1536 pixel display

Announced Wednesday, Apple's new iPad impresses in many ways. But perhaps most impressive of all: the device's new Retina display.

"For the first time, an iPad has a higher resolution than even the display behind me," said Apple senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller, who was brought on stage to introduce the device. As rumored, the iPad's display sports a 2048 by 1536 pixel display--over three million pixels, a million more pixels than a 1080p HDTV--with 264 pixels packed within each inch of the device's 9.7-inch display. The display also features 44 percent better color saturation than the previous model.

Apple first introduced the concept of a "Retina display" in the iPhone 4, which packed 326 pixels per inch into its 3.5-inch display. Rather than refer to a specific level of pixel density, the term defines how the average person sees a screen--at a certain distance away, the human eye can no longer distinguish the individual pixels on a device.

Although the new iPad has a lower pixel density (264 versus 326) than the iPhone 4 or 4S, that's largely due to screen size and relative distance--users hold the iPad further away from their faces than they might an iPhone.