Full HD Meet Full WS
First there was 1080p, and there was much rejoicing...until we realised that we were being limited to 1080 and losing a lot of the height on our desktops. Something I'm still sore about as it happens, but moving on. Then there was the 720/1080 divide of HD and 'full' HD. Now there's widescreen...and Ultra widescreen. At least according to some industry leading monitor manufacturers such as LG, Nec and Phillips who are now producing monitors capable of 21:9 resolution up to 2560x1080.
The extra width is, certainly, a draw for gamers. The success of feature such as AMD's Eyefinity (spreading your game across two or more monitors) will attest to that. The problem is that it's still all about width, we're still missing the extra 100 or more lines (I used to run 1600x1440!) from top to bottom. So, could this 'ultra' widescreen become the next industry standard? Unlikely if you ask me, at least as far as gaming is concerned. Though there is certainly a market for it. Most films are shot on much wider than the 'standard' 16:9, but for gaming I don't see it really cornering the market any time soon.
Again, the appeal is there, as well as a great deal of potential. But the standard? Not any time soon I'm sure. Not least because of the sheer power required to generate all those extra polygons. That kind of thing makes a dent in your performance and then some. With prices starting at £400 there's the simple cost issue as well. You can easily pick up not two, but three 21" or larger monitors for a lot less than that and have far more space to play with. As well as more options, such as running a game on one monitor and a film on the other (great for those long hours or monotonous grinding) but that's my thoughts. Let us know what you think in the comments below.