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A hot potato: Apple has responded to reports highlighting the unpleasant “jelly scroll” effect some users of its new iPad Mini 6 have noticed. There was speculation over whether this is a hardware or software fault, but according to Cupertino, it’s neither: Apple says it’s normal behavior.
Reports arrived earlier this week of an issue in the well-reviewed iPad Mini 6. When scrolling in portrait mode with lots of text on the screen—reading web pages, for example—one side of the display is moving faster than the other, causing a slight tearing, aka jelly effect. It’s not that easy to notice in everyday use but is pretty apparent in the slowed-down video below.
Here is is slow-mo video of scrolling on the iPad Min I slowed down EVEN MORE in a frame-by-frame step through. Notice how the right moves up faster than the left.— Dieter Bohn (@backlon) September 22, 2021
In normal usage you barely see it, but every now and then it become noticeable. In landscape it goes away entirely pic.twitter.com/iq9LGJzsDI
Responding to the reports, Apple told Ars Technica that there is no issue to fix, and that this is normal behavior for LCD screens because of how they refresh line by line, causing a delay. However, the publication notes that the effect is not noticeable on other 60Hz LCD iPads, such as the latest $329 iPad that was released at the same time and the iPad Air 4. There’s also an invisible line dividing the middle of the screen in the iPad Mini 6 that's not present on other devices.
On the other side of the argument is tech leaker Jon Prosser, who agrees that this is typical behavior for these displays. He adds that it is present in the iPad Air.
regarding the “jelly effect” when scrolling on iPad mini:— Jon Prosser (@jon_prosser) September 27, 2021
yep. typical LCD / 60Hz behavior
happens on the iPad Air too, but that didn’t make the news 🤷♂️😂 pic.twitter.com/V5wJq5SnJx
It should be reiterated that this effect is subtle—many owners say they’ve never seen it—and is only really apparent when slowly scrolling in portrait mode. Unfortunately, that’s the orientation most people use while browsing the web, and once you see the jelly effect, it’s hard to ignore.
Most people agree that the issue is small enough not to detract from the iPad Mini 6’s positive reviews, though some buyers of the $499 tablet may disagree.