Technology Explained

AMOLED Burn-In Can Be Avoided! And It’s Easy!

Kannon Yamada Updated 21-03-2019

AMOLED burn-in on screens and displays can’t be repaired, but you can slow it down and reduce its visibility by using a few simple tricks, which can also massively increase battery life.


If you see a persistent image etched into your screen and own an Android device, iPhone X, or iPhone XS, your device may have screen burn-in.

What Is AMOLED Screen Burn-In?

This is an image of the Dell XPS 13 which has image retention issues similar to OLED screen burn-in

If your screen has an afterimage, mostly where your navigation bar is, and you have an OLED display, you might have burn-in.

The individual pixels within an Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) decay when they emit light. The burn-in appears because individual pixels do not decay at the same rate. The most used light-emitting pixels, such as for navigation and status icons, wear out first.

So the more you use a device, the more visible the burn-in.


It doesn’t help that many user-interface buttons are white. For an AMOLED panel, to produce white light the display switches on three different sub-pixels in close proximity to one another. Each sub-pixel produces a different color: red, blue, and green. Together they appear white.

On smartphones, red sub-pixels are the most durable, followed by green. Blue colors wear out the fastest. When you see burn-in it’s often caused by a weakening blue sub-pixel. All “fixes” aim at addressing the failing blue sub-pixel.

AMOLED Screen Burn-In Test (Android)

This is an image of a Google Pixel 2 OLED's display with minor burn-in issues

Everyone with an OLED display has some burn-in. But oftentimes it’s not fully visible unless you display a solid color at maximum brightness. The Android operating system has access to a lot of apps that detect burn-in damage. The best of these is Screen Test by developer Hajime Namura.


Screen Test is ultra simple: install and run the app. Touching the screen shifts between colors and patterns. If you see a persistent image impression or blotchy coloration, you have burn-in.

For my AMOLED phone, I’ve taken every precaution against screen burn-in. Even so, the display is still a little blotchy after over a year of use. Fortunately, there are no indications of burn-in where the navigation buttons are.

If the app does indicate burn-in (and it almost always does), some options are available to reduce its appearance.

AMOLED Screen Burn-In Fixes and Hacks

Here are a some of my favorites methods for avoiding AMOLED screen burn-in:

  1. Lower screen brightness and timeout.
  2. Use an immersive full-screen mode.
  3. Change wallpaper to black.
  4. Change launcher.
  5. Install an OLED friendly dark icons.
  6. Install Firefox Mobile with a dark theme.
  7. You can even install an OLED-friendly keyboard.

Let’s take a look at each of these in more detail so you can fix a burned-in screen Screen Burn-In Fixes and Why LCD Can Be Fixed LCD, plasma, OLED displays, even old CRT televisions can be damaged by screen burn-in. Here's how can you fix screen burn-in. Read More .

1. Lower Screen Brightness and Screen Timeout

The less time your screen stays on, the better its lifespan. Also, the more intense the brightness, the shorter the display’s life. After that, consider installing a few applications. The first steps everyone should take:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Then go to Display.
  3. Reduce screen brightness (or set to automatic brightness).
  4. Decrease screen timeout.

2. Immersive Full-Screen Mode (Android)

Immersive mode in Android allows the removal of the top and bottom bars in Android’s user interface. We’ve covered Android 4.4’s introduction of immersive mode Get Immersive Mode For All Android Apps – No Root Required Immersive Mode was one of the cooler features introduced in Android KitKat, but it was only introduced for certain apps. Now you can get Immersive Mode across all your apps! Read More . Unfortunately, Google implemented this feature on a per-app basis, so if you wanted to rid yourself of persistent on-screen images, you’d need to configure it for every app on your device. Fortunately, there’s a handful of apps that do this automatically for you.


A great app that can remove the navigation bar is GMD Immersive. It gets rid of the persistent navigation buttons at the bottom of an Android device, and, when needed, you can summon the navigation or Action Bar by sliding your finger from the top or bottom of the screen.

It’s both free and without advertisements, although the app sticks a red line at the bottom of the screen. As mentioned earlier, red light is less damaging to the screen relative to white or blue, so it’s not that big an issue.

You can remove the red line, though it costs $3.32 through an in-app purchase. (What are in-app purchases?)

Download: GMD Immersive for Android (Free with in-app purchases)

3. Change Wallpaper to Black (Android)

Some might notice that the stock wallpapers in Android aren’t usually suited for OLED screens. OLED screens consume very little energy when displaying the color black, and they do not burn-in when displaying blacks. Unfortunately, older Android versions don’t include a solid black wallpaper option.

Fortunately, the free app Colors, from developer Tim Clark, allows users to change their wallpaper to a solid color. Just install and run the app, then choose a solid black background as the new wallpaper.

Using a black wallpaper will actually improve the battery performance of your device, so this one is a win-win. However, if you have Android 8.0 or newer, you might already have solid colors available as a wallpaper.

Download: Colors for Android (Free)

4. Change Your Launcher (Android, iPhone)

The default Android Google Experience Launcher isn’t exactly OLED friendly. In Android 5.0, it forces the App Drawer wallpaper to white (the worst color for OLED screens). One of the better launchers for darker colors is Nova Launcher. Not only is it more responsive, it offers better customization options.

Download: Nova Launcher for Android (Free)

Enable Dark Mode for Android 8.0 Launcher

Android 8.0 and newer, though, includes a dark mode. To enable dark mode:

  1. Tap on Settings.
  2. Choose Display.
  3. Tap on Advanced.
  4. Select Dark mode from the options.

iOS/iPhone OLED Friendly Option

The upcoming version of iOS will finally include a dark theme. However, for those of you with iOS 11 or later, you can install OLEDX. The app allows for the ambient display of the weather, the time, and more.

Download: OLEDX for iPhone (Free with a $2.99 optional purchase)

5. Install AMOLED-Friendly Dark Icons (Android)

Minma Icon Pack (which just went completely free) changes your bright, screen-damaging icons to a darker, OLED-friendly palette. Over 300 icons are available, which cover the default icons as well as many others.

Minma is compatible with most Android launchers and, best of all, it’s completely free.

Download: Minma Icon Pack for Android (Free)

6. Install Firefox Mobile With a Dark Theme (Android, iPhone)

The only browser that I’m aware of that has a default dark theme is Firefox Mobile. Firefox offers an optional dark theme by default but it isn’t very good. I recommend installing an add-on. The easiest to use add-on is Dark Night Mode.

Download: Firefox Mobile for Android | iOS (Free)

7. AMOLED-Friendly Keyboard (Android)

This is a screenshot of SwiftKey's virtual keyboard with the Pumpkin theme enabled

Android has a few virtual keyboard options that can reduce burn-in (and improve battery life). The best of these is SwiftKey, which allows users to change the color of their keyboards. The best I’ve seen so far is SwiftKey’s Pumpkin keyboard theme, although others are available.

My favorite theme is Pumpkin, which uses black keys with an orange typeface.

Download: SwiftKey for Android (Free)

Other Screen Burn-In Fixes (Not Recommended)

There are a few other burn-in repair tools, but I don’t recommend them since they either require root access and/or can increase screen damage. However, for reference, you can read about them below and why using them is a bad idea. They fall into two categories:

  1. Invert colors.
  2. Screen burn-in tools.

1. Invert Colors to Reduce Existing Burn-In

This is a screenshot of the Android launcher with inverted colors

I do not recommend using this option unless your screen is already trashed. It will cause additional damage but may reduce the appearance of already existing on-screen burn. Inverting colors simply reverses the colors displayed on your screen. Whites become blacks and vice-versa.

If you use the phone with the colors inverted for extended periods of time, it will burn-in the areas surrounding the burned-in navigation bar, reducing its visibility.

The Invert colors option was introduced in Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) in order to reduce eye-strain when reading in the evening. It’s not at all designed for the purpose of combating burn-in and remains experimental. To invert colors take the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Settings.
  2. Select Accessibility > Display.
  3. Turn on Color inversion.

2. Screen Burn-In Tools

Several different tools claim to reduce the appearance of burn-in by attempting to age the entirety of your OLED panel. These screen burn-in tools flash red, green, and blue (or other) colors on your screen.

None of these are very good, although they might do what they claim. They might also make your burn-in far worse.

The reason is pretty simple: AMOLED burn-in occurs as a natural part of an OLED’s life cycle. Tools that claim to fix OLED burn-in will cause uniform damage across all AMOLED pixels thus reducing its life expectancy.

Do You Have AMOLED Screen Burn-In?

None of these methods will stop the inevitable and slow destruction of your device’s screen. However, using all the recommended options in this article will dramatically decrease the rate at which it decays. That said, some Galaxy Nexus users (one of the first AMOLED phones) have phones with very little burn-in.

If you don’t have an OLED display and your device has a stuck pixel, check out ways to fix a dead pixel 5 Ways to Fix a Stuck Pixel on Your Screen A dead or stuck pixel on your screen can be annoying. Here are the best ways to test your screen and how to fix dead pixels. Read More .

Image Credits: flames/Shutterstock

Related topics: AMOLED, Screen Burn-in, Smartphone Repair, Troubleshooting.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. Weisse
    December 17, 2017 at 12:53 am

    Thank you so much for the very informative article and reply to comments.
    I just got a new unlocked Galaxy S8 and wonder if these screens are better than their previous models.
    I would like to ask you about their Display settings. At first I set mine to “Adaptive Display” with Advanced settings of blue being @1/2 capacity, green @3/4 and red @1/4. Reading your article further I wonder if it wouldn't be better to set it to AMOLED cinema or AMOLED photo (seems to be more yellowish than cinema). Both AMOLED settings are close to my Adaptive Display with Advanced color limitations.
    I already use SwiftKey for years due to multiple languages and like their dark theme keyboards. I am happy these are a benefit to AMOLED screens.

    • Kannon Yamada
      December 17, 2017 at 1:07 am

      The manufacturer's claim has always been that they have gotten better and more resistant to burn in than previous models. The main issue has always been the blue producing OLEDs and they have supposedly gotten MTBF ratings that are close to LCD panels.

      I had an S8 but can't remember the specific settings that were available for adjusting display color (I really don't remember being able to control hue). In theory, reducing blue hue intensity should reduce burn-in. However, some people have argued that pumping up the red OLEDs may wear those OLEDs out faster.

      In my experience, those people are wrong. Reducing the use of blue OLEDs will reduce the appearance of burn-in.

  2. Dave Jones
    August 30, 2017 at 10:42 pm

    Hi I have a ZTE axon 7. 64gb.on a white screen I can already see burn in off all buttons, it's 8 months in, adore the phone though, would like to remove it though but guess it's a trade off for the phone being as good contrast as it is

  3. Cade
    May 3, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Ye hello my iPhone has a burn in an none of these tips work

    • Kannon Yamada
      May 3, 2017 at 6:28 pm

      Hi Cade, your iPhone doesn't have an AMOLED or OLED display. It has a Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) with an LED backlight. If you do have burn-in, it will go back to normal over time. Just wait a few weeks and try not to leave the screen on all the time on the same image.

  4. Cade
    May 3, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Ye hey I hav a iPhone and I hav screen an this tip doesn't work

    • Kannon Yamada
      May 3, 2017 at 6:30 pm

      I forgot to mention that LCD screens CAN retain an after image if they're left on a still image for too long. However, LCD panels go back to normal over time. You only need to change your usage habits. So, for example, if you have your screen set to never time out while charging, the screen will stay on the same image overnight, which can cause the retention of an afterimage.

  5. Conundrum1701
    February 19, 2017 at 5:41 pm

    Yup, have it on the S3 and Note 4. To a lesser amount on the S4
    I did find that setting inverterd colors then cycling through on *#0*# until you find yellow seems to work somewhat, left it running like this and will see what effect this has long term (saw some noticeable improvement even for a few hours)

    • Kannon
      February 24, 2017 at 3:35 pm

      Hmmm... I'm not familiar with this technique. Has this worked for you?

      • Conundrum
        February 24, 2017 at 8:13 pm

        Hi, yes amazingly it did help. I should really study this further, as this might be an entirely new way to "fix" burn-in.

        It seems that the screen does not heat up much in this mode, tested with IR thermometer. This tallies nicely with what people have reported about white backgrounds as the losses on the blue emitter(s) are much higher.
        If you want to email me see my 4HV handle "Conundrum" also Twitter "TooManySecrets" :-)

        • OliS1973
          September 30, 2017 at 11:50 pm

          Can you explain how you do this (inverting colors and cycling through until you find yellow etc.)? I have a galaxy tab s2 and got permanent images from youtube display ... I have android 7.0 (nougat?) And found only "negative colors" in the accessibility settings...

          Thx for your help..


  6. Kevin Vanderpool
    January 21, 2017 at 9:57 am

    I was wondering, if I shared a screenshot of my Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge burn in. would you maybe possibly be able to tell me the severity of it. and how long you think my screen life and its longevity could be. please and thank you in advance

    • Kannon
      January 25, 2017 at 12:42 pm

      Hi Kevin, you'd need to take a picture of the burn-in with another camera. The built in screenshot utility inside of Android won't capture burn-in.

      But, yes, I'd be glad to tell you how severe it is. For the most part, burn-in is only as bad as it is distracting. If you can still read your phone's display (and you're out of warranty), there's no reason to replace it.

  7. Daniel
    December 19, 2016 at 9:31 pm

    I just bought a nexus 6p (the last one in the store) and it already has the home screen burnt in
    this is my first AMOLED phone and i didn't knew this could happen, what should i do? return the phone or try to fix it?

    • Kannon Y
      January 3, 2017 at 5:17 pm

      Pretty much, return the phone. Burn in is permanent and it's unacceptable on a brand new phone. It sounds like they may have given you a refurbished model.

      • Daniel Marinescu
        January 3, 2017 at 8:51 pm

        Thx for the advice, I've already returned it and got it from another store brand new an sealed, great phone and alot cheaper than pixel xl ;)

        • Kannon Y
          January 6, 2017 at 9:25 pm

          Nice! I ended up getting a Pixel XL and semi regret it. It's less reliable than I expected and not much better than a Nexus 6P.

  8. Nagrom
    November 29, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    My solution was to get on Twitter and get Verizon to replace my phone.

    • Kannon Y
      November 29, 2016 at 9:20 pm

      Their customer service wouldn't replace it?

  9. Kenneth
    August 25, 2016 at 6:09 pm

    I will never use the screen burn in tool again with the red blue and green flashing images, and worst part is that I have used it about one hour a day to prevent my screen from getting burn in. I have done this for a month on my new s7 edge. How much do you think I have damaged my screen? One hour per day in 30 days! Or does the uniformed damages only occur/happen if I run it several hours in a row like 8-10 hours. I'm so angry at my self. Please let me know what you think, and thank you for a great articel.

    • Kannon Yamada
      August 25, 2016 at 6:19 pm

      Thanks for the kind words Kenneth! Those flashing lights were originally designed for LCD screen which sometimes had stuck pixels. By flashing colors across the screen, it normally causes the pixel to become unstuck. That tool is ridiculous because it's trying to solve burn-in by using a method that was designed for LCD screens.

    • Kannon Yamada
      August 25, 2016 at 6:23 pm

      I almost forgot to respond to your question -- you probably won't notice the damage as it's burning in all pixels evenly. It may impact your color accuracy, although you can gauge this for yourself.

      Burn-in occurs naturally as a part of the OLED's life cycle. Each light emitting sub pixel decays over time. The blue sub pixels decay at a faster rate than the green or red, so you might see a shift toward green or red over time. But I don't think you'll notice it if you haven't already. It's usually a very gradual process that takes months and years, rather than just a few days.

      The most severe burn in that I've seen always is on department store demo models, which display the same image continuously for weeks or even months. Just a few hours probably generates damage that you can't even notice.

  10. Melissa
    July 31, 2016 at 1:27 am

    I received a--refurbished--Samsung Galaxy S5 as a gift from a friend. I started having issues with the screen flickering, not illuminating when the phone rang, and inconsistent screen illumination when using the power button or the home button, though it was still responsive to touch.

    I recently got the screen replaced for $170 (I'm in Salinas, CA), and I no longer have the inconsistent illumination and flickering problems, but AFTER I got the phone back, I noticed screen burn-in at the bottom, with icons that I have never had in those positions (except the immobile "apps" icon in the bottom-right position). I brought it back to the repair place, and they ordered another screen saying sometimes they can arrive flawed, and that they can ONLY be purchased directly from Samsung (b/c I'd asked if they'd used a refurbished screen or something). They ordered me a second replacement screen.

    So today I brought it back for the second screen replacement, and the burn-in is STILL there, and it's actually worse than it was before. I'm seeing the "mail" "camera" and "gallery" icons in places I've never had them. After having read some app reviews, I'm reluctant to use burn-in fixer apps...I guess I will try a factory restore and see what happens.

    • Kannon Yamada
      August 25, 2016 at 6:17 pm

      Sorry for the late response. It appears that they're recycling screens from damaged phones. That's a really unethical act, considering that you're paying full price for the screen.

  11. PhilT
    July 7, 2016 at 12:15 pm

    My S5 has burn-in where the 'Apps' Icon is located (bottom-right).
    Moving it would reduce further burn in - but it is the only thing that cant be moved !!
    I can move all other icons but not this one.

    • Kannon Yamada
      July 11, 2016 at 11:40 pm

      That's really bad design on Samsung's side. I don't think there's much that can be done unless you change the launcher maybe?

  12. Gianni
    July 2, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    I bought a used Galaxy Tab S2 (9.7") and the screen has a strange "burn-in" effect: the image "permanently inprinted" is flipped horizontally! I can clearly see 4 buttons, but the words are flipped: "Favorite", "Edit", "Share" and "Delete" are written from right to left.
    How was that even possible?
    Do you have any idea?
    Thank you,

    • Kannon Yamada
      July 11, 2016 at 11:42 pm

      That's really strange. Most of the time burn-in is not so visible that you can read the words. It's definitely even weirder that the words are flipped. Could it be by design? It sounds almost as if that's by design. Have you tried a factory reset yet?

      • Gianni
        July 12, 2016 at 12:15 am

        I didn't try the factory reset yet...
        If you want see the pictures and try to figure out what is going on, please see:

        4 flipped buttons:

        The full screen:

        Close up of the flipped buttons:

        You can clearly see the text... It's like the image is all the time on top of the actual application window...

        Reaaally strange!
        Thank you so much for your interest and help!

      • Anonymous
        July 12, 2016 at 2:05 am

        No, I didn't... I'm not sure how to do a factory reset and if it would affect the screen.
        If you'd like to have a look at the flipped image, here I have 3 crops:

        1- the buttons

        2- the full screen

        3- a close up

        Thank you so much for your help!

      • Anonymous
        July 12, 2016 at 2:06 am

        No, I didn't... I'm not sure how to do a factory reset and if it would affect the screen.
        If you'd like to have a look at the flipped image, here I have 3 crops:

        1- the buttons

        2- the full screen

        3- a close up

        Thank you so much for your help!

        • Kannon Yamada
          July 12, 2016 at 4:49 am

          OK, that is certainly burn-in, but I've never seen burn-in that's so precisely carved into the screen. It looks like they enabled RTL mode in developer options, which makes one-handed use easier on left-handers. But what's really crazy is that it looks like they just left the phone on the same screen constantly.

          If they were tinkering around in developer options, they might have enabled the phone to never sleep while plugged in. That's a horrible thing to do to an AMOLED screen. The damage appears to be irreversible. I'm very sorry. But thank you very much for sharing the screenshots.

          The Samsung Galaxy S2 is, in my opinion, the best tablet on today's market. Even with the burn-in, you made the right choice. May I ask how much of a discount it was at?

        • Anonymous
          July 12, 2016 at 10:33 am

          I still don't understand how anyone could be using the screen flipped... eteleD instead of Delete, etirovaF instead of Favorite :D
          Anyway, it was a purchase from the big auction site for 300US, where it was described as 99.99% conditions... The moment I received the tablet I immediately discovered the screen problem, so I asked for a partial refund of 50US, cause the costs of returning it were too hight from my country to send back to the US.
          The seller accepted to refund, so now I have a 250 US ab S2, which I consider too much for the kind of screen issue... but that happens when you buy from a 97.8% feedback seller... I should have followed the rule: never buy from sellers with a feedback lower than bad!
          Thank you so much for your kind assistance,
          innaiG :D

        • Kannon Yamada
          July 15, 2016 at 7:56 pm

          My pleasure. I'm sorry about the degree of burn in. For $250, it's almost worth it, but I'm not sure about the exchange rate and it may have been more expensive in your region.

          We will probably never know how it was caused, unfortunately. But outside of user error, my best guess is it was used as some kind of point-of-sale device. A POS device might be constantly running on the same screen. I think that some apps support RTL mode, in which case they automatically correct the direction that the text flows in.

          The S2 is probably the lightest tablet ever made, so it might have been customized to be used with a single hand to run a proprietary application.

  13. Faith
    April 3, 2016 at 7:53 pm

    Bought a Note 5 in December. Within 2 months I had burn in on the bottom and top of the phone. Returned to AT&T under warranty for a "certified like new" phone which kinda pissed me off since I had the phone less than 8 weeks but according to them my problem wasn't a "known issue" to them so not eligible for new phone. I'll see how this screen and phone works out for 2 months. Samsung knows this is an issue and I'm sure carriers do as well. Grrrrr

    • Kannon Yamada
      April 6, 2016 at 8:43 am

      That's really frustrating. They KNOW about the burn-in issue. It varies by individual user and screen quality, but Samsung's Note 5 is supposed to use a top-of-the-line screen that doesn't suffer from burn-in anymore. The fact that burn-in is still happening suggests that they haven't fixed the issue yet.

      AMOLED screens just became cheaper to produce than LCD. We're going to see a lot more AMOLED screens out there now, even though LCD is much more durable. It's sad.

    • Anonymous
      June 11, 2016 at 9:27 pm

      those problems are very common, its jsut that the most people are god-damn plebs who dont care about problems like that so samsung will keep selling their garbage.

      • Kannon Yamada
        June 11, 2016 at 9:32 pm

        Most people I know with AMOLED screens complain loudly about burn-in. But because they upgrade their phone every two years, they're not really concerned about it. That's more by design. Carriers love selling new phones and AMOLED fits right into their planned obsolescence strategy.

        Samsung clearly understands that burn-in exists because they design most of their phones with capacitive buttons -- which allows them to dispense with the soft keys.

  14. Hany
    March 26, 2016 at 4:16 pm

    My LG V10 bought it from one month and i have the keyboard burn in whenever it Appears It disappear again I using that app Screen Burn-in Tool and after the burn in disappear when i'm using the keyboard again its appear I used that invert colors option and helped like the app but I have the burn in again
    I changed the theme of keyboard from white to black the letters on the black theme is white so I have the burn in again
    how can i stop that stupid burn ?!!

    • Kannon Yamada
      March 28, 2016 at 4:43 pm

      Burn-in is permanent. There's not much you can do, although a few methods will reduce the distinctiveness of the burn-in. It sounds like you've tried everything. The only other option is to return the device and hope the next AMOLED panel offers better quality.

      I was under the impression that the LG V10 has an LCD screen, not an AMOLED. It does use Quantum Dot technology, although I'm not sure whether or not it's Quantum Dot backlighting or something else entirely. It may be that you are simply suffering from persistence, rather than burn-in. LCD screens do occasionally retain frequently displayed images, but they eventually go back to normal after a while. Judging from your description of the issue, it sounds like the burn-in is going away, which means you just have some kind of image persistence issue.

      I can't say with certainty, but color inversion might be a good option for the V10.

      • Conundrum
        March 4, 2017 at 8:10 am

        Qdots also burn in, but the software mitigates this a lot.

        Also the AMOLED burn in is reversible, I am trying to do a patent search at the moment as my technique (see earlier posts) plus some other undocumented methods involving putting the burned screen on a test fixture can reverse the damage. It seems that one mechanism that has been overlooked is the actual drive transistors under each pixel which are comparatively easy to repair.

        The mechanism for degrading blue is substantially different nonemissive recombination, you can plainly see it on an IR thermometer!
        Also ITO migration, calcium migration (cough Li-ion /cough) and other interesting features which suggest that the permanent damage is nothing of the sort but still needs special procedures to fix.

  15. Arkaney
    March 11, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    Galaxy s3 lasted 2-3years before I noticed it and then it got relaly bad within a few months. Replaced the screen with a cheap screen (I suspect it isn't amoled) and it is almost completely covered with burn ins all over the screen. It was a throwaway phone at that point since I upgraded and a good thing I learned from that.

    Don't cheap out on replacement screens if you're going to stick with your phone!

    • Kannon Yamada
      March 12, 2016 at 11:34 am

      It sounds like the replacement screen was also AMOLED. LCD screens are pretty burn-in resistant. And when they do suffer burn-in, they oftentimes slowly revert back to normal.

      • Arkaney
        March 14, 2016 at 3:01 am

        After months of no use I powered it up again and it was almost black. Maybe it started with burn-ins and now the actual pixels are degrading or something. It doesn't matter now since I don't use it but it was strange at the time.

  16. Jim
    March 11, 2016 at 1:34 pm

    My wife plays solitaire - a lot - this caused screen burn in under 2 years on a Galaxy S4.

  17. Clayton
    March 10, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    I didn't even know this was an issue until I noticed on my Galaxy Note 5. I'm kinda pissed about it.

    Less than 6 months old.

    Stupid Google widget burned in.

    • Kannon Yamada
      March 11, 2016 at 1:49 pm

      Samsung panels are supposedly higher quality than competitors. But even so, that's pretty new. It shouldn't be suffering from burn-in this early.

    • Johanneslo
      March 19, 2016 at 9:31 pm

      I had a note 4 with a burned in screen after 10 months :) I send it for repair and it was fully fixed under warranty ! So I suggest you do the same :)

  18. RMnDC
    March 4, 2016 at 1:20 pm

    Nexus 6P here, only have had it a few months and the burn in is terrible. My love of the phone ended quickly.

    • Kannon Yamada
      March 11, 2016 at 1:48 pm

      The good news is that you should still be covered by warranty.

  19. Anthony
    February 10, 2016 at 9:25 pm

    Well i got the phone used...but never use brightness about 50% and never stay on the same for more then a few minutes...then my last question is...will it just get worse on its own...or will it stay the same if i am careful?

    • Kannon Yamada
      February 10, 2016 at 9:29 pm

      Like all AMOLED screens, it will get worse over time. Reducing brightness will decrease burn in substantially. For example, my Moto X 2014 doesn't have any signs of burn-in (lowest brightness setting).

      One of the very first AMOLED screens in a smartphone was the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. People continue reporting that despite horrible screen burn-in, the phone still works fine.

  20. Anthony
    February 10, 2016 at 6:30 am

    Once screen burn has long will the screen last? With light screen burn with the screen last a while? Whats life expectancy of a screen with screen burn...thanks

    • Kannon Yamada
      February 10, 2016 at 6:00 pm

      A very, very long time. Screen burn-in can eventually make the screen unviewable, but even after it becomes visible, it can take a very long time before it makes the screen unusable.

      • Anthony
        February 10, 2016 at 8:17 pm

        So screen burn wont make the screen just stop working...mine is super is there but doesnt effect anything...

        • Kannon Yamada
          February 10, 2016 at 8:24 pm

          It shouldn't. It will take some time before it comes unusable. Although it may become distracting long before that.

  21. Chad
    February 10, 2016 at 5:30 am

    I don't know why but I did not experienced any burn-ins in my Samsung Galaxy S2 until now.

    • Kannon Yamada
      February 10, 2016 at 6:01 pm

      It depends on usage. If you have anything that is constantly showing up on the screen, you'll see burn-in. Motorola phones are probably the worst because they use the combination of on-screen buttons and AMOLED screens. Samsung plays around this shortcoming by using capacitive physical buttons instead of the action bar.

  22. Chris
    January 28, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    I have a galaxy tab 10.5 which I use in portrait mode. I have had the screen replaced once or burn in, now it's one the same. Out of warrenty so no free repair. Bugs the he'll out of me but not worth over 200 to fix

    • Kannon Yamada
      January 28, 2016 at 6:51 pm

      That's terrible, Chris. I'm really sorry about that.

  23. Said C
    January 16, 2016 at 11:51 pm

    I have a Galaxy Nexus. Everytime when the display has to show the color red there are thin, black stripes over the red part. Is that a burn-in too or something else?

    • Kannon Yamada
      January 28, 2016 at 6:51 pm

      I don't think that's caused by the screen. That sounds like a GPU issue. If the problem disappears, then it's not burn-in.

  24. Bhaskar
    January 15, 2016 at 7:58 am

    You said that LCDs don't have these burn-in tendencies but I had a Moto G 1st generation with IPS LCD and the virtual keys at the bottom were imprinted on the device and I observed it particularly while watching movies too,why so?

    • Kannon Yamada
      January 15, 2016 at 9:44 pm

      Some LCDs can retain images, but over time they go back to normal. I've heard of rare cases in which the damage is permanent, but I've never seen it happen. OLED burn in is permanent.

  25. Chris
    January 4, 2016 at 9:39 pm

    I have an LG G4 H818P model. I have burin-in/ screen image retention issues. This has quantum ips lcd npt amoled. Why is that? Thanks.

    • Kannon Yamada
      January 7, 2016 at 8:11 pm

      I'm not familiar with that particular model, but there's different kinds of Quantum smartphone displays out there. There's Quantum Dot screen technology, which is highly susceptible to burn-in (I wasn't aware it was used in any variation of the G4) and then there's the Quantum backlight. I think Quantum backlighting relies on blue phosphors and so I do not think it is susceptible to burn-in, since it still uses a traditional LCD screen.

      • Chris
        January 7, 2016 at 9:11 pm

        Thank you Mr. Kannon Yamada.
        According to an article i read in:

        LG G4 uses IPS Quantum Display.

        Quantum Dot uses blue LEDs while the Quantum Display uses both blue and white LEDs. Quantum Display uses potassium and nitrogen based compounds in combination with the blue LED to achieve red and green colours where Quantum Dot uses that tube or film layer.

        • Kannon Yamada
          January 18, 2016 at 12:41 am

          Thanks for sharing the article, Chris. That was a really good read.

          From what I've just read (literally, I just read this), they are referring to the backlighting and not the actual IPS LCD display. Supposedly, Quantum Dots decay over time, which is why they are susceptible to burn-in. If a backlight began to decay, you'd only notice weaker and/or splotchy colors. Burn-in occurs when the individual pixels began to break down.

          LCD screens can suffer from burn-in, but this fades away. It's more like the pixels get stuck, rather than them actually burning out. I have heard of permanent burn-in on LCD screens, but it's fairly rare.

          However, burn-in has occurred on devices such as the Dell XPS 13 and iPad Mini, which use IGZO backplanes and regular IPS LCD screens. Maybe newer technology is more prone to fault?

          If you're seeing burn-in that doesn't fade, that's really bad. It could be a bad panel or maybe the technology just isn't ready yet. Have you spoken with LG customer service yet?

  26. psf
    December 30, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    LG V10 has a IPS LCD not amoled screen. no burn in here.

    • Hany
      March 26, 2016 at 4:17 pm

      On my V10 I got burn in !!

  27. Connor
    November 26, 2015 at 9:18 am

    Man, this is terrible. I went to Best Buy today and I noticed burn in on all the Tab S2 9.7 and 8 display tablets. The Tab A 9.7 was fine. This is a deal breaker for me and I'm hoping that the next generation goes to some other type of display. I would much rather have a duller display than worry about burn-in within a year. I might get the Tab A, but I really was hoping for a more powerful tablet. Shame, really.

  28. Nathan
    November 22, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    I've had two Galaxy S4s over the last year, used a white letter on green background swiftkey theme and always had the screen brightness on maximum. I guess I did pretty much everything wrong >_<

    • Nathan
      November 22, 2015 at 4:40 pm

      I should clarify that both of them have had burn in, so like, 6 month lifespan if you do the opposite of what this article recommends haha.

  29. Jerry
    November 18, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    My 1st Galaxy Note Edge have a ghost image of my keyboard burn-on on my screen. Had it warranty replacement with a new Note Edge. Had for 3 months now and saw the same keyboard burn-in on my screen again. This time, It'll be my 2nd time getting it replace. I've always been with Samsung, even have the Gear S. This time, I'm going to root my Note Edge and modify the screen and declock the GPU and CPU under sleep or idle.

    • Kannon Yamada
      November 19, 2015 at 11:02 am

      Have you tried a dark themed keyboard?

      • Jerry Fang
        November 19, 2015 at 4:56 pm

        No, I have to root my phone. Or you know where I can get a darker keyboard without rooting and have swipe function?

        • Kannon Yamada
          November 20, 2015 at 11:10 am

          Samsung phones don't allow a different keyboard? I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini and it's no problem installing SwiftKey and changing the theme (in the settings menu of SwiftKey) to a dark theme. Their "Pumpkin" theme includes orange fonts and black keys.

        • Jerry
          November 20, 2015 at 4:47 pm

          Really? I didn't know that. All my Android phone has always been rooted. Just my Note Edge that I kept it stock and not root. I know a custom ROM have a theme have a Dark theme that make everything black, even the type box. I'll give SwiftKey a try. Eventually, I'm going to root my Note Edge anyway. I can't stand stock ROM and useless app that I can't remove and waste valuable space.

        • Kannon Yamada
          November 23, 2015 at 2:44 pm

          Samsung stock is really awful. It's bizarre how they add so many customizations that it causes the phone to become laggy. Great hardware and bizarre firmware.

          In case you're interested, there's alternatives to SwiftKey, like Swipe. And the version after Marshmallow will include a custom dark theme, supposedly, as an option.

        • ldAbl
          January 12, 2016 at 4:58 am

          Google keyboard. Go into the settings of the app, and change the appearance to holo white.

      • Cameron
        November 19, 2015 at 8:11 pm

        Fleksy allows you to make a custom theme for a keyboard.

  30. Anonymous
    September 21, 2015 at 8:02 pm

    Do you think if I use the Galaxy Tab S 10.5 primary for reading books, that it could cause any burn in? What would you suggest to prevent the burn in when reading a book?

    • Kannon Yamada
      September 21, 2015 at 9:39 pm

      Use apps that remove the action bar and the status bar. All AMOLED screens degrade over time, so you're getting burn-in no matter what you do. Over time it will accumulate. However, there are people with 5-6 year old OLED screens with very little burn in.

  31. mina
    May 7, 2015 at 6:04 am

    My new nokia Lumia 930 shows a slight ref flashing under black backgrounds this normal or something wrong in my phone?

  32. Andrew
    April 24, 2015 at 1:33 am

    This stinks for me. For some reason, when I plug my phone in overnight, the next morning the screen is always on. I'm not sure why. Over a year old with no sign of burn-in though. And that's despite having my brightness all the way up and my screen on a LOT every day.

    • Kannon Y
      April 29, 2015 at 6:27 pm

      You can disable screen-on while charging. Some phones support this natively. Others require some kind of app to do this. I would check in your settings menu under display first and then check the Play Store.

    • Anonymous
      July 20, 2015 at 1:25 am

      Probably, you might have turned that option in Developer Mode. You should look into it to make your screen remain off during charging.

      • Kannon Yamada
        July 20, 2015 at 1:32 am

        Thanks Pravin!

        • Anonymous
          July 20, 2015 at 11:26 am

          Kannon, Don't mention it.
          I have a request.. You have covered about AMOLED screen burn-in issue.. Could you also cover the lifespan/hours of AMOLED/SAMOLED/SAMOLED+/HDAMOLED, etc.., and RGB Pixel Matrices?? This article surely has created awareness as well as little panic. It would be very help for the people who know only first half of the story. After knowing about the burn-in issue, they would be scared to use their phones, paranoid actually.. That would give them some sense of relief.. :D

          Thank you


      • Anonymous
        July 20, 2015 at 1:11 pm

        I have since fixed the problem. Simple as rooting the device and running a custom ROM. Thanks for all the feedback.

  33. Anand
    April 24, 2015 at 12:26 am

    Samsung galaxy series now uses what they call Super AMOLED display. Curious to know if the above mentioned issues, and their solutions, are applicable for Super AMOLED too.

    • Kannon Y
      April 24, 2015 at 12:59 am

      My understanding is that SAMOLED screens only differ in their implementation of a touchscreen. They still rely on OLEDs, which suffer from the problem with burn-in.

    • Ryan Bamford
      May 2, 2015 at 5:45 am

      They absolutely suffer from this problem. I have the Galaxy Note Edge (which supposedly has the best display along with the Note 4 of any phone currently) and I have a few spots of noticable burn in. To be fair, this isn't so much the fault of the phone as it was my previous addiction to an idling game called Tap Titans lol. Now I have 3 circles burned in near the top of my screen, and the navigation bar is getting burned in too. I tried to combat the 3 circles by inverting my colors and playing in one handed mode so that the entire burned in portion would be white, but that was actually a bad idea as described in this article.

      All in all, I clocked in 244 hours in that game over the span of a month and a half (like I said, idle game so doesn't really require attention) and a majority of my time spent playing was on the charger which caused my device to get hot as hell when coupled with the hours of running a somewhat intensive game.

      So sad. Oh well, if it ever gets too bad to deal with I can attempt to warranty it or just buy a replacement LCD.

  34. Dels
    April 21, 2015 at 1:48 am

    Install custom rom if available and choose theme that provide deep black as background on almost stock google app

    • Kannon Y
      April 21, 2015 at 1:52 am

      Great tip! Thanks for the comment!

    • Eva
      April 25, 2015 at 9:16 pm

      I have set a deep black theme throughout my Galaxy Note 3, from my wallpapers to my text app (textra) to all my book reading apps. Basically, everything I can set to black for reading, is changed. It's not only easy on the battery, but also on my eyes, and I think it's really elegant.

      I only wish my Google browser & email apps had a black theme setting.

      • Conundrum
        March 7, 2017 at 6:40 am

        Hi, the guy (Huang something) who made a lot of the e-ink mods found a way to reverse in software screen burn on VFD displays often found cheaply surplus.

        The catch here is that to do this needs a good picture of the screen affected.
        I did find a way to do this, harvest the R/B filter from a pair of 3D glasses sold with one specific film (IIRC Journey to the Center of the Earth) and put that in front of the camera lens with the blue screen mode on. Use graphics editor like Irfanview and make a reversed brightness copy of it, then leave that on the screen for a while to even out the burn-in.
        It won't fix the problem but might reduce its effect.

        • Conundrum
          October 2, 2017 at 6:26 pm

          I used the *#0*# trick, also put it in negative mode to get yellow instead of RGB.
          This works on most Android phones and seems quite effective.