The Apple iPad has a 1024 x 768 pixel display, while up until recently iPhones and iPods touch had 480 x 320 pixel displays. That meant that users had two options when they wanted to run iPhone apps on an iPad: View the app in a small box in the center, or use the iPad’s pixel-doubling feature to blow up the apps to full screen size. Unfortunately some apps look kind of awful when you blow them up to full screen.

Fortunately many developers have published iPad-specific versions of their apps over the past year, so iPad users don’t run into this problem as often as they used to. But if you have a couple of iPhone apps that you’re still using on your iPad, and you don’t mind jailbreaking your device, it turns out there’s pixel-doubling isn’t the only option for embiggening iPhone apps for an iPad display.

A $3 app called RetinaPad is available from the Cydia store for jailbroken iOS devices. RetinaPad checks to see if the iPhone app you’re trying to run is available with Retina Display graphics. You see, the iPhone 4 and latest iPod touch models have high resolution 960 x 640 pixel displays. So instead of artificially doubling pixels, RetinPad convinces your iPad to just use the Retina graphics already built into many iPhone apps.

Sure, 960 x 640 isn’t exactly the same as 1024 x 768. But it’s a lot closer than 480 x 320.

You can find more information about RetinaPad at Lifehacker and Download Squad.

Brad Linder

Brad Linder is editor of Liliputing and Mobiputing. He's been tinkering with mobile tech for decades and writing about it since...

One reply on “RetinaPad makes iPhone apps look better on jailbroken iPads”

  1. Wow… it took a third party to come up with this and they’re charging? I’m astonished that this didn’t already seamlessly happen.

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