I was curious today what screen resolutions people are using these days. Google Analytics reports the screen resolutions of your visitors but doesn’t give it to you in a way that is useful. It lists each unique screen resolution e.g. 1152×864 and how many visitors came with that resolution. But what you want to know is, how many people have a horizontal resolution of 1152 or more? That calls for a cumulative histogram.
Here are histograms for horizontal and vertical resolutions based on visitors to my site GovTrack.us over the last month. The horizontal resolutions show that around 95% of visitors support at least 1024 pixels, but it drops off to only around 70% of visitors supporting a greater horizontal resolution. The 70% hangs out till about 1280 pixels (meaning, should we be designing for 1280 pixels now and make things harder for just the remaining 30%?). Then it drops again to a mere 35% for anything greater than 1280. And as for the standard wide-screen resolution of 1680, it’s just around 15%.
For reference, the iPad’s resolution (in its most popular orientation) is 768×1024.
With 1024 pixels horizontally still the resolution most widely supported, it’s not surprising that 780 pixels vertically is the point of a big drop off too, from around 95% down to less than 50% supporting anything greater. While 70% of visitors support 1280 pixels horizontally, only around 30% support its 4:3-corresponding vertical resolution of 1024 (probably as more people are using widescreens).