Half video graphics array (HVGA) is a screen technology common to certain handheld devices. They are generally small screens used in handheld devices, such as smartphones and personal digital assistants (PDA). Some handheld projectors also use this technology. The most common resolution for this type of screen is 480x320 pixels.
This type of technology is used in small screens and comes in a narrow range of sizes. Resolutions common to an HVGA device include 480x320 pixels, 480x360 pixels and 640x240 pixels, with the first being the most common. It's called half-VGA because, at its standard size, it is half the size of the 640x480 pixel screens standard on a VGA setup.
The primary benefit of this type of technology is its extremely compact size, and it's one of the smallest types of screens in common use in personal handheld computing. HVGA is becoming a less common technology for screens on handheld devices as new technologies, and larger handheld screens, take over the market, however.
Not every consumer appreciates the small size of the half-VGA screen. Some consumers find that this type of technology, though compact, is too small for daily use, especially for those who use their devices frequently. Many users are turning to their handheld devices to play games and movies, so a larger screen is becoming popular among heavy handheld computer users.
Pixel counts are used to describe the resolution in digital images. The word pixel, also called pel, is short for picture element, and it is one of the multitude of pieces from which a digital image is created. It is somewhat similar to the dots seen in print photographs. The higher the pixel count, the more detailed the picture information in a digital image is likely to be. Its low resolution makes this type of technology a less suitable choice for handheld projectors used to project images on large surfaces.
Resolution refers to the number of those pixels on a screen or within an image. Though an image with a certain number of pixels can be digitally enlarged to a greater size, the image will still have the same number of pixels, so the image will seem lower quality on a smaller screen. Videos recorded for an HVGA size will look low-quality when enlarged on a large monitor or television screen.