Technically HD is 720p, Full HD is 1080p. Leave it to the marketing types to confuse the issue. Just like USB 2.0 is marketed as hi-speed USB or something like that, and the older 1.1 is full speed USB.
So 1280x720 is HD, and then 1920x1080 is full HD.
And I would say that, if anything, the higher resolution on the new MBPs will SLOW down video rendering. Not that you'll notice because there's an excess of processing power, but the player software has to figure out how to "blow up" the image to fit on the screen. So that's just a little bit of extra work that needs to be done for every frame of the video. Again, not that you'd ever notice this is going on, but it is, and the hardware based video acceleration on the OS X platform is lagging quite a ways behind Windows, so you will be more likely to see it on OS X than Windows.
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