The age of pico projectors has officially arrived with their huge presence at CES, and the first projector phone, the LG Expo, going on sale within the US. There was even a pico projector film festival in January, where motion pictures have been screened on ice sculptures and naked backs. Pico projectors are both hand-held projectors, or projectors embedded in small electronic units comparable to cell phones. They try and address one of many biggest problems in electronics, which is that smaller is healthier…aside from screens. The stress between what our handheld units are capable of doing versus what they are capable of showing by means of their interfaces grows stronger every year. Whether or not pico projectors are the answer to that downside remains to be seen.
LG is first out of the gate with a pico projector that attaches to their new LG Expo. The attachment retails for $179 and projects a 480 x 320 image up to 9 toes away. Opinions thus far say that the image, which maxes out at 66 inches, seems good. This is barely the beginning of course. While the LG projector is a clip-on accent, future variations will match into the phone’s type factor.
Utilizing your phone to project a movie onto the wall actually has a “gee whiz” factor to it, like in the new LG industrial the place an office employee is seen projecting Avatar on the wall of the break room. However before all of us throw away our huge screens, pico projectors have some problems to overcome.
One massive subject is sound. If one of the advantages of a pico projector is that you should use a small kind factor to share video with a big group of individuals, getting large sound out is no easier. Battery life is one other potential issue. LG doesn’t give a rated battery life in the product specs page, they usually appear to have embargoed that info as it doesn’t appear in any of the opinions so far. Bottom line: it’s unclear how far you’d get right into a movie (not to mention Avatar) earlier than your phone died.
Pico projectors are additionally in a bit of a foot race as all of our present screens get tied in to the grid. As an example, if you had been at a party and wanted to share a funny video you took together with your phone, right now it is likely to be easier to show it with a pico projector. However, with net-enabled televisions and media center PCs, soon (if not already) you may be able to simply send video to any close by screen.
And the places without personal screens where you may wish to watch something, like airplanes and subways, are often not sensible places to project images, notably you probably have any qualms about pressure feeding your media preferences onto others.
Certainly, the very ease with which pico projectors can be used to create social awkwardness could be a major feature. Alexander Besher, one of many organizers of the pico projector film pageant, thinks there could be vital use of pico projectors in political professionaltests. Picture a nighttime war professionaltest the place hundreds of people have pico projectors showing graphic images of devastation on every available surface.
However, essentially the most thrilling use of pico projectors may not be doing the things, like projecting films, that we associate with traditional projectors. Instead, pico projectors may very well be used for augmented reality functions- projecting the digital world onto the physical one.
To see essentially the most wonderful potential applications using this know-how, MIT’s “SixthSense” project is the place to look. We’ve reported on SixthSense earlier than, but here is a recent video with even more amazing options, including some iPad-like capabilities achieved using solely a pico projector and a sheet of paper.