The age of pico projectors has officially arrived with their large presence at CES, and the primary projector phone, the LG Expo, happening sale in the US. There was even a pico projector film festival in January, the place movies have been screened on ice sculptures and bare backs. Pico projectors are both hand-held projectors, or projectors embedded in small electronic units reminiscent of cell phones. They try to address one of the biggest problems in electronics, which is that smaller is best…except for screens. The tension between what our handheld gadgets are capable of doing versus what they are capable of showing by their interfaces grows stronger each year. Whether pico projectors are the reply to that problem stays 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. Reviews to date say that the image, which maxes out at sixty six inches, appears to be like good. This is only the start of course. While the LG projector is a clip-on accent, future versions will match into the phone’s type factor.
Utilizing your phone to project a film onto the wall definitely has a “gee whiz” factor to it, like within the new LG industrial where an office worker is seen projecting Avatar on the wall of the break room. However before all of us throw away our big screens, pico projectors have some issues to overcome.
One huge issue is sound. If one of the benefits of a pico projector is that you can use a small form factor to share video with a big group of people, getting large sound out is no easier. Battery life is one other potential issue. LG doesn’t give a rated battery life within the product specs web page, and they seem to have embargoed that data because it doesn’t seem in any of the reviews so far. Bottom line: it’s unclear how far you’d get into a movie (let alone Avatar) before your phone died.
Pico projectors are additionally in a little bit of a foot race as all of our current screens get tied in to the grid. As an illustration, for those who have been at a party and needed to share a funny video you took along with your phone, right now it could be easier to show it with a pico projector. Nevertheless, with web-enabled televisions and media middle PCs, quickly (if not already) you will be able to easily send video to any close by screen.
And the places without personal screens the place you would possibly wish to watch something, like airplanes and subways, are often not practical places to project images, notably when you have any qualms about drive feeding your media preferences onto others.
Certainly, the very ease with which pico projectors can be used to create social awkwardness might be a significant feature. Alexander Besher, one of the organizers of the pico projector film competition, thinks there could be significant use of pico projectors in political protests. Picture a nighttime war professionaltest the place hundreds of individuals have pico projectors showing graphic images of devastation on each available surface.
Nevertheless, probably the most exciting use of pico projectors may not be doing the things, like projecting films, that we associate with traditional projectors. Instead, pico projectors could possibly be used for augmented reality features- projecting the digital world onto the bodily one.
To see the most amazing potential functions using this technology, MIT’s “SixthSense” project is the place to look. We’ve reported on SixthSense before, however here is a current video with even more superb features, including some iPad-like capabilities achieved utilizing solely a pico projector and a sheet of paper.