Blog Post

Hurry up and put a projector in my phone, Intel

For several years now, Intel (s intc) has used its annual [email protected] event to showcase an interactive projected display. The idea is that any surface can be turned into a space to flip through photos, watch videos and even compose documents. At today’s event in San Francisco, people crowded around a table to doodle and type messages with their fingers on a projected screen.

It’s easy to see why the technology has wide appeal. Most people have made the leap from a physical keyboard to a touchscreen on their phone or tablet, and it doesn’t feel very different to type on a tabletop as opposed to a screen made of Gorilla Glass. It may even be easier, since a user can adjust a projected screen to be as small or large as they wish.

An Intel expert raised a brilliant application: mobile phones. As the need and desire to interact with data while mobile has grown, a range of screen sizes have emerged for different types of personal use. We work on laptops with large screens and read on medium-sized iPads. But most of the time, we rely solely on a tiny phone screen to read our email, catch up on the news or share moments with friends.

What if that phone could have any size screen? That’s the promise of an embedded projector. Suddenly, your Mailbox app becomes iPad-sized, laptop-sized, even wall-sized. If you get caught on a surprise deadline with just your cellphone, you don’t have to tap away on its tiny keypad. And you wouldn’t need extra accessories or a particularly smooth surface: You could even wear gloves.

The projector demonstrated by Intel Tuesday is obviously still a prototype. It lagged at times, and at one point I was sent away for a few moments so Intel employees could reboot the system after it froze. The projector and camera that make the touch sensitivity possible will need to shrunk to a size that can fit comfortably inside a phone. But it was the only project at [email protected] where people jumped in to test it already knowing what to do.

We are ready, Intel. Hopefully you are too, soon.

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12 Responses to “Hurry up and put a projector in my phone, Intel”

  1. Galaxy Beam is awesome. The guy whi mentioned the iPhone sleeve in the comments misses the point. It may be a novelty for some, but I have been using my Galaxy Beam a lot. I have projected movies, photos, and presentations on my wall. I have a small room and there is no space for a tv. I have been watching the BBC’s exellent coverage of Wimbledon on the BBC Sport website here in the UK. I have a much newer Sony Xperia phone with Jelly Bean and I haven’t touched it since I got this. I don’t think this projector thing is a gimmick. Phones have multimedia features but honestly, watching movies on a tiny screen sucks. Granted, it has to be pretty dark to get the most out of the Beam’s projector but I can easily get an 80 inch screen and the picture still looks pretty cool. You get two batteries too. Only sad thing is that Samsung are not making a newer model with Jelly Bean on it.

  2. Wake up dude ! Samsung Beam is doing that since years ! How can you miss it ! It is even on every serious forum as it just get the latest android ! Maybe it is a sponsored post or a “there is only apple, apple is my world, there is nothing else” post ?

  3. Larry Levine

    I don’t get it. I’ve got one of those projector sleeves for my iphone 4s. Once the novelty wore off I stopped using it. Sure, I could project presentations or movies and stuff but my phone would ring, notifications would go off..

    I suppose I could have turned on airplane mode but that defeats the point of having the phone. Better to use a tablet connected to a projector or something directly or using appletv IMHO.

  4. realjjj

    Is this a sponsored post or something?
    Samsung Galaxy Beam has been around for a while,doesn’t have touch but that’s not the problem.(and it’s not the only mobile device with a projector)
    Intel doesn’t make the projector or the touch.You got pico projectors from guys like Microvision (laser) , TI (DLP) or Omnivision (LCoS) and the gesture/touch part from many others.
    But the projectors are pretty low brightness and rather power hungry so it’s difficult to provide a decent image in a slim enough package.
    The opportunity has been there for years but the window is closing as flexible screens are getting closer.
    Intel has also been showing that kitchen projector with touch for some years now,not sure what this new demo is since the video here doesn’t work but i assume it’s a variation on the same theme.

  5. Fabulous. Wouldn’t throw away my Galaxy Note, though. I may still need privacy at times and not project everything in public places for evetyone to see.