The smartphone that doubles as a pocket projector
Samsung's new Galaxy Beam can project a streaming movie or photo slideshow onto a wall with images 50 inches across.
Here, a guide to Samsung's new "pocket projector":
What sort of specs does the phone boast?
The otherwise-ordinary Galaxy Beam comes equipped with "one special thing," says Sascha Segan at PC Mag: "A Cyclopean eye up top that beams a 15-lumen image out the front onto whatever surface you can find." The manufacturer says the projector can be used continuously for three hours on a single charge. Despite the extra hardware, the phone's size is pretty standard: 12.5mm thick, compared to the iPhone 4S's 9.31mm. The Galaxy Beam still slips easily into your pocket.
How does the display look?
Samsung claims "crisp, high-definition images" up to 50 inches across, but it depends on the lighting conditions in the room. During a live demonstration in a dark room, the video looked "sharp," says Segan, and while the brightness "didn't stun," projections still looked clear. But "it doesn't work at all in a bright room," says Chris Ziegler at The Verge, "though you could pass it off for a quick slideshow among friends if you dim the lights."
Besides the projector, is the phone any good?
The Galaxy Beam leaves a lot to be desired, says Ziegler. For instance, Samsung was so intent on slashing costs to accommodate its projector that it built the Galaxy Beam to run on Android 2.3, a relatively ancient version of Google's (GOOG) mobile operating system. Most new Android phones run version 4.0.
Is this the first time a projector phone has hit the market?
No. Samsung unveiled a model called the Show in 2009, but it was only available in Korea. Rival manufacturer LG (LGEAF) brought out a projector phone called the Expo in 2009, which "hit the U.S. market with a stunning thud," says Segan. However, the Expo was targeting PowerPoint-savvy business people. The Galaxy Beam is different; not only is it much smaller than its bulky predecessors, it's being marketed to a wider audience as a "fun" gadget. There's no word yet on pricing, but expect the Galaxy Beam to hit the market in the second quarter of this year.
More from The Week:
- Are Microsoft and Apple teaming up to destroy Android?
- Should HP resurrect the TouchPad?
- Should RIM stop making BlackBerrys?
MORE ON MSN MONEY
Copyright © 2013 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Quotes are real-time for NASDAQ, NYSE and AMEX. See delay times for other exchanges.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Thomson Reuters (click for restrictions). Real-time quotes provided by BATS Exchange. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Interactive Data Real-Time Services. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by SIX Financial Information.
Try as the bears might, they couldn't break U.S. stocks. But investors still face frothy prices and considerable headwinds.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.
Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.
Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.