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Friday, July 27, 2012

It’s Smart – Beam It!


By Udit Chaudhuri


As a tech enthusiast and marketer, one often has to tackle a moot question: ‘Is this product a be-all for one or all-things-for-everyone?’ If the former, it means the product does a lot in a well-researched niche. If the latter, it’s a flop. Or, back to basics as in our Painware story. While the Beam in Samsung’s Galaxy seems to focus on a certain type of customer and need, does it face the hazards of line extension?

With the advent of high-performance opto-electronics, a number of cell-phones offered the projection features a couple of years ago. Certainly those made sense to see a larger image and at a comfortable distance, better than banging heads over a tiny screen with friends sharing a slide or video. Though a great time-killer, the concept proved impractical even for a small meeting, quizzing - where is the surface to project? Besides, the intensity was poor at 6 or 9 lumens at best, needing total darkness for clarity.

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Consequently, increasing screen resolutions, larger panel sizes of Dell, iPad and Samsung tablets gave sharper, brighter and larger images that made it practical to watch or share a video over a length of time. New-generation Smartphones stand square here. The bevy of ports lets them all receive a variety of inputs, even HD movies, but projection is mostly via a PC; Bluetooth in few models. After all, a tablet or Smartphone is meant to be a personal communicator, entertainer and quick-work station. However, presentation is increasingly becoming a need for the smart worker on the move and a projector is still a burden to carry or an obligation to seek.

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The Samsung Galaxy Beam, a huge improvement from its predecessor in the Samsung Beam launched in 2010, now features a 15 lumen display, dual-core processing at 1 GHz, 8 GB of built-in storage, and 768 MB of RAM. It runs on the Android 2.3 Gingerbread operating system and is powered by a 2000 mAh of storage battery. Those lumens would also mean a high lux level and perhaps in total darkness, the Galaxy Beam will be able to project an HD video to a width of 50 inches (as large as a wide-screen TV) at its proportionate distance. 

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Photography: courtesy World Wide Web

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