Samsung Galaxy Beam Android phone (preview)
Samsung Galaxy Beam preview: An Android phone with a built-in pico projector
- Built-in pico projector
- 12.5mm thick
- Good looking design
- Brightness only 15 lumens
- Average specifications
- A little expensive given specs
The Samsung Galaxy Beam is definitely one of the more interesting releases of 2012 so far. It's essentially an average, mid-range Android phone that boasts a built-in HD projector as its key feature. With a brightness of just 15 lumens, however, we can't possibly see this feature being used for any serious entertainment or business.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
We're not exactly sure why anyone would be interested in a smartphone with a built-in projector but that's exactly what Samsung has created. The Galaxy Beam is a run of the mill Android phone that boasts a built-in HD projector as its key feature, but with a brightness of just 15 lumens, we can't see this feature being used for any serious entertainment or business.
On first glance the Samsung Galaxy Beam appears to look like just another Android phone. Look on top though and you'll find a projector lens that allows the phone to beam content onto surfaces up to 50in wide. The projector itself has a resolution of 640x360 but a brightness of just 15 lumens.
Samsung will tell you that this is brighter than many dedicated, portable pico projectors, but this simply isn't true. A good example is BenQ's latest Joybee GP2 portable projector. It has a brightness of 200 lumens yet in our review we found that its lack of brightness means you need to use it at full brightness unless you're in a dim or dark environment. As such, we can't imagine the Galaxy Beam being very useful at all.
Samsung says the Galaxy Beam will come with a "projector-dedicated application" that will enable projection of specific content, so the phone won't simply just project whatever is on the screen. Photos, videos, games, maps and "business information" has been identified by Samsung as the specific content that can be beamed from the phone. The company says the 2000mAh battery powering the Galaxy Beam will enable up to three hours of projection time.
Samsung deserves a lot of credit for its implementation of the projector on the Galaxy Beam. The phone is just 12.5mm thick and the company is therefore calling it the world's thinnest projector phone. Though 12.5mm is thicker than many other smartphones on the market, the Galaxy Beam is certainly not as bulky as we imagined a projector phone to be. Further, the phone manages to look as inconspicuous as possible. Aside from the slight bump on the back, you'd be hard pressed to immediately notice the Galaxy Beam has a built-in projector.
Once you get past the projector feature, however, the Galaxy Beam's specifications are not overly impressive. It has a reasonably large 4in, super AMOLED display with a standard resolution of 800x480, while a 1GHz dual-core processor, 768MB of RAM and 8GB are serviceable, but don't compete with most flagship phones of 2012. Other features include a 5-megapixel rear camera, a front-facing 1.3-megapixel camera plus a microSD card slot for extra storage.
Disappointingly, the Galaxy Beam will initially ship with the now outdated Android 2.3 Gingerbread operating system. Samsung hasn't advised whether it will update the phone to the latest 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android but considering this is a niche device, we wouldn't be surprised if the answer was no.
The Samsung Galaxy Beam is available now in Australia for $599 outright, but it will not be sold on a subsidised contract plan through Australian telcos like Telstra, Optus or Vodafone. The lack of telco support suggests the Galaxy Beam is a rather niche product that isn't likely to sell in huge numbers.
Join the newsletter!
Why virtualise your NAS environment?
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo A73 review: The budget smartphone that sets the bar for 2018
- 2 Oppo R11s review: The iClone you know and love, but not quite the one you deserve
- 3 Blackberry KEYone Black Edition review: What the original KEYone should have been
- 4 Zolo Liberty+ review: The true wireless earbuds you've been waiting for
- 5 Samsung Gear IconX 2018 review: The path of least resistance makes for an easy upgrade
Latest News Articles
- HP Omen laptops include a first: Nvidia Max-Q graphics technology
- HP reboots Omen desktop with more of what gamers love
- HP's Omen Accelerator can give your laptop some guts
- HP's Omen X Compact Desktop can morph into a backpack VR PC
- Samsung to detail new Tizen OS for smart home appliances, IoT devices
PCW Evaluation Team
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
- Interview - Netgear CEO Patrick Lo talks eSports, the NBN and why mesh is the smartphone of home Wi-Fi
- Everything You Can Do, I Can Do Better: Comparing The Google Home’s Assistant To Amazon Echo’s Alexa
- Samsung Galaxy S9+ review: A predictably-exellent flagship uplifted by a standout camera
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- FTApplication Support ManagerOther
- CCIntegration Developer - Port MacquarieQLD
- CCSenior Node.js DeveloperQLD
- FTRates and billings ERP ConsultantQLD
- CCChange Manager l Port Macquarie NSWNSW
- FTNetwork Infrastructure Development EngineerNSW
- FTData EngineerOther
- FTBusiness Analyst - End User ComputingOther
- CCSharepoint DeveloperVIC
- FTData AnalystOther
- FTSAP Test AnalystsACT
- FTSenior Test Analyst - Multiple rolesOther
- FTBig Data ArchitectOther
- FTAssociate - Case ManagementOther
- FTDesktop Engineer Level 1 - 2Other
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTData Insights Consultant - CBD work locationOther
- CCHadoop DeveloperVIC
- CCSenior Solution Architect - Brisbane locationNSW
- TPTechnical Project Manager (HRIS)WA
- TPProject Manager - SEQQLD
- CCX2 BPE Managers - TelcoVIC
- CCSystem Infrastructure EngineerNSW
- FTForeperson / Field Supervisor - ConstructionVIC
- FTSalesforce DeveloperOther