We’ve had our share of rumors and hopes about a mini projector to work with your iPhone or iPod Touch but it seems that something is officially on its way. Engadget reports that Texas Instruments’ DLP Pico Projector will launch on December 1st for sale in Apple Stores in Japan. The miniature projector allows you to display a 60-inch 480×320 video image from up to 8.5 feet away.

David Pogue of the NY Times reviewed the device and seems to love it:

You’d have to be a jaded gizmophile indeed not to be impressed the first time you turn on this tiny, shiny black box. In the center of the short end, there’s a very bright light-emitting-diode lamp. Inside, there’s a miniaturized Texas Instruments digital-light-processing (D.L.P.) chip, similar in principle to the ones that drive some full-size HDTV sets. Together, they produce an astonishingly bright, clear, vivid video or still image. That’s right — from a projector you’ve pulled from your jeans pocket.

The DLP Pico Projector will be priced at about $500 in Japan and there is no word of when this long-awaited device will be available in the US.