Apple Reveals Plans to Incorporate Projectors in Future iDevices

By , Aug 11, 2011

Apple recently caused a commotion in the tech world (I know, shocking) by registering ApplePico.com. MacRumors pointed out the Cupertino company on the domain’s WHOIS listing earlier this month, which naturally raised some eyebrows.

Needless to say, speculation that Apple is working on pico projectors has started to heat up again. Previous patent applications from the iPhone-makers have pointed to projector research, but none of them have been more revealing than this one…

PatentlyApple uncovered a US Patent & Trademark filing from Steve Jobs’ team that details the company’s plans to integrate pico-like projectors into future iOS devices. If you aren’t familiar with the term, a pico projector is a tiny lens that can project media content onto a large surface.

The patent explains that consumers store tons of media on their devices. But because these products struggle to maintain portability, their screen sizes are typically too small for them to adequately share the content with other people.

Apple’s solution is to install tiny projectors into their products that will allow users to share video and images on a large, flat surface. Although this has been attempted in the past, Apple has come up with a potential game-changer: Shared Project Workspace.

This allows multiple pico projectors to interact with each other for different purposes. Users can drag content from one projected workspace to another, or sync the projected images together to create a unified display. You can even control the system with swipes and gestures.

Patents don’t always make it to consumer products, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we eventually saw these tiny projectors turn up in iDevices. Imagine playing a game projected onto a 40″ surface, using your iPhone as a controller, or combining iPhones with a friend to watch a movie in widescreen.

What do you think? Would this be a killer feature, or a certain flop?

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  • http://facebook.com/askeric Eric

    I can visualize the potential – especially for portable business presentations.

    How great it would be to have your entire sales presentation in you iPhone – walk in to a client’s office, and using a blank wall surface, you’re into a presentation within seconds!

    Very cool! :-)

    - Eric

  • http://www.YouTube.com/use/MRTWIT21 Twited21

    This tech is already available in the form of a digital video camera with a tiny led projector in the back of the external screen

    If apple did this there would be an eruption of uber smart phones :-) as true media devices
    Bring it on :-)

  • Karasu

    Samsung already did it last year…but just because it’s APPLE that’s doin’ it, we’re all supposed to have puppy eyes and gaze with amazement..or..OR if they’re planning to patent that too….either way just play along people….*wwoaaaaaaaaaaa*

    • Max

      Apples work is quality, Samsungs work the most of the time isn’t.

      • Karasu

        yeah…That’s why the Galaxy SII is Rocking the World…(-_-) and that’s also why Android is the most selling Operating System in the World….
        Apple’s work is overly expensive & most of the time outdated…the best example would have to be the lack of Camera in the first iPad…or the 5Mpx camera in a world of 8 & 12 Mpx CameraPhones..
        Please revise your Informations..

    • javierE186

      Answer this then, how did that turn out for Samsung???? Clearly it turned out so well that millions of people are buying that phone. /s Let’s just see how Apple will make it work, remember it’s not about who does it first, rather who actually makes it work.

      • Jon Garrett

        actually it is about who makes it first because god knows that anytime a company releases a product, apple fan boys will claim that they’re copying the idea from apple.

    • Jon Garrett

      Saw this at Google IO 2011 Ice Cream Sandwich devices could have this feature by this time next year. I just hope they patent it because we all know that apple will and claim that its their IP.

  • Saleh

    i hope this comes in iphone 6 so i can force eveyone to watch 2 girls 1 cup everywhere i go :D

  • Bomber

    Or the possibilities for teachers

  • The Wizard’s Baker

    Imagine playing a game being projected on a wall and as you tap the screen The image moves everywhere.

    • Selcuk

      +1

    • Jon Garrett

      yeah, imagine that. we saw it already at Google IO 2011.

  • http://websiteNotRequired.com nameRequired

    Apple Reveals Plans to Incorporate Projectors in Future iDevices, huuuumm… i dont get the tittle. but i find interesting the discovery of that pattent. i hope they come soon, i also suspect that thats not an iDevice but a macbook touch or someting similar

  • Joeyjojo

    If they do this I hope they sort out a decent battery for the devices.

  • GUARDDOGG

    Apple products just work & work better. Just look at the sales. Android operating system is on many devices on all carriers & Apples IOS is on basically one phone on two US carriers. Android is a great alternative to an iPhone, but an iPhone is still clearly a first choice. Android is a OS on a cheaply made hardware device that people settle for or listen to salesmen who are working to double sales by hooking someone into a buy 1 get 1 free Android OS device. When iPhones pop up on Sprint in the US you will see major drops in Android sales again.

  • GUARDDOGG

    Apple products just work & work better. Just look at the sales. Android OS  is on many devices on all carriers & Apples IOS is on basically one phone on two US carriers. Android is a great alternative to an iPhone, but an iPhone is still clearly a first choice. Android is a OS on a cheaply made hardware device that people settle for. When iPhones pop up on Sprint in the US you will see major drops in Android sales again.