Startup called Beam Labs is working on a smart projector that fits in a light socket – Beam. Beam has already surpassed its $200,000 Kickstarter funding goal, and the team hopes to deliver the first units in October, 2015. You can back the campaign with a pledge of $399 or more to try to reserve one.
- SoC – Dual core processor @ 1.3GHz
- System Memory – N/A (1GB?)
- Storage – 8GB storage
- LED pico projector; Currently 854×480 resolution, but it may be upgraded before the product ships
- ANSI 100 lumens
- 20,000 projection hours
- Max projection size – 120″ widescreen
- Throw ratop – 1.6:1 meaning at 1.8m, the project size will be 1.1m.
- Lamp function: 12 LED lights
- Audio – 2W stereo speakers
- Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
- Light socket – E26, E27, or Bayonet via included adapter
- Power Supply – 110VAC to 240VAC
- Dimensions – N/A
The version of Android is the device has not been specified. Beam can be controlled with Android or iOS (iPhone and iPad) devices, or via a Bluetooth keyboard / mouse combo. You can send content to the Beam using Airplay or Miracast. The device includes the Google Play Store, which means you should be able to run most Android apps. When you don’t use Beam as a projector, you can also use it as a standard lamp thanks to its 12 LED lights.
What makes this device unusual is that instead of plugging the Beam into a wall jack, you connect it to a light socket. It draws power through the socket the same way a light bulb would, and works with E27 sockets (or you can use a Bayonet adapter if you’re in a country that uses that standard).
Beam is one of the most unusual Android mini PCs I’ve come across in the past few years… and also one of the most expensive. But it’s not much more expensive than a standalone pico projector, which could make this little Android PC an interesting option for folks that were thinking of picking up a tiny projector anyway.