Soon you'll be able to turn your cell phone or iPod into a projector and share the latest YouTube sensation with friends on a big screen. The technology to do that is available now and it was developed at 3M's Greater Cincinnati research facility. The designers and engineers at 3M's Clermont County site were the first to market with the product, called a mobile projection engine. Roughly the size of a wireless earpiece and less than half an inch thick, it's meant to be used by makers of cell phones and other personal electronic devices, so those devices can project a 40-inch -- or larger -- image on a wall or any other surface.
Possible uses? Maybe a portable PowerPoint presentation, sharing hand-held video from a sports event in the pub afterward or instant video of the graduation to show friends and relatives. 3M says it is partnering with consumer electronics companies that plan to launch products using the projector this year. With so much digital media now accessible by mobile devices, 3M believes products that use its optics technology will be taken up by consumers. The tiny projector "achieves the size, efficiency, image quality and affordability needed for consumer adoption of this promising new product category," says Mike Kelly, a 3M executive VP.
Writer: David Holthaus
Source: Katherine Hagmeier, 3M