How would your life be different if you could carry around a magical device that fit in your pocket, but expanded instantly into a 24-inch computer display whenever you needed it? You could connect your phone, tablet, or laptop to it, to watch movies, play games, or even get real work done.
If you said, "Not at all, that sounds dumb," then keep on walking. But if the idea of projecting your phone's screen on a display that's, say, 20 times larger, anytime you like, is appealing, we've got the Kickstarter for you.
SPUD is the Spontaneous Pop-Up Display, and it is a tiny pico projector that shoots 1280x720 video onto a collapsible screen. The whole contraption is extremely light (it weighs under two pounds) and assembles in less than 10 seconds using a maneuver that's akin to opening an umbrella. Indeed, SPUD sort of looks like an umbrella, or perhaps a tent you'd take on a camping trip thanks to the screen material. It opens rapidly and then collapses and folds up almost as quickly.
It attaches to any laptop, desktop, or mobile device with a standard HDMI cable (you might need to get an HDMI cable for your iPhone, for example, to make this work). The projector has a four-hour battery for mobile operations.
The campaign contends that the display is sharp and bright (though that's hard to assess without testing a real product sample). And it has definite advantages over an ordinary pico projector: you don't need to find a dark space or a white wall to project onto, for starters. And the display is consistently sharp and bright, since it won't vary depending upon how far away the projector is from a wall or other flat surface.
This is a very cool looking product, and one we'd really like to have. Beware, though, it's not cheap, priced at almost $400 on Kickstarter with plans to sell at retail for $500. For some people, this could be amazing. If you do decide to take the plunge, you will have to wait at least until June 2017 for delivery.
Pledges start at: $389
Campaign ends: 12/15/2016