In 2010 an Apple patent application came to light illustrating how a pico-like projector could be integrated into a future MacBook. Now Asus thinks that the timing for such a feature might be right for one of their future notebooks. Their new invention illustrates a couple of new form factors to accommodate an integrated projector. While Asus puts emphasis on professionals using this feature, it would stand to reason that the general public might enjoy such a feature as well. Setting up the notebook on your kitchen table and projecting movie trailers on your wall as if it were a home theater might be a lot of fun. The form factor noted in our cover graphic is actually one that could accommodate a pico projector today before they're miniaturized enough to fit very slim smartphone designs down the road. That's what gives the Asus design an edge – if they ever get it to market quickly enough that is. Time will tell.
Great New Notebook Feature from Asus
The popularity of desktop or portable computers enables users to enjoy the convenience from computers no matter they are at home, work, or outside. Computers not only provides many functions such as processing documents, accessing the Internet, drawing, and audio and video entertainment, but they also could be used with other electronic devices.
In business or the academic field, a notebook is often used in conjunction with a projector for enlarging information on a screen during a presentation, conference or lecture so that attendants could collectively view the slides or graphics of one sort or another.
One of the disadvantages to using an independent projector is that a user has to contend with a lot of cabling between the notebook and projector as well as power supplies.
The solution to this, according to a 2012 Asus patent application, is to simply integrate a projector directly into a future notebook as noted below in the patent figures noted below.
Asus notes that they've integrated anti-skid edges into one of their notebook designs as noted in patent points 112 and 126 above. This is obviously to prevent the notebook from moving or slipping when in a pivoted position as noted in patent FIG. 2. This particular feature could also be limited to the corners of the notebook, Asus notes.
When the notebook is pivoted back, the projector (#130) is then projected on to a screen that is typically associated with slide projectors.
Asus also provides us with an illustration of an alternative notebook form factor with an integrated projector extended and/or folded into the display lid when not in use. The projector may be manually or automatically ejected when required.
According to Asus, the projection module (#130) may be a liquid crystal on silicon (LCOS) projection module or a digital light processing projection module (DLP), which is commonly known as a pico projector.
Although notebook trends are moving toward thin MacBook Air and Ultrabook styled models, there will always be room for more sophisticated models for business users who wouldn't mind sacrificing a little ultra-thinness for features that they could actually use. If you're any kind of professional who has to give presentations to groups between two or twenty people, a notebook with an integrated projector just might fit the bill, perfectly.
Asus filed their patent application in Q1 2011 which was made public by the US Patent and Trademark Office in early 2012.
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