Could broken smartphone screens soon be a thing of the past? In principal, mobile devices could already do away with the display – mini projectors cast content directly onto the arm.
This year, French company Cicret wants to launch a wristband that uses the lower arm as a projection surface. The built-in Pico-projector shines the usual smartphone interface straight onto the skin. Eight proximity sensors, which are also built into the wristband, recognize when you press something, thus replacing the touchscreen function. The Ritot Smart Projector Band from San Francisco, which is already available to buy, works in much the same fashion. However, the solution, which is officially marketed as a smartwatch, is limited to a purely text-based display, covering things such as time, calls, email or messages from social networks. Yet neither wristband is able to work without a data connection via smartphone.
In spite of this, the mobile market has high hopes for these alternative display options. The smartwatch under development at Samsung will add to its in-built time display by incorporating the option of projecting an even larger screen display on the arm and even onto a wall. Any uneven surfaces will be extrapolated automatically. The Samsung-patented smartwatch expansion also works with camera sensors in order to recognize finger movements.