Every once in a while, a tech company tries to get clever and stuffs a projector into something.
It's called Flicks, and while it isn't the first projector-boombox combo, it's rare in that it actually seems designed for the Internet age. There's no DVD player or composite inputs like you find on some existing products, but it lets you plug in your phone or tablet via HDMI, or connect streaming devices like Chromecast, Roku Streaming Stick or Amazon Fire TV Stick. (A USB port will let users charge these devices without a nearby outlet.)
Flicks is also promising pretty good projector quality, with 1280-by-800 resolution and 700 LED brightness. At 8 feet from a wall, the box can supposedly project an image that's a whopping 100 inches diagonal.
On the audio side, Flicks will have a built-in subwoofer, a line in jack, and headphone output. It supports Bluetooth so users can listen to music from their phones or tablets, and conduct audio or video calls though its built-in microphone.
The boombox won't come cheap, however. The basic Flicks Solo model costs $499 and offers four hours of movie playback on a charge. The Flicks Range will cost $579 (with a $50 early bird discount) and doubles the battery life. Dashbon, the makers of Flicks, expect to ship in June--assuming it meets its crowdfunding goal, of course.
Why this matters: Although projector phones and tablets are cool in theory, they bring compromises in thickness, weight, and battery life, which you probably don't want in a device you're always carrying with you. The boombox seems like a more natural fit, since you might already by bringing one with you to parties, picnics and camping trips. It's an idea that seems ripe for a modern overhaul, so hopefully Flicks can pull it off.