Galaxy Watch with a built-in projector appears in new Samsung patent

New QWERTY keyboard from One UI Watch 4.5 on the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro
(Image credit: Michael Hicks / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Samsung has filed a patent for a smartwatch with a built-in projector.
  • The projector would be used to display information from the main display on the user's hand.
  • It's unclear if or when this technology would be implemented in a future Galaxy Watch.

Samsung makes some of the best Android smartwatches on the market, stuffing them with plenty of health sensors and features. However, the company may be looking to take things up a notch if the latest patent is anything to go by.

A recently published patent was spotted by Wareable, showing a wearable device that would be able to project images onto your hand. The smartwatch would use a series of micro-lenses and LEDs mounted at an angle on the side of the device to project a larger view of the smartwatch display.

Patent showing a smartwatch with a projector

(Image credit: USPTO)

The patent explains that characteristics of wearables like smartwatches restrict the display size to 2 inches or less, putting a limit on the amount of information they can display. The built-in projector is meant to overcome this challenge and could allow users to view content from their smartwatches better while keeping the device small and lightweight.

This could even open up new or improved use cases for watches, such as viewing images or even videos.

According to the patent, the controller would be able to tilt the projection so that the image would not appear distorted even if the user's hand is held at an angle from the wrist.

This is not the first time Samsung has patented a smartphone with a projector, as Wareable points out. An older patent detailed a smartwatch that could project a keyboard that could detect gestures so that users could interact with it from their wrists. This could address a major pain point for some, given how small smartwatch keyboards are.

However, while patents are always interesting and give us a glimpse of what companies may be researching, they don't always lead to tangible products. Thus, we've yet to see Samsung launch a smartwatch with this tech (I can only imagine the hit to battery life), and we may never see a projector of any sort on a Galaxy Watch. Still, it would be cool if Samsung could make it a reality, if not on the Galaxy Watch 6, then on some future model.

Derrek Lee
News Editor

Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.