At MWC 2012, Samsung announced a smartphone with a pico projector embedded in it known as the Galaxy Beam. As a concept it ticked all the boxes, however it had a few major downfalls such as poor battery life, large body, older version of Android and most importantly, the projector ended up being fairly dim, essentially ensuring that the Galaxy Beam never really took off in either the consumer market or the business arena where a projector could be an asset.
Fast forward to 2014 and based on a filing with TENAA China (China’s equivalent to the US based FCC), it appears that Samsung’s working on a successor to the Beam, submitting a phone with the model # SM-G3858 to the agency for certification. The TENAA entry,includes a few pictures of the phone, showing that the smartphone does have a clear bump on the upper middle back of the device opening up to a wide lens on the top, leading the assumption (at this stage) that the phone will include a pico projector onboard.
In order to accommodate the pico projector, Samsung has moved the normally top mounted 3.5mm Headphone jack to the left hand side of the phone above the volume rocker. Another design consideration is the addition of an extra button on the right hand side of the phone which was also included on the original Galaxy Beam, this is located above the power button. Also seen in the photos is the SIM card slot on the left and a microSD card slot on the right.
Based on the photos supplied, the phone looks very much to be a metal finish, but with Samsung’s reticence so far, to move into metal construction on their devices would seem to point more to a plastic shell with a glossy brushed metal effect finish.
Also included in the TENAA database, are specs for the phone which among other things confirms Android on-board, which will make this a Galaxy branded phone. The hardware included is definitely an improvement over the original Galaxy Beam, although the inclusion of Android 4.2 says that Samsung still hasn’t learnt from that particular failing on the original.
SM-G3858 Specs from TENAA Filing:
- 4.66″ WVGA (800×480) display
- Quad-Core 1.2GHz chipset
- 1GB of RAM
- 32GB expandable memory via microSD card
- Android 4.2.2
- CDMA and GSM/3G connectivity
The Galaxy Beam 2 is also 11.6mm thick, a whole full millimeter thinner than the original Galaxy Beam. As per the pictures, it would seem the device is headed to China Mobile first, which we know thanks to the China Mobile 3G logo on the back. There’s no LTE bands listed in the filing, so it’s possible that this phone will be 3G only, at least in China. Until the phone is officially announced, which is usually when Samsung advises of their release plans there’s no guarantee that it will come LTE in other markets either.
With the phone running through certification, there should be some kind of announcement for the phone in the near future. At that time we’ll be asking Samsung Australia about availability locally.