Samsung I8520 Beam is the first Android phone to pack a built-in projector and at 14.9 mm it is also the slimmest handset that we can think of with that feature. Unlike the Samsung I7500 Galaxy and I5700 Galaxy Spica, the I8520 has its UI thoroughly customized to match the latest Bada/TouchWiz amalgam.
Samsung I8520 Beam is the second phone to come with a Super AMOLED display and its 3.7" unit is even more impressive than that of the Samsung S8500 Wave. It also sports quite a powerful shooter capable of delivering 8 megapixel stills and 720p video.
384 MB of RAM make sure that the Samsung I8520 Beam rarely has memory shortages, while Wi-Fi, GPS and 3G with 7.2 Mbps HSDPA make up for a well geared connectivity department.
Unfortunately, the Samsung I8520 Beam software is still a long way from being ready so we couldn't quite check out every single aspect of it. Our first impressions are that the Android-running I8520 offers plenty of eye-candy but it is way slower than the Bada-powered Wave.
The Beam is definitely a fatty, when compared to the Samsung S8500 Wave but it still handles nicely and unless you want to slip it in jeans pockets it won't bother you at all.
Here is a quick video demo of the Samsung I8520 Beam user interface.
The jog dial actually turned out to be in charge of adjusting the pico projector focus, rather than having anything to do with the interface navigation.
The 10 lumens brightness of the built-in projector is fine if you are using it in next to complete darkness but fails to really impress even in moderately-lit rooms. It might just do the trick for showing the odd YouTube video to your friends but watching whole movies doesn't seem too comfortable to us.
At least the projector scores an extra point for delivering good WVGA resolution and being as easy as it gets to activate. A single click does the trick.
You can check out the projector in action in the video below.