What Is an Interactive Projector? (Explained)

These days, the use of standard projectors in educational and business settings is normal. In fact, we’d be surprised to find any classroom or office without a projector.

But with the rise in popularity of interactive projectors, the standard models are becoming a thing of the past. The capabilities of interactive projectors far outweigh those of the standard units.

Read on as we take a look at what interactive projectors are and the different types and benefits of interactive projectors.

What Is an Interactive Projector

What is an interactive projector?

An interactive projector is an ultra-short throw model that unlike standard projectors allows users to interact with what is being projected. That is made possible by special sensors installed in them that can track movements. You’ll often find it mounted on a ceiling or wall over a projector screen or whiteboard.

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Types of interactive projectors

Two main types of interactive projectors exist today. They are:

DLP interactive projectors

These projectors work by making their own patterns over the projected image. You can’t see the patterns because they happen at a fast rate. The interactive pen then identifies those patterns and transmits them to the projector. After that, the projector makes a reflection of the movements on the whiteboard or projector screen.

Some projector models allow wireless connection while others don’t. A select few can be able to copy the edits made by an interactive pen and save them on the original document.

Infrared interactive projectors

Infrared interactive projectors contain a special camera in addition to the lens. This camera picks up infrared light from the interactive pen when you use it on a whiteboard or projector screen. The projector then reflects that movement to the projected image.

Advantages of using interactive projectors

In this section, we’ll cover some of the benefits or advantages of using interactive projectors.

Keeps students or co-workers interested

Projectors can enlarge text and images enabling students or co-workers seated at almost any position to easily follow along. But I think you would agree that slides can be boring and the audience losing interest wouldn’t be surprising.

That’s where interactive projectors come in. They can keep students and co-workers interested by watching you interact with the screen during a presentation. You can even invite students to engage with the screen, which can boost concentration and absorption of information.

Promotes teamwork

Another benefit of interactive projectors is promoting teamwork in educational settings or workplaces. They make team meetings more interesting by keeping the creative juices flowing in the workplace. In classrooms, students can work together to complete group assignments and better understand new concepts.

Improves productivity

Interactive projectors are also productivity boosters. They allow you to prepare presentations beforehand and you don’t have to waste time writing and erasing on a whiteboard. Setting them up is also straightforward and the risk of failure during a presentation is minimal.

Enables flexibility

With interactive projectors, you’re not limited to certain topics. You can easily switch things up without having to go to your device. Whether it’s a lecture or work presentation, you can switch between different topics or formats, if need be, effortlessly.

Environment conservation

Schools on average use up 2000 sheets of paper per day which translates to over 320,000 sheets every year for each school. And when it comes to offices, that number is even more and it may be hard to estimate in most cases.

One way to reduce paper wastage and conserve our environment is to use interactive projectors. This way students can digitally access notes or lecture content without having to print them out. And the same applies to offices.

Although interactive projectors won’t completely eradicate the use of paper, they are a major step toward a paper-free future.

Interactive projector: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a smartboard and a projector?

Smartboards differ from interactive projectors in many ways. They have smaller screen aspect ratios, shorter warranties, are more expensive, and can be used with a pen or finger as opposed to just a pen as in interactive projectors. 

Do you need a projector for an interactive whiteboard?

Yes, you need a projector for an interactive whiteboard. The projector enables the tracking of movements of the interactive pen on the whiteboard through the use of infrared light or built-in cameras.

Final Words

There’s no doubt that interactive projectors have transformed the way we present information in classrooms and offices. You no longer have to bore your audience with slides or print out lots of paper.

We hope this article has helped you get a better understanding of interactive projectors.