Comments by Projector Reviews staff:
Mitsubishi WD390U-EST "cloud" projector
Here's a new Mitsubishi projector geared for classroom or boardroom. 3000 lumens bright this projector claims as one of its main ways of differentiating itself, that it can present from "the cloud".
The WD390EST "Cloud" projector is a very short throw projector, which means it will typically be mounted above a screen or whiteboard. it doesn't need a computer, no thumbdrive, no DVD or Blu-ray player, just a way to reach a network (wired or wireless). Mind you it can interface with all those usual sources.
What we're talking about here, is presenting from remote servers - no local computer needed, and therefore no local applications needed. Whether presenting/teaching for a server that is a local network (for a school, as an example), or if it is a true shared 3rd party remote server in "the cloud" as described by Apple, Google, Rackspace, Yahoo, Microsoft, etc., doesn't really matter. Mitsubishi is simply making a projector that supports but doesn't need local assets beyond a network connection, to be a viable display for presenting and educating.
Will this change the face of using projectors in the classroom? For some perhaps. Is this totally unique? I really don't think so, as many projectors can talk wired, or wirelessly to networks. Fewer though can present from those networks - that is have the presentation materials on that network, not local.
Certainly this is a good feature. While for most classroom or boardroom type presentations, having the "cloud" option is a nice touch. Where real benefit can be seen, though is an easy way to tap into large databases of material for presentations and support, without having to download them and reorganize them first. I can see a teacher downloading a geography presentation from a school districts database of existing Geography presentations.
Mitsubishi Electric Can Display the Cloud with WD390U-EST Extreme Short Throw Projector Shown at FETC Education Conference in Orlando
No Computer Needed – Simple, Easy Connectivity Transforms Education and Presentation Market While Saving Customers Time and Money
ORLANDO, Fla., January 28, 2013 —As one of the world’s leading display manufacturers, Mitsubishi Electric is the first to take projection to the next level with its WD390U-EST projector: now content can be presented with no computer attached. Shown for the first time at the Florida Educational Technology Conference in Orlando, January 29-31, 2013 in Booth #1113, the Mitsubishi WD390U-EST cloud projector is poised to change the way users select a projector for their classrooms.
Called a “cloud projector,” the Mitsubishi WD390U-EST uses its built-in, thin client function to serve as a dynamic display device. And because a computer isn’t needed for new builds or technology upgrades, school districts and businesses adapting this new kind of projector can save money in these tough economic times.
Projector industry experts recognize the exceptional benefits this new technology offers: "By making it easy to get a document from your networked computer, server, smart phone, or other mobile device to the projection screen, the WD390U-EST provides PC-free projection that is both comprehensive and easy to use,” said Bill Livolsi, Associate Editor, Projector Central.
Users simply log onto their network and begin displaying content in seconds, whether from a local server, the internet or the cloud, giving
teachers and presenters access to files through the projector itself. As long as the new WD390U-EST extreme short throw projector is connected and logged on to a network, a Bluetooth-enabled keyboard and mouse, users can access content on a server, with such storage now referred to as “cloud content.”
No-fuss projection also means teachers don’t have to lug computers around, connect a computer to a projector and hope there are no technical issues, or carry presentation materials with them. School districts can store and distribute standardized teaching materials and content, and teachers can access these course materials in a snap, saving time for both teachers and IT professionals.
“Teachers have a unique set of issues when they present in the classroom and shouldn’t have to worry about technical problems when uploading their lessons or run late because of technical difficulties,” said Wayne Kozuki, product manager, Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America, Inc. “Our new WD390U-EST solves all those problems by making it really easy—teachers simply log on to the network, access their lessons and begin. This also is a great benefit for standardizing instructional technology and materials on a school-wide or district level. It’s the logical next step in presentation technology.”
By using free SidePad and WiFi Doc applications, the WD390U-EST projector also supports BYOD (Bring Your Own Display) initiatives with flexibility. Teachers and presenters can use a mobile device such as a tablet or a smart phone to access, mirror and control a computer that is connected to the projector and the same Wi-Fi network, and present Powerpoint®, Excel®, Word®, TXT, PPD and JPG files from their iOS or Android devices directly through the projector. For the first time, presenters are untethered from their computers and can control and present from any location within the classroom or meeting space. Both the SidePad and Wifi Doc apps are free downloads via the Apple® App store or Google Play.
Using Texas Instruments DLP® technology, the new projector boasts 3000 lumens of brightness as well as one of the longest estimated lamp lives available – up to 6000* hours in low mode. And in a continued nod to cost savings, a high-power, 10-watt speaker with variable audio output is built in so even when the projector is in stand-by mode, the speaker can still be used, eliminating the cost and necessity of external amplifiers and speakers.
Mitsubishi’s WD390U-EST projector is built with a specially crafted lens that provides excellent ultra short-throw focus performance, and can project a 70-inch (diagonal) wide-screen WXGA image from less than 23-inches away. Teachers and presenters can move in front of the image without creating distracting shadows on the screen.
The WD390U-EST offers HDMI™ support as well as easy set-up options for multiple video inputs. It has an RS232 connector and a built-in RJ45 input that offers plug-and-play connectivity with third-party remote management products such as those made by Crestron and AMX, as well as Mitsubishi’s ProjectorView™ Global+.
The projector comes with Mitsubishi’s three-year limited warranty on parts and labor, and a one-year limited warranty on the lamp; terms and conditions apply. Like all Mitsubishi data projectors, these new projectors are covered by the Express Replacement Assistance (ERA) Program, a comprehensive nationwide service that offers next business-day replacement** for down units that are under warranty.
“Mitsubishi continues to bring new technological innovation to its products,” said James Chan, vice president, marketing, Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America, Inc. “This new cloud projector is just the latest in a long line of Mitsubishi firsts.”
The Mitsubishi WD390U-EST will be available in March at a competitive price. Additional models will be announced throughout the first half of 2013.
About Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America, Inc.
Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America, Inc. is a US subsidiary of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation of Tokyo, Japan. Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America manufactures and markets projectors, data wall display systems, LCD digital signage monitors and players, industrial printers, photo kiosks and digital photo printers.
For more on Mitsubishi Electric Visual Solutions America, visit http://www.mevsa.com. Connect with Mitsubishi on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/MitsubishiDisplays) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/MitsuDisplays)
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*For an explanation of how this estimate was calculated, visit http://www.mitsubishi-presentations.com/wp-content/files_mf/lamp_and_lamp_life_document_v09132009.pdf. This estimate does not extend or otherwise modify the warranty for the lamp.
ProjectorView is a trademark of Mitsubishi Electric. DLP is a registered trademark of Texas Instruments. Other names are trademarks of their respective owners.