Samsung surprised us at CES 2022 when it debuted the Freestyle, a compact, portable projector that looks like a spotlight. At CES 2023, the Freestyle is back and Samsung has given it a new set of capabilities, including the ability to pair two Freestyles to create an ultrawide display.
The 2023 Freestyle is also geared toward new use cases, including “real-world metaverse” applications, though Samsung hasn’t said exactly what that means, or provided any examples. We’re also a bit hazy on exactly how the dual-screen functionality works, save for the company’s description of its Edge Blending technology, which enables two Freestyles to synchronize their projections, while automatically performing keystone correction and adjusting the picture.
With a maximum resolution of 1080p, the $800 device won’t work as a 4K TV replacement, but it could become a fun way to set up ad-hoc big-screen gaming sessions now that Samsung has added its new Gaming Hub to the Freestyle’s Tizen OS software.
Gaming Hub lets players play, pause, leave and pick up where they left off in any of the more than 1,000 cloud-based games that will be available by spring 2023. Gamers who own an Xbox or PlayStation can connect them via the micro HDMI 2.1 port and Gaming Hub will automatically recognize it and populate it on the Gaming Hub Dashboard.
Samsung says Gaming Hub will make recommendations based on what users play and lets them listen to their favorite tunes while playing. Titles will come from publishers and services like Xbox, Amazon Luna, Nvidia GeForce Now, and Utomik, with Antsream and Blacknut coming soon.