In 2021 Samsung announced that it has topped the global TV market for 16 consecutive years. So we know they are excellent at making TVs.
But what if the folks at Samsung took all their expertise and made a user-friendly smart projector that everyone can use? That’s what The Freestyle is.
A Good Display
Without the need to make sure that the projector is levelled, square to the projection surface, or is in the right orientation, The Freestyle can project an HDR (HDR 10) compatible FHD (1920 by 1080 px) image up to 100-inches across (19:6 ratio) at 550 LED Lumen.
That means the projected image has excellent contrast, an acceptable resolution, and a decent projection size, and can be used in places that are dimly or partially lit.
I find it excellent for watching shows and movies with friends and family, and as a display for casual multiplayer video games.
Although The Freestyle can project on almost any surface, you’d want to get a simple projector screen to get the best image. To get the largest image, you’d also need to make sure the projector is at just the right distance (about 2.7 metres away) and is levelled against the screen.
To me, that’s usually not worth the effort and takes away from the simplicity of The Freestyle.
A Good Selection Of Apps
Because The Freestyle has the same brains as a Samsung smart TV, it has access to all the apps in the Samsung smart TV library.
It has all the staples, like Netflix, Amazon Prime and HBO Go; local favourites like Qiyi, and Viu; and surprises like Apple TV. However, it is missing some favourites like Disney Hotstar.
There are even some games in the library, but I’d say connect The Freestyle to a phone, PC, or gaming console if you want to play games.
I give extra points to The Freestyle for the ambient mode. These are like screen savers, some static and some animated. It can be used to simulate a window, play a slideshow, and add signage or lighting to a party.
It’s a fun novel idea that could be expanded to not only consumer but commercial use as well.
A Good Design
The Freestyle is meant to be so easy to use, you can just set it and forget it. But, Samsung put a lot of thought into the design of the device itself.
Its cylindrical shape is unassuming. On its side is a USB-C port for power and a Mini HDMI for input.
On its bottom is a 5w Omni directional Dolby Digital Plus speaker.
Overall, it’s creative. I like how it looks and functions, but there are a few things that Samsung could do to improve it.
For example, The Freestyle could be better with a full-size HDMI port (to complement its wireless connectivity), physical controls on the side instead of touch controls on the face of the projector, and a stand that could slide in to make it more compact.
As pointed out in the beginning, Samsung is very good at making TVs, so much so that in Samsung’s own line of products, I feel it’s The Freestyle’s biggest competitor.
For the same price of RM4,849 (after an RM150 discount) you can get a 43-inch The Frame or The Serif TV that has gorgeous matte displays, the latest 55-inch QLED 4K TV, or even a 65-inch Crystal UHD TV.
All these options can give you a superior TV experience with higher resolution displays, but at the cost of portability.
To Buy Or Not To Buy
If you’re someone who is looking for a capable, versatile, and portable smart display solution, then The Freestyle is it.
It can be set up anywhere, can connect to almost any device and can project images for decoration, entertainment, and even work.
However, if you just need a new TV, get a TV. One of the Samsung ones we recommended above should do just fine.