A pico projector is a tiny projector that is often used in business applications because of its ability to be transported from location to location easily. A number of different manufacturers make pico projectors. The term pico is often used in conjunction with a longer name, but is a standard term used to describe these very small projectors, regardless of who the manufacturer is. The advantages include not only convenience, but also cost.
The term pico is a universal term, originating from Spanish, meaning very small. Technically, the word indicates one trillionth of a unit. While this may be an overstatement of exactly how small these projects are, they can still comfortably fit within a pocket or suit jacket. Thus, the ability to carry a pico projector into presentations is unmatched. Typically, most traditional projectors are much more cumbersome to transport from place to place, and take more time to set up.
While many traditional projectors use a conventional incandescent lamp to power their projections, a pico projector, in most cases, uses an LED light source. Some of these miniature projectors use a laser, instead of an LED light. Those using lasers may cost a little more than the LEDs simply because the technology is so new. Still, for those who are interested in having the latest technology, either as a status symbol or as a matter of function, it may be worth the added expense.
Most pico projectors come with very few added features. Other than perhaps a focus, there is very little other manipulation that can be done to the typical pico projector. Most do not offer a color balance or have a way to set the contrast. This is another reason why their abilities may be somewhat limited for general use.
The pico projector has a number of disadvantages that tend to make the hardware even more limited in its use. In most cases, it is best to use it as a device for business presentations and viewing still images. While it may be possible to view video projections, a pico projector is not intended for this use and the quality may not be what most are used to. Even so, most can connect directly to DVD players, if that is a desire.
Another disadvantage is in the fact that the projectors, often no bigger than a pack of cigarettes, tend to not produce a great contrast with their surroundings. Thus, it may be necessary to make the room darker than usual in order to get an easily viewable image. Therefore, in rooms that have a great deal of ambient light they may be impractical.