UNBOXED: Reviewing the smART sketcher Projector
Growing up, I spent many an hour doodling in notebooks pretending that I was destined to be the next Van Gogh or Picasso. One of the ways I really honed my craft of drawing dinosaurs and racecars was to invest in packets of tracing paper. Seeing the lines and curves through the translucent paper helped me to learn how to eventually recreate those images on my own, without the need to trace over them.
Granted, tracing paper worked just fine—and probably still does—we’re in the year 2018 and the concept of learning how to draw of course has been modernized thanks to the launch of the smART sketcher projector.
A CE Week 2018 Best in Show winner, the smART sketcher is a $60 product that gives children (and curious adults like myself) the ability to sketch photos from preloaded SD cards or their smartphones through the projector. smART sketcher has a range of SD cards that let you load all kinds of themed images including animals, buildings, cars, space, dinosaurs, airplanes, and more. If that’s not enough to fulfill you or your child, you can also load images from your smartphone’s photo library into the projector and either trace them as is or convert them into sketches to get better-defined lines to trace.
As a product, the smART sketcher is very basic but in a positive way. The way the projector folds up makes it easy to store and doesn’t take up much space. When the head of the projector is attached and ready to use it looks like some sort of animal, which gives it some character. You can plug the projector using a wall adapter for continued use, or you can install four D batteries for on-the-go use.
To use the projector, you download the smART sketcher app, connect to the device via Bluetooth, and follow the short set up instructions. From there, you can access the images on your installed SD card or your own photo library, and start sketching. When tracing images off of the SD card, you can receive step-by-step instructions that walk you through how to draw the object. Photo library images on the other hand are just static. Everything you see coming from the projector is also displayed on the phone through the app, and everything you can control in the app is able to be controlled through the physical buttons on the front of the projector.
The only difficulty I had with the projector was finding a space dark enough where I could clearly see the image without having to reference the image on my smartphone. The large lines were there, but finding the little details was a little tough as they were washed out by any ounce of light that was nearby.
The fact that I was entertained by the smART sketcher for the better part of a workday, though, is enough for me to understand how and why kids could thoroughly enjoy this thing for hours on end. It’s a simple-to-use device that can be both educational and entertaining. As a dad, I completely understand and see the value that smART sketcher is providing here.