First I thought it might distract the driver but then when I read properly, it is just a 5.1 inch wide glass head-up display that you can put on your dashboard. The information is displayed on this glassy display through a projector that can be connected to your mobile phone in order to receive all the information that normally your mobile phone receives. Whenever your smartphone receives a text message, a Twitter notification, or anything that may end up distracting you, it is immediately beamed onto the display screen and you can have a look without taking your eyes off the road.
Even for directions this can be a great advantage. In order to navigate you have to take your eyes off the road and look at your phone or any other instrument that is supposed to give you the navigation details. If the navigation details are being beamed right in front of you, you can keep on driving undistracted while having all the information right in front of you on a totally transparent screen. Your view is never obstructed. You only see the information in a transparent square. Basically this is how the tiny projector functions:
And this is how it may look when you’re sitting behind the wheel (the situation may differ according to whether your wheel is on the left-hand side or the right-hand side):
So it is not like the display screen is embedded into your windshield and hence making it into a highly expensive affair. Touchscreens are available in the market but they are put into only very expensive vehicles at this moment. This device costs you just around $ 500. It’s made by a company called Navdy and here is a neat video explaining the whole thing on their website.
The device that comes with the size of a small paperback has an accelerometer, electronic compass and a light sensor. For connectivity it comes with Bluetooth 4.0 and Wi-Fi transmitters. It can be connected wirelessly to your smartphone. Once an app like Google Maps is activated (when someone is calling, as shown in the video) the display appears on the glass. You can control various aspects of your smartphone using the hand gestures. You can also send text messages and tweets while driving. If the device is plugged into the OBD II port it can also tell you your current speed and your fuel economy. It can also share your current location ETA. It works with iOS as well as Android devises as long as it is paired with them. The only catch is, the device needs to be plugged into the on-board computer which cars are supposed to be having since 1996 (haven’t come across them at least in India).
What’s the greatest benefit of this tiny projector that you can conveniently place on your dashboard? You don’t have to look at your phone, a habit that causes many accidents and deaths worldwide. Whether you want to check directions, talk to someone on your phone or send and receive text messages, all can be done in a tiny 5.1 inch screen that seems to appear right in front of you on your windshield.