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Added 18 October, 2013

Will heads-up displays make driving safer for everyone?

Until self-driving cars become a reality, we will still be behind the wheel ourselves, trying to navigate our own ways as we go. Digital maps with turn-by-turn directions have become ubiquitous in cars around the world. But they require drivers to take their eyes off the road to use them. That is the problem that is being solved by heads-up displays that project images onto windshield glass so drivers don't have to look down for information. Several car companies have toyed with incorporating heads up displays into their higher-end models, but the technology is not in wide use. Questions remain about the safety of displaying information in front of the driver, with arguments on both sides. In response, we are seeing the launch of after-market products that attempt to produce the same effect. The Garmin HUD, for example, connects with your mobile device and projects its screen onto a transparent film you attach to your windshield. The device works wirelessly with Bluetooth and automatically adjusts its brightness level, so its projections are clearly visible in direct sunlight or at night. In theory, this is a good idea. If the tech is used for second-screen multitasking, like reading the news and checking email, it could be a disaster.
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