The concept of HUD (heads-up display) originated all the way back in the Second World War when it was used in the fighter planes. Slowly, over the years, it has made its way into the automobile industry.
Fortunately, one does not have to own the latest model of a car (like the Volvo S90, for example) in order to use the HUD technology.
No, all that you need is your phone, a combination of HUD mobile apps, as well as the new heads-up mount I’ll be taking a look at today.
This is currently one of the most exciting Kickstarter projects and one that certainly deserves a more in-depth look.
In the last few years, there have been an increasing number of heads-up displays that you can use in your older car.
In response to their biggest rival, the Navdy, which costs around $500, the guys and girls from Hudway have decided to develop and release their new HUD system for a more affordable price.
Just like Navdy, this thing comes packed with the latest technology, as it has 2GBs of RAM memory, 16GBs of capacity, and uses an 8-core 64-bit CPU.
It’s an Android-based computer with features such as the Bluetooth 4.0 connection, gyroscope, accelerometer, GPS antenna, AUX output, microphone, IR camera, and the FM transmitter.
If there was ever a futuristic-looking Kickstarter project, this is the one – the Hudway Cast looks like something out of the movies.
Its transparent glass display makes me wish I was born a little later, in the time where these kinds of devices will be everywhere – not just in the cars of people who know a thing or two about the latest technology.
Features of Hudway Cast
I had some concerns for this product after the build-quality issues people encountered with the company’s previous product, the Hudway Glass, but there are no such problems here.
This device offers an excellent construction and certainly feels like an expensive product that warrants its high price.
Even though its design might seem simple at the first look, it has a sleek-looking LED strip which pulses when the device is talking.
It’s a much larger than it looks in the photos, but you shouldn’t have any concerns about its size. Owners of cars with smaller dashboards will find it compact enough to fit in their vehicles.
One excellent thing is that the manufacturer offers a template that will help you find out if the device fits on your dashboard.
Like I already said, the Hudway Cast comes packed with features.
It is powered through the OBD-II cable (it is included in the package), and also uses this connection to communicate with your car.
It will receive your vehicle’s data that will allow it to display all sorts of information – such as the fuel level, fuel economy, engine rpm, current speed, and other things.
If you’re concerned about the daytime visibility, you don’t have to worry.
The manufacturer claims that the display is 20 times brighter than those on the smartphones.
It has a high clarity level and works beautifully.
Once you connect your smartphone to device via the Bluetooth connection, you’ll be able to see the incoming messages and to answer the incoming calls.
Neat, isn’t it?
Another great thing is that the device allows you to channel its audio through your vehicle’s stereo, using the built-in FM transmitter or the AUX output.
Just like expected, there’s also the feature to control the music applications, which will come in very handy to all those who can’t live without music while they’re driving.
The device is capable of receiving data in two different ways.
The first would be your phone’s Wi-Fi hotspot connection, while the second includes using the device’s own 4G LTE connection through the SIM card.
Fortunately, the CEO of Hudway says that his company will eventually team up with some cellular providers and offer a reasonably-priced data plan to customers.
Watch video below for full product presentation.
The primary purpose for data would, of course, be the navigation, and the device allows the user to download the desired offline maps.
The CEO also claims that the Hudway Cast has a very intelligent navigation system that can download the maps of only those areas you drive through regularly.
This, of course, prevents the download of large, unnecessary map files – who needs a map of the entire state if he’s only driving to his work and back?
The device, actually, displays the information at the focal distance of eight feet. This means that you won’t see the data right there on screen – it will look like it’s hovering on the hood of your car.
This certainly deserves some praise, as it not only keeps your eyes on the road but has that futuristic look that everybody likes so much. I also liked the navigation system itself, as it works flawlessly and with no mistakes.
Image Credit: KickStarter.com
When it comes to the included accessories, you will also be getting:
- a lens cover,
- the dash mount,
- a cigarette lighter cable,
- the magnetic phone mount,
- as well as the warranty
- and the quick-start guide.
I was left disappointed by some Kickstarter projects, but this company has a history of delivering, and I think that this device is something worth counting on.
For the price that it comes at, this product will help you navigate the roads, while, at the same time, allowing you to keep your eyes on the road.
It comes with a pretty powerful configuration and the features that will make all technophiles want this device under their Christmas tree.
I found Hudway Cast to be an almost flawless product and one that I definitely intend to use in the future. Its transparent screen doesn’t hinder the driver’s vision, but at the same time provides him with navigation, as well as with the ability to control music and receive calls.
What more could one want?
- Geeky Gadgets: Hudway CAST In-Car Head-Up Display (HUD) From $179 (video)
- Android Police: HUDWAY’s Cast Kickstarter promises an affordable and universal heads-up display for your car
- Android Community: The HUDWAY Cast is a HUD that lets drivers keep their eyes on the road
- Business Insider: This device projects your sat nav onto a transparent screen so it doesn’t hinder your vision