Consumers probably don’t think much about windshield technology, but one company in the UK expects windshields to be infused with cutting edge technology by 2020. Instead of just looking through a window, drivers will eventually feel like they’re on the bridge of the Starship Enterprise.
Autoglass, the UK’s leading vehicle glass repair and replacement specialist, predicts that future windshields will function as an interactive visual display for everything going on in and around the car. While on the road, a driver will be able to see a range of data about speed, fuel and any issues with parts of the car, displayed conveniently on the windshield.
“As well as accounting for up to 30% of a vehicle’s structural strength, the windscreen has become an interactive tool for sharing information and improving the driver experience,” said Dr Chris Davies, head of technical research & innovation at Autoglass. “Essentially the car is becoming more like a laptop and the windscreen will evolve into the virtual information screen.”
Thanks to online mapping data and GPS technology, windshields in 2012 will also display an “augmented reality,” providing drivers with live, visual information about the places and hazards around them.
Davies continued, “Augmented reality technology has been widely used in smartphones for more than 18 months. Manufacturers are already working on assistance technologies such as collision avoidance systems, lane departure systems and sign recognition. We believe that within 10 years car manufacturers will have completely revolutionized the function of the car windscreen.”