In the past few years, campaigns have been launched to make roads safer. Many of them have been targeted towards drivers and pedestrians who've become distracted on their mobile phones, talking or texting. The potential for accidents to occur when drivers are distracted by an email or text is also related to elements like speed, weather conditions, and traffic.
This has become such a large issue that apps, phone settings, and ad campaigns have all been developed to tackle the issue of distracted drivers. According to HUDWAY, 30% of all US drivers read or send text messages and emails while they're driving. This percentage is troubling because, according to the CDC 1,000 people are injured in crashes due to distracted drivers every day in the US alone- 9 of those approximately 1,000 people are killed.
Of course, the answer to reducing deaths and injuries attributable to distracted driving is to reduce the source of distraction, this mainly has to do with ensuring that we are alert while driving and acknowledge that the email, tweet or text can wait until our trip is completed. Sometimes, however, it's difficult to quell these behaviors, this is there HUDWAY comes in. Even if you are appalled by these statistics and consciously make choices to reduce or eliminate distractions, there are still some basic in-car activities that are difficult to eliminate, especially seemingly benign activities like using your GPS or changing the music. In addition, though we all know that texting or reading while driving is dangerous, getting others to change their everyday behaviors to make streets safer, is easier said than done.
Anything on your smartphone screen can be streamed as is to HUDWAY Cast lens. This way, you can create a route in your favorite navigation app, stream it to HUDWAY Cast and see directions you’re used to in your line of sight.
So what does HUDWAY do? Their product, HUDWAY Cast, is a portable in-car display that features directions, can receive calls and texts and allows drivers to change the music in a safer, easier and more convenient way. The display, called a head-up display is placed on the dashboard of the car, right above the steering wheel. Its translucent display allows it to be viewed easily without blocking the driver's view of the road or forcing them to lower their heads.
Head-up display (HUD) devices are especially helpful because they place important information at eye level so the driver doesn't have to divert their eyes from the most important aspect of driving, the road. There are other HUD devices in the market, however, many of them are built-in devices that are expensive. Most HUD devices on the market, according to HUDWAY, are also unable to present the same displays that their device makes possible, meaning that users are likely to continue using their smartphone to check messages and navigate in addition to using HUD devices for directions or for music.
We can’t deny there may be a need to stay connected even when you’re driving. But we believe there should be a safer way to use a smartphone behind the wheel, and we hope to change everyone’s driving habits for the better— with an affordable and universal HUD solution.
The HUDWAY Cast features an external display for the user's smartphone so that users' eyes can adjust more easily on the road after looking at the projection. HUD Cast provides appropriate contrast for both day and night conditions so directions and information are easy for the user to see and the self-installation process takes just minutes. The device connects to most smartphones and tablets and can mirror app functions on its display. HUD Cast also features a magnetic mount that attaches the holder of your smartphone. This mount, which can be attached within reach of the driver, allows users to navigate apps easily. The resulting information is then displayed on the screen of the HUD device so the user doesn't have to lower their eyes. Currently, their device supports navigation, calls, messaging, music, location sharing, dashboard widgets and it allows gesture control. They're hoping to launch their product March of this year, once their Kickstarter campaign has ended.
Making information easily visible to users is a huge step towards preventing driver distraction. At the end of the day, however, it all depends on the drivers themselves- directions to your destination may be a must especially if you aren't familiar with the area or have been diverted from your regular route, however a text or Facebook post should never cost you (or someone else) their life or safety. Each time we put ourselves behind the wheel of a vehicle, we'll have to make the conscious choice to be responsible and not distracted. Hopefully, HUDWAY has acquainted us with yet another way to do so.