Introduction: Smartphone Heads Up Display for Car

Picture of Smartphone Heads Up Display for Car

Have you ever been driving and look down at your speed only to realize your hand or even the steering wheel is in the way. You can move your hand or duck your head to read it, but that seemingly insignificant glance equals more time NOT looking at the road. If only there was a way to check your speed without having to take your eyes off the road without having to purchase an expensive OBD (or do you have OBD2?) heads up display system for your car.

Wait! There is!

Follow these simple steps to turn your old smartphone into a safe, reliable, accurate and effective heads up display (HUD).

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

You simply need the following:

  • Smartphone
  • Velcro with self-adhesive backing
  • Scissors to cut velcro
  • Window/dashboard cell phone mount (optional)

Step 2: Download an App

In the Play Store or App Store, search for HUD or Heads Up Display. There will be dozens to choose from. For the purpose of this Instructable, I have downloaded the app JustHUD from the Play Store.

Step 3: Attach the Velcro

Picture of Attach the Velcro

Cut the Velcro strips to fit the back of Peel off the protective strip from one part of the Velcro and attach it to the back of your phone.

Do not peel the second strip yet.

Step 4: Find the Best Location

Picture of Find the Best Location

Activate the app. Lay your cell phone face up on the dash just under the windshield. Adjust it to the best location that will give the highest visibility and reflection.

Peel the protective strip from the second half of the Velcro and lay your phone back in the spot that had the vest visitibility. Press and hold the phone down to get a good adherence to the dash.

This will prevent the phone from sliding off the dash while driving.

Step 5: Test It Out

Picture of Test It Out

Go for a drive. You should be able to see your speed projected onto the windshield while you drive.

The actual display of the phone will be the mirror image, so do not worry about that, it will project properly on the glass.

As you can see in the video, it is accurate. It uses GPS location and satellite tracking to determine speed. There is no WiFi or data signal required.

Step 6: Optional Step

Picture of Optional Step

In bright light, or driving into the sun, the display may wash out and become invisible.

In that case, you can use the window/dash mount cell phone holder and place it on the windshield about the same place as the HUD.

You will have to adjust the settings of the app to show the display regular instead of mirrored, but it will work just as well.

I hope you find this helpful and easy to do.

Drive safe! Drive Friendly!


curtis.newton.104203 (author)2016-06-11

dumbest thing ever

Good day, curtis.newton.104203.
I can appreciate your opinion.

Please know that every time you put down your Shake Weight and change out of your Snuggie. Or when you climb back into your Ford Edsel, crank up the music on your Microsoft Zune and drive to McDonald's for your delicious Arch Deluxe. As well as, the times that you check your email on your Apple Newton while drinking a refreshing Crystal Pepsi, with a side of Olestra infused WOW! Chips, that your opinion not only is appreciated, but you single-handedly increased my views and comments stats.

For that, curtis.netwon.104203, I say thank you for checking out my instructable!

yezsocrafty (author)2015-10-14

Great project!

JokerDAS (author)yezsocrafty2015-10-14


amberrayh (author)2015-09-04

Cool idea. Thanks for sharing!

JokerDAS (author)amberrayh2015-09-05

Thank you!
You are welcome.

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