01 Sep 2011
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Interactive car windows

For years the car window has sat stagnant, content to simply be looked through, to provide a view to the outside world and to never be stopped and looked at for its own merits. But what if we told you that this was about to change, and that your car window was about to become an interactive entertainment experience? Well that’s exactly what Toyota Motor Group in conjunction with Copenhagen Institute of Interactive Design have told the world through the launch of their amazing new video, ‘Window to the World.’ Window to the World shows a picture of an interactive passenger window that enables the user to draw pictures on windows, zoom in on picturesque views, check distance and translate surrounding objects into words. At times, the window could act as an Etch-a-Sketch, with the passenger tracing outlines of attractions outside the window. At another time, the screen could estimate the distance of objects from the car and translate these objects into a foreign tongue, offering a language and vocabulary lesson to passengers. In short, the road trip sheds its status as a lengthy burden and becomes an educational entertainment experience in its own right. Car manufacturing giant Toyota is not the only group seriously looking into this technology. Glasgow University is working on a similar project called Heads Up Display, a concept taken from the world of military aviation that would function as a computer-screen-like windshield that shows the driver vital driving information (speed, fuel levels) without them needing to take their eyes off the road.One last corporation straining to get their finger into the interactive window pie is luxury vehicle maker Cadillac. In conjunction with their marketing group, Fusion 92, they are working on an interactive window for the car showroom. When the potential buyer walks in, they see what looks like an ordinary display sticker denoting the vehicles price, features, fuel economy and so forth. However, as the customer goes to walk on by, the window begins to interact with them, allowing them to customize the cars features, watch videos of the car in action and tweet or Facebook about the car.So it seems imminent that, after years of being literally overlooked, the car window is about to become the main event, providing en route entertainment on road trips, enabling drivers to safely and conveniently check vehicle’s vital signs and even helping buyers to purchase the right vehicle for them. The car window is a dumb sheet of glass no more.

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