Review: Hudly Wireless allows you to add an in-car display

More and more vehicles today feature head-up displays (HUDs) that help drivers to keep their eyes on the road. While owners of older cars are out of luck with this feature, Hudly offers an aftermarket alternative, bringing HUD to those car drivers. We bought a Hudly Wireless Head-Up Display and tested it out.

What’s In The Box?

Hudly Wireless comes with three main components. The display, the mount, and the power cable. An OBD2 adapter is also in the box for cars equipped with an OBD2 socket. This adapter is optional as the operation of the device is not dependent on the adapter.

Installation

The installation is quite intuitive and simple.

(1) Slide the base to the bottom of the display.

(2) Peel off the adhesive on the base and attach it to the dashboard.

(3) Plug in the power cable. You’re done.

Connecting to the HUD with your phone is slightly more of a hassle if you are not familiar with the screen mirroring function.

Hudly uses screen mirroring to cast whatever that is showing on your phone to the display screen. To connect, you will need to first connect to the Hudly’s Wi-Fi network that is broadcasted from the device. (We are using an iPhone with the setup). Bring up the control center and tap on “Screen Mirroring.” Choose Hudly. Voila! Your phone is now cast on the head-up display

Design

Hudly is 7.1 by 5.3 inches with a 4.0 by 3.0 inches base. The angle of the base is adjustable which allows you to attach it on a sloped dashboard. The front of the device has five buttons to control the power, volume, and brightness along with a small speaker. In our test vehicles, the ideal location for the display is in the middle of the dashboard. The size of the HUD makes it a bit tough to fit right above the steering wheel.

Hudly projects images to the see-through display. In our test, we used google map as the navigation. The screen perfectly mirrored the display on the iPhone with a fraction of a second lag. The display changes brightness automatically. The image on the display is bright and clear on a sunny day.

There is also the Hudly App on both the App Store and the Google Play store for download. The app casts navigation, speedometer, date and time. The App has a slick user interface and the navigation performs just as well as the crowd-favorite google map or Waze. But it does not offer more than the typical navigation apps. The speedometer, date and time, may be cool but drivers can also use the built-in ones right in front of them. Using the Hudly App is purely based on personal preference and whether you would like to show your support to the Hudly team.

Final thoughts

Pros:

Simple installation and setup.

Bright display.

Cheap(er) alternative to built-in navi.

Cons:

Bulky design.

Not truly “wireless”.

Hudly is impressive with the user-friendly installation and setup. Its App is refreshing and performs at a high level. Overall, the technology of the HUD is 10 out of 10. As all built-in navigations from the manufacturers will likely take few extra thousand dollars out of your pocket, aftermarket HUDs like Hudly with a price tag at $299, becomes an attractive alternative to pimp out your car.

However, the bulky design does not fit all cars. Installing Hudly in a compact car will likely block the drives line of sight. The power cable can get messy as well. Hudly suggests users tuck the power cable behind the dashboard, stretch it along the bottom of the windshield, route it under the glove compartment to reach the cigarette lighter outlet in the center counsel. Today’s car manufacturers are increasingly adding more features to their dashboards. Placing a 7 by 5 inches machine on top of everything that is going on, seems a bit, extra. With all electronic devices going for a slimmer look and true wirelessness (laptops, phones, tablets) in the modern era, the brand new Hudly appears to be quite dated. We are looking forward to the next iteration of Hudly with a slimmer design that can blend into the modern car dashboards.

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