Garmin HUD projects directions onto your windshield

Smartphones have pretty much taken over as the default navigation tool for many drivers. However, some locales (including our home state of California) have outright banned smartphone use in the car: no windshield mounts, no dashboard cradles. So, how are you going to get your turn-by-turn directions when looking at your phone is illegal? Today, Garmin announced a new way to interact with its StreetPilot and Navigon smartphone navigation apps: the HUD.

HUD -- short for head-up display -- sits on the dashboard at the base of the windshield, where it projects navigation data upward into the driver's line of sight, either onto a transparent film affixed to the windshield glass or a reflector lens that attaches to the HUD device. Both the film and reflector lens are included with the device.… Read more

iPad Mini Retina's display is a moving target: Here's why

Exactly when Apple's Retina version of the iPad Mini will appear isn't easy to predict. That's because display suppliers' plans change -- sometimes frustratingly often.

By all accounts, the Retina Display slated for a future version of iPad Mini is really hard to make. NPD DisplaySearch, IHS iSuppli, and Citi Research have all made this case.

NPD DisplaySearch was one of the first to proffer a timeframe for the 2,048x1,536 resolution 7.9-inch display. Production of the display was originally thought to begin in July. (And, remember, this is the display only not the tablet … Read more

LG to mass-produce flexible displays for smartphones

LG Display is about to embark on the mass production of smartphone display panels that reportedly don't break, crack, or shatter -- because they can bend.

By the fourth quarter of this year, the electronics company plans to be supplying the flexible displays to a host of major clients, according to The Korea Times.

"We have completed the development of our first flexible displays. We will mass produce flexible displays from the fourth quarter of this year," the company told The Korea Times. "We will apply a 4.5th generation glass-cutting technology for the OLED flexible … Read more

Super-sharp displays on Android phones take on Apple

HTC, Sony, and Huawei are leading the charge into large, full high-definition phone displays, said DisplayMate Technologies. It's a market Apple has yet to enter.

"With the iPhone 4 Retina display, Apple pioneered the previous generation of smartphone displays in 2010," wrote Raymond Soneira in DisplayMate Technologies' Full HD Flagship Smartphone Display Technology Shoot-Out released on Tuesday.

"This time the pioneers are all Android devices, with the iPhone still not even at the basic HD resolution of 1,280x720," he said.

Apple has some catching up to do to achieve "true Retina," as … Read more

Samsung said to be supplying next-gen iPad screens

Despite Apple and Samsung's intense rivalry and legal spats, the South Korean tech giant is now said to be one of the key suppliers for the next iterations of Apple's iPad and iPad Mini.

That's according to ETNews, which is citing industry sources and saying that Samsung is readying both 7.9- and 9.7-inch displays for the two devices, both with 2,048x1,536 pixel, or "Retina Display," resolution.

The report adds that the displays are headed first to the iPad Mini in the third quarter, followed by the full-size iPad in the fourth … Read more

Apple's high-res wallpaper suggests Retina iMac, monitor

The release of a 5,120x2880-pixel wallpaper image indicates that Apple could bring high-resolution Retina displays to its iMac line of desktop all-in-one computers and external monitors.

The 3.3MB "OSX_hero_2x" image shows the blue and green ocean wave that's featured in the upcoming OS X Mavericks version of Apple's operating system. Its width and height are exactly double that of of the 2,560x1,440-pixel screen on the current 27-inch iMac.

Marvin Scharle of German Web site design firm Conclurer flagged the high-res Mavericks wallpaper on Twitter.

As Apple has spread its Retina displays across … Read more

Apple's new MacBook Airs: What we didn't get

SAN FRANCISCO -- Apple's new MacBook Airs look better than before, but they don't reach for the stars.

OK, so I'll admit: having a potential 12-hour battery life is incredible. It's a very big deal indeed. But the new 2013 MacBook Airs unveiled at Apple's WWDC keynote weren't revolutions of design, or even of features. They're another well-polished upgrade step to an already excellent laptop that's becoming as familiar in form as an iPod or an older MacBook Pro.

To be honest, there was more on my wish list. Primarily, this.

Higher-res … Read more

Sprint to launch Android 4.1 flagship device dubbed Vital?

Word has it that Sprint is looking to debut its own high-end large-screened Android 4.1 smartphone, according to Engadget.

Sources familiar with the matter have given Engadget a host of photos and specs on the alleged ZTE-made device -- supposedly named "Vital." In addition to running on Android's Jelly Bean, the phone is said to have a 5-inch HD display, 13-megapixel rear camera, 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 8GB of internal storage, and a 2,500mAh battery. Apparently, the device will run on Sprint's 4G LTE network.

News of this mysterious flagship device first leaked in … Read more

Hon Hai to open display R&D center in Japan

Hon Hai is trying to expand beyond its role as a parts supplier to tech companies by devoting more research into display panels.

The company announced today that it will set up a new R&D center in Japan to focus on display and touch panels, according to Reuters. Any new technologies created at the center will be used for consumer, commercial, and medical products, Hon Hai said.

The new Japanese center will mark the company's third R&D facility in Asia, following one in Taiwan and another in China. Hon Hai said it plans to consolidate … Read more

Review: Track your network bandwidth use with ShaPlus Bandwidth Meter

If you really need to watch your Internet bandwidth, you need ShaPlus Bandwidth Meter. Unlike online bandwidth meters, ShaPlus monitors your Internet bandwidth instead of testing your connection speed. ShaPlus is designed to stay open in the Windows system tray, with a more detailed (but still compact) display for the notification area or anywhere on the desktop you care to drag and pin it. This free tool keeps track of your bandwidth use for the current session, the day, and the month. You can set it to track your billing period and even to stop tracking between specified times. Recent … Read more