OEM innovator Bosch is looking to bring 3D to your dashboard for GPS applications, replace your mechanical gauges with a customizable LCD and allow for driver and passenger to simultaneously share a screen for disparate uses.
The 3-D effect is achieved through the clever arrangement of a pair of LCD's sandwiched atop one another and a special screen built into the display. It wasn't the brightest or sharpest display, but it looked very cool and had tangible depth.
Their instrument display panel technology is already in use by Mercedes, and as panels fall in price, more new cars might benefit from the technology. Because it's just a display, manufacturers will be able to create completely customizable instrument panels for their customers. We imagine that different driving modes could have their own optimized instrument configurations, and users might be able to "skin" the interface to match their personal tastes.
Their dual view display uses the viewing angle limitation of LCD screens as a feature, making it possible for the driver to see one thing while the passenger sees something completely different. On the display we looked at, the driver was able to see a phonebook application, while the passenger was able to watch a rock concert.
Putting any or all of these technolgies into a car would feel like stepping into the future. We look forward to seeing them crop up sooner than later.