In the automotive world, bigger is almost always better, and dashboard screen sizes have followed that trend. “Infotainment” displays grow with every generation, and with the widespread adoption by the OEMs of Google’s Android Auto and Apple’s CarPlay integration, drivers can get smartphone-like functionality from their vehicle display during their morning commute. Good or bad, these displays are mainstream, and getting larger.
The story has been different with motorcycles, with displays improving and growing not in an attempt to add unnecessary entertainment features, but for the sake of legibility and clarity – mostly. Being able to see exact lean angles or brake pressure is not the kind of thing a rider should be concentrating on while leaned over or aggressive braking, but at least YouTube has not been added to screen functionality, yet. Motorcycle TFT dashboards have definitely improved in terms of being able to see speed, RPM, gear selected, and fuel remaining quickly at a glance. With the programmable nature of many modern motorcycles, having a large display to be able to make easy engine or suspension adjustments when stopped is definitely a big plus.
Recently, automotive supplier Bosch announced that it is supplying BMW with 10.25″ TFT displays for certain 2021 models. With the average auto display size currently somewhere around 8″, a display over 10″ on a motorcycle might seem a bit overkill, or even downright dangerous. However, Bosch feels that safety will not be compromised with their new system. The large display will utilize software to split the screen into two sections, via their “MySpin” smartphone app. One side will display typical motorcycle functionality, and the other will feature select smartphone apps, but only those with motorcycle-specific functionality, such as motorcycle trip planning app Rever.
So still no YouTube on your motorcycle dash. Yet.