Tesla CEO Elon Musk reiterated that owners will be able to watch videos on the large screens inside its vehicles and link the feature to the deployment of WiFi at Supercharger stations.
It’s often the first question people ask when they see the large center screens inside Tesla’s vehicles: can you watch a movie on this?
The short answer is no.
Tesla has always blocked video playback for regulatory reasons related to the potential danger of distracting drivers.
Aside from a few hackers who managed to get around the software restrictions, video can’t be played on the center screen of Tesla vehicles.
However, more recently Tesla has been open to the idea of enabling video playback in safe environments.
Now CEO Elon Musk says that Tesla will enable playing videos when parked and connected to a WiFi network:
It will enable video when parked & connected to WiFi. All Tesla Superchargers will have free WiFi over time.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 7, 2019
Musk also announced that all Tesla Supercharger stations will eventually come with free WiFi access.
The goal is presumably to enable owners to watch videos in their cars while charging at a Supercharger station.
The in-car video playback capacity is expected in Tesla’s version 10 software, which doesn’t have a clear timeline yet.
Obviously, this is a feature that would also work great in a self-driving future.
Elon has been guiding the release of Tesla’s full self-driving system by the end of the year, but it will likely require the driver to still monitor the vehicle at that point.
Once that’s not the case anymore, the in-car experience will likely evolve fast and things like video streaming inside vehicles are some of the obvious features that will be developed to keep passengers busy.
Some even speculated that Tesla going with a horizontal screen in Model 3 was related to that. I believe it’s more about compensating for the lack of instrument cluster, but it might have also played a role in the decision. Who knows?
Either way, it makes sense to start introducing the feature now – starting with only allowing it to work when parked.
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