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Netflix, YouTube to join Tesla infotainment

Charge and chill: By providing more in-car entertainment functions, Tesla is giving customers new ways to pass the time while their vehicles are charging.

Musk says ‘v10’ Tesla software update to introduce in-car Netflix, YouTube streaming

31 Jul 2019

THE next Tesla Motors infotainment software update will include the ability to stream video from Netflix and YouTube through the supersized dashboard touchscreens of Model S, Model X and Model 3 vehicles while they are stationary.


As is customary, the upcoming feature was announced on Twitter by Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who described the new in-car experience as “an amazingly immersive, cinematic feel due to the comfy seats and surround-sound audio”.


In response to a Twitter user who asked when the ‘v10’ software update including the video-streaming functionality would become available, Mr Musk replied: “Maybe August, not more than few months.”


He added that the feature will be enabled while the vehicle is in motion “when full self-driving is approved by regulators” and confirmed that the v10 software would also introduce text-messaging functionality.


Also promised by Mr Musk via Twitter that “several games and infotainment features, improved highway Autopilot, better traffic light and stop sign recognition and Smart Summon” are also on the way.


New-generation in-car games under the ‘Tesla Arcade’ banner were introduced in June, debuting with Beach Buggy Racing 2 in which the player controls a cartoon Model 3 through an obstacle course by turning the vehicle’s steering wheel and using the multi-function buttons to accelerate and brake.


Tesla’s official Twitter account launched the gaming platform with a video captioned by the words: “Your next charging session is going to be so much fun.”


A chess game was added last week.


In addition to expanding what is already the world’s most comprehensive fast-charging network, Tesla appears to be responding to increased EV competition by providing more in-car entertainment functions that give customers new ways to pass the time while their vehicles are charging.


On a more practical level, during the Twitter conversation that followed his in-car video-streaming announcement, Mr Musk said he hoped to get “Joe Mode” included in the v10 update, which halves the audio volume of various warning chimes in order to avoid waking sleeping passengers.


Asked about specifics of Tesla’s ‘Full Self Driving’ capability, Mr Musk confirmed the system would “recognise and read all (road) signs” and that the company was “focused on traffic lights and stop signs right now”.


“Most are very easy. (The) difficulty is millions of corner cases,” he said.

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