Tesla is pushing new features, Dog and Sentry mode, to most models today
Always love a good dog and
pony sentry show.
It must be nice being the benevolent super-genius Elon Musk. When he’s not building rockets for a quick getaway, or building tunnels under his
lair SpaceX building to send Teslas through for a quick getaway, he’s on Twitter talking to the common people.
During those tweet-of-consciousness spells, he also likes to take on board suggestions for new product features. Some of the coolest and most useful features added to his range of Tesla electric vehicles have come from these impromptu Q&A sessions, and now two more have gone live.
“Dog Mode” was prompted by one Twitter user, who wanted a way to let passers-by know that their canine friend wasn’t overheating and wouldn’t be left alone long. It’s now rolling out to Model 3 users in the United States, with Model X and S owners who have vehicles built after Aug 2017 getting the update later.
Turning it on is simple, go into climate controls and hit the DOG option. You’ll be able to change the temperature within pre-set limits, and once set the dashboard screen will show the temperature and a friendly message for anyone who thinks your furry friend might be in distress.
Introducing Dog Mode: set a cabin temperature to keep your dog comfortable while letting passersby know they don't need to worry pic.twitter.com/xFU6MGZT53
— Tesla (@Tesla) February 14, 2019
Sentry mode also goes live with this update
Tesla also added another mode to this update, Sentry Mode, which turns the eight outward-facing cameras on the Tesla into a sophisticated security system. If your car detects someone leaning on it, it’ll go into an Alert state, start recording from all cameras and display a notification of the recording on the dashboard screen.
If damage occurs to the car, it’ll kick it up a notch to an Alarm state, which plays music from the audio system at full volume, on top of the usual alarm blaring away. Sentry mode needs manual activation, and it also needs a formatted USB drive if you want to download any recordings for future use.
This is pretty cool, but I wish it didn’t need you to plug in a USB drive before switching on the mode. Any thief that smashes the window will know to look for that drive, potentially removing the only recording of the incident, making this all a big PR stunt instead of actually useful.
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