Tesla Motors Introduces Mobile App for Model S Sedan

By · February 06, 2013

Model S Phone App

Tesla Motors yesterday launched a new free mobile app for its Model S sedan. Judging from the initial reviews online, users are very impressed with its everyday usability and sleek functionality. Available at iTunes and Google Play, the application allows real-time monitoring of charging progress, the ability to stop or start charging, and remote heating or cooling of the cabin (a major plus in terms of conserving battery power). Other handy features include remote locking and unlocking of the vehicle, the ability to honk the horn and flash the lights—when the car is parked—and control of the Model S’ panoramic sunroof.

“Just got the app and love it! Just turned on climate control to preheat my car for the ride home,” wrote one reviewer with the username ‘jginpa’ in a summary of the app at the iTunes store. “Tesla even matches the color of your car to the photo of the car in the app!” enthused another reviewer with the handle ‘Hover MCO.’ “This is a very clean, no-manual-required app. Just like the car, it’s user-friendly!”

Mobile smart phone applications are becoming a standard feature of electric cars and EV charging. Multiple competing apps are available to find charging stations, monitor charging, activate public chargers, and share access to private chargers—and to perform a host of remote functions for the vehicle itself.

Some reviews of the Model S app asked for the possibility to schedule charge times, especially to take advantage of off-peak charging rates, along with other HVAC-related features, such as control of the front and rear defroster.

Tesla Motors has promised the app is a baseline for future upgrades, so expect user feedback to influence the next round of functions and features—and for each manufacturer to learn from one another what EV drivers would like to see in remote smart phone functionality.

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