Zoom announces its video conferencing app is coming to Tesla

By Gabe Rodriguez Morrison
Zoom announces Tesla integration at Zoomtopia Keynote
Zoom announces Tesla integration at Zoomtopia Keynote
Zoom

Elon has previously announced that video conference capabilities will be available in Teslas, but Zoom has now officially announced its video conferencing software will be available in Teslas soon.

Zoom made the announcement during its annual 2022 event, Zoomtopia.

Although Zoom made the announcement, it looks like the integration is being developed by Tesla.

Tesla looks to be leveraging Zoom's popular web interface for this new feature. This means that Zoom will function much like Netflix and Youtube currently do in the vehicle, where it's run in a chromeless browser and Tesla essentially builds on top of this.

The Zoom app is expected to become a part of Tesla Theater when it's released and is largely expected to function the same way, such as requiring Premium Connectivity and only being available while the vehicle is parked.

Camera and Resolution

Instead of requiring a separate camera, the Zoom app appears to utilize the vehicle's interior camera, which means it'll be the first time we have direct access to the cabin camera video stream, although hacks by GreenTheOnly have previously shown the capabilities of the camera.

The vehicle's cabin camera has a resolution of 1280x960, which is a 4:3 aspect ratio. However, Tesla may be cropping this camera feed to 16:9, which means it'll end up with a resolution of 1280x720, or 720p.

The only remaining cameras that will not be directly accessible by the driver will be the b-pillar cameras and two of the front-facing cameras.

Controls

The new Zoom controls are similar to those when on a phone call. In a Model 3 and Model Y, the controls will appear on the bottom left corner of the display and feature options to toggle the video and mic on and off.

The last two buttons appear to be used to view the participants on the call and end the meeting.

In the video, it was also shown that Zoom meeting links will now appear on your vehicle's calendar if available. Tapping on the link will automatically launch Zoom and start the meeting.

Vehicle Support

Since this new feature will likely rely on the vehicle's cabin camera, it will most likely be limited to the Model 3, Model Y and the new Model S and Model X.

During the announcement, Zoom said the feature was coming to “all new Tesla models soon.”

It's not clear whether this means Zoom will only be offered on MCU3-based vehicles, or older models with Atom processors as well. However, given the similarity to other streaming apps, we expect this feature to be offered on MCU 2 and MCU 3 cars.

Elon previously alluded to video conferencing being added back in 2020 and the first MCU 3 vehicle was introduced in June 2021.

App Store

When a Zoom icon was found earlier this year in a Tesla interface video it sparked rumors of an app store coming to Teslas.

However, we don't believe that's what's happening here. While an app store may be an idea that is being developed at Tesla, we think this Zoom integration will simply be another app that is offered in addition to YouTube and others.

Release Date

Zoom and Tesla haven't shared an official timeframe for release of this feature, but Zoom did mention the feature would be available soon during its keynote.

It's possible Zoom let the cat out of the bag with this announcement and that it was planned as one of the surprise features in Tesla's upcoming 2022 Christmas update.

Zoom in Action

Watch Zoom’s segment on its Tesla video conferencing integration below.

More About Tesla’s WiFi Garage Door Support, Its Cost and Features

By Nuno Cristovao
How MyQ will be integrated in Tesla vehicles
How MyQ will be integrated in Tesla vehicles
MyQ

Tesla is getting ready to introduce WiFi garage door support to their vehicles through MyQ.

Since our article yesterday additional details have emerged about how MyQ will operate, which vehicles will be supported and whether there will be a cost to use the service. This information is based on a page that appeared briefly on MyQ's website but has since been removed.

Vehicles Supported

MyQ's website stated that support for their garage door openers would be coming to the Model 3 and Model Y. While this makes a lot of sense because those vehicles don't include a HomeLink module, we'd be surprised if Tesla didn't also add support for the Model S and Model X.

Cost

Let's get cost out of the way. Although MyQ does not charge a fee today to remotely open and close their garage doors, they do plan on charging a fee to use their devices in vehicles. This could be looked at similarly to how some services are free to use on a PC but require a subscription to use on your mobile phone.

The price posted on MyQ's website was a five-year plan for $179, which is still cheaper than Tesla's $350 installation cost for HomeLink.

Unfortunately, this removes a big benefit we thought MyQ would have over buying a HomeLink module for the Model 3 or Model Y. For Model S and Model X owners who already have HomeLink included in their vehicles, it may not make as much sense.

However, MyQ does provide some advantages over HomeLink.

Integration

The good news is that MyQ integration will be very similar to HomeLink, and better in some ways. What appears to be a rendering of the feature working in a Tesla was also posted to their website which shows off a screen very similar to HomeLink.

On the MyQ settings screen, you'll have a list of supported devices on the left side, such as garage doors, gates and possibly lights, but we haven't see any evidence of the latter yet.

On the right side, you'll see options pertaining to the device selected, such as its current state, whether the garage door should auto-open or close and the distance when the device should be triggered.

You'll also be able to have the vehicle fold in its mirrors when reaching the target location.

If you've used HomeLink, this should all look very familiar since it's almost exactly the same. However, there are a couple of differences that give the advantage to MyQ.

The first is that MyQ is a smarter system and it knows the state of your garage door. So if you're arriving home and the garage door is already open, it won't try to close it on you.

The other advantage is distance. Since MyQ works over the internet you'll be able to trigger the garage door or gate from further down the driveway, giving the door plenty of time to fully open before you arrive.

MyQ supports an array of devices, but it waits to be seen whether there will be support for these additional devices such as lights and door locks.

Tesla expected to add HD radar to vehicles next month

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla discloses new hardware, is it HD radar?
Tesla discloses new hardware, is it HD radar?
@Taka87

Tesla requested more time for details to be kept confidential, and in doing so, everyone now knows something is up. A document dated November 18, 2022, appeared on Twitter on December 6. It’s from Tesla Inc. and addressed to the Federal Communications Commission. In the brief letter, Certification Engineer Cindy Li requests a 60-day extension of a previous agreement to keep a device secret. This mysterious letter set the Tesla sphere on fire with speculation to find out what is the secret device.

All we know from the letter is that model number 1541584 includes a user manual, internal photos, external photos, and test setup photos. Whatever this device is, it was going to be made public by the FCC on December 7, 2022. Tesla asked for an extension because the device will not be ready until mid-January 2023. The company wants to “avoid any unnecessary disclosure and competitive harm before our product launch…”

The poster of the letter, Twitter user @Taka87 reached out to well-known Tesla hacker @greentheonly, for some insight. The response: … something potentially major planned for mid-January which is just a bit over a month away... Like something that coincides with a sensor suite change.

That opens the door for the return of radar, which was removed last year and/or ultrasonic sensors, which Tesla just scrapped in October when it made the call to go completely with Tesla Vision. At that time, Tesla said in a statement: With today's software, this approach gives Autopilot high-definition spatial positioning, longer range visibility and the ability to identify and differentiate between objects. As with many Tesla features, our occupancy network will continue to improve rapidly over time.

There has also been a lot of speculation about HW4, where a high-resolution radar is believed to be part of the full self-driving sensor suite. HW4 goes as far back as the 2021 A.I. Day when Elon Musk said a new FSD computer would come out with the Cybertruck. This upgrade is now reportedly being developed by the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited (TSMC). It is expected to be much more powerful than the current hardware by as much as four times.

Elon has also previously commented on HD radar, saying "A very high-resolution radar would be better than pure vision, but such a radar does not exist. I mean vision with high-res radar would be better than pure vision."

An unidentified part, closely resembling a new radar was found on Tesla's Parts Catalog back in September by @GreenTheOnly. This mysterious item was marked but suspiciously not given a name, a part number or a description. However, given Green's experience with the inner workings of these vehicles, Green believes it is a new Tesla radar. In a follow-up tweet, he doubled down on his stance, saying the part matches the high-resolution radar Tesla registered with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission in June.

Fans recently spotted multiple Model 3 vehicles that had parts of the front and rear of the vehicle covered up. If Tesla is planning to add HD radar or change some of the vehicle's sensor suite, these vehicles may be testing exactly this.

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