Tesla adds new features to Sentry Mode with update 2022.44.2

By Nuno Cristovao
Tesla is adding improvements to Sentry Mode
Tesla is adding improvements to Sentry Mode
Not a Tesla App

Starting with update 2022.44.2, Tesla is making improvements to its popular Sentry Mode feature.

Sentry Mode, Tesla's camera-based car alarm and surveillance system, allows the vehicle to detect potential threats near the vehicle.

When Sentry Mode is enabled it records from four different cameras when the vehicle detects someone near the vehicle or an intrusion.

Although the feature is fantastic and has caught many situations when damage has been done to the vehicle, it can also lead to dozens of recordings when there is no threat at all. This is especially true if its raining, which can trigger Sentry Mode events, or if the vehicle is parked on a busy street with a lot of foot traffic.

With update 2022.44.2 Tesla is introducing two new features to Sentry Mode in some markets. Depending on your region, you'll either get the ability to disable camera-based detection or the ability to disable camera-based detection and the ability to adjust the length of each clip.

Camera-Based Detection

The first is the ability to turn off camera-based detection so that Sentry Mode will only save recordings that are triggered by intrusion, such as a glass breaking, a door opening, or the vehicle's tilt sensor being triggered (only available in some markets).

Turning off Sentry Mode recording when the cameras detect someone near the vehicle will greatly reduce the number of recordings, however, it could also lead to some threats going undetected.

Sentry Mode Clip Length

Tesla is adding improvements to Sentry Mode
Tesla is adding improvements to Sentry Mode
Not a Tesla App

The second new feature of Sentry Mode is the ability to adjust the length of a recorded event. Once a potential threat is detected, Sentry Mode will record for the next several minutes unless additional threats are detected. The number of minutes that Sentry Mode records after a threat has been static up until now. With 2022.44.2, you'll now be able to adjust the length of each Sentry Mode clip.

This feature is currently limited to many parts of Europe. Tesla's release notes for those receiving both Sentry Mode improvements read as follows:

Sentry Mode now allows for even greater customization, including:

- Camera-Based Detection, which allows users to disable use of cameras to detect threats.

- Sentry Mode Clip Length, which allows users to specify the length of the clip when a potential threat is detected.To adjust these Sentry Mode settings, tap Controls > Safety > Sentry Mode.

Other Improvement Coming?

Two other Sentry Mode features have been rumored in the past when Elon Musk responded to users on Twitter.

While there is no guarantee that these features will be implemented, in general, it does show that Elon Musk thinks they're a good idea and he'll likely share them with the team. The outcome of whether these features get added largely depends on the feasibility of implementing such features, Tesla's roadmap, and the effort required to develop them.

In 2020, Elon said that Tesla would allow users to adjust the sensitivity of Sentry Mode, which sounds like a great enhancement. Hopefully, that's a feature that Tesla is still considering or is actively developing.

Also in 2020, Elon replied to a user on Twitter suggesting that Tesla would allow an 'incognito' Sentry Mode. The goal is to not let perpetrators know that they're being recorded, although there could be potential legal ramifications to adding such a feature.

In update 2022.24 Tesla added the ability to disable Sentry Mode sounds when an intrusion is detected. This could have been Tesla's compromise when trying to create an incognito mode. Although the car will no longer make any audible noise, it will still flash its lights and display the Sentry Mode logo on the screen letting individuals know that they're being recorded.

Tesla recently added Sentry Mode support in Israel and expanded the countries where Sentry Mode Live Access is available. The feature is now available to users in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea and Singapore.

Sentry Mode has seen several enhancements since its introduction. With update 2022.40 Tesla now allows you to use Sentry Mode and Dog Mode together in various markets.

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Uber Now Uses Tesla API Data To Show a Range-Based Trip Planner

By Kevin Armstrong
Uber now has access to Tesla vehicle data that allows it to limit trips within range
Uber now has access to Tesla vehicle data that allows it to limit trips within range

In a monumental move towards the future of ridesharing, Tesla and Uber have unveiled a new feature — a range-based trip planner. This integration allows Tesla drivers to connect their vehicles to the Uber app and schedule rides based on the remaining battery charge of their electric vehicles. This innovation is set to redefine the experience of both drivers and passengers in the ridesharing space.

Bridging Tesla and Uber: The New Age of Ridesharing

First observed by Tesla enthusiast and former Uber driver Sofiaan, this range-based planner enables Tesla owners to accept rides in the Uber app based on their vehicle's current charge. The feature is activated only when users permit it, and once enabled, it assigns rides that can be comfortably completed with the existing battery level, leaving a small buffer to reach a Supercharger.

While introducing this feature marks an exciting leap in integrating electric vehicles into the ridesharing world, it has raised some eyebrows over privacy and data concerns. The new feature requires drivers to allow Uber access to their vehicle's data through the Tesla API. While it may cause some apprehension, this innovation is a significant aid for drivers who may be unsure about their Tesla's range or those experiencing range anxiety.

The Driver's Perspective: The Challenge of Balancing Charge and Availability

Driving for Uber or Lyft with an EV can be challenging. Rideshare drivers need to balance the need to recharge their vehicles with the necessity to remain available for passenger pick-ups. This new range-based planner alleviates some of this stress by intelligently allocating rides based on the remaining battery life. Such a feature could be particularly advantageous for those operating in areas with limited fast-charging infrastructure.

This range-based planner promises to improve the rideshare experience for Tesla drivers. With it, drivers will only be offered rides they can complete with their existing charge. This eliminates the dilemma of declining rides due to insufficient battery life, which could result in a penalty from Uber.

Ridesharing and the Future of Autonomous Vehicles

As we look toward the future, this development prompts larger questions about the ridesharing landscape and the advent of autonomous vehicles. Companies like Tesla, Uber, and Lyft, along with emerging players such as Waymo, Cruise, and Ford's new autonomy division, continue to innovate and compete. With the ongoing shifts towards electric and autonomous vehicles, these new technologies and collaborations will play an essential role in shaping the future of transportation.

This initiative by Tesla and Uber is a vital step toward integrating electric vehicles into the mainstream. As we anticipate the further transformation of ridesharing services, one thing remains clear — the ride toward green transportation is accelerating, and Tesla and Uber are at the forefront of this revolution.

An Early Look at Tesla's 2023.20 Update and Its Features

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla is introducing the ability to track your tire mileage in update 2023.20
Tesla is introducing the ability to track your tire mileage in update 2023.20

Preparations are underway for Tesla's next software update, version 2023.20. Although currently in testing, this update has been drawing attention since it was first noticed last week. Considering Tesla's 2023.12 update brought numerous new features, it appears this next may be smaller. However, we now have our first look at some of the features included in Tesla's 2023.20 update.

Ability to Track Tire Mileage

A noteworthy improvement under the upcoming update pertains to tire service tracking. Post-update, vehicle owners can track how many miles have been driven since their last tire service. This feature can prove valuable for monitoring mileage since your last tire rotation, changing to new tires, or switching between season-specific tires.

You or your service center will need to manually reset the counter each time your tires are serviced. You can view the mileage traveled or reset your counter by navigating to Controls > Service.

The official release notes state:

Go to Controls > Service to see how many miles it's been since your last tire service.

When you get your tires rotated, replaced, or swapped, tap 'Reset' to reset the counter.

Furthering Global Reach: Text Size Adjustment

Another feature gaining more ground is text size adjustment. While 'Text Size' was introduced in the 2023.12 update, the ability to adjust the size of the text in the vehicle's UI was limited to select languages. The feature has now been extended to all languages supported by Tesla. This expansion affirms Tesla's commitment to accessibility for its global user base, ensuring a seamless experience across different regions and languages.

While the Text Size feature in update 2023.12 only applied to the Model 3 and Model Y, it's not clear whether update 2023.20 also introduces the feature to the Model S and Model X. Based on Tesla's feature release history, this feature will likely apply to at least the redesigned Model S and Model X in the futre, but it's not immediately clear whether that is happening with this update.

The release notes for 2023.20 state:

Large text size feature is now available in all supported languages.

To update your settings, go to Controls > Display > Text Size.

Release Date

Although Tesla does not provide release dates for upcoming software updates, we may see update 2023.20 start rolling out in the next week or two. This timing can change if Tesla uncovers issues that need to be addressed before a public release.

2023.12 Update: A Look Back

As we anticipate the rollout of 2023.20, it's worth reflecting on the last major update - 2023.12.1. This update significantly enriched Tesla's features, particularly for Model 3 and Model Y. One standout was steering wheel customization. A long press on the left scroll button revealed a host of adjustable settings and functions.

Moreover, introducing the new search function facilitated more accessible access to controls and settings, along with points of interest that included photos and reviews. The ability to adjust wipers using the steering wheel scroll wheel emerged as a valuable, undocumented feature.

Perhaps one of the most user-friendly updates was the option of Standard or Large text sizes for the touchscreen display, which now applies to all languages under the 2023.20 update.

Other improvements included optional gear chimes for Model 3/Y, the transition of Tesla's Spotify player to a web-based format, enhanced phone call controls, and vision-based speed assist feature expansion. Tesla also broadened Zoom availability to more countries, added writing support for legacy Model S and Model X in China, and continued to make user interface enhancements.

While this is an early look at the upcoming features update 2023.20, it provides a glimpse into Tesla's continuing pursuit of improving user experience and convenience. There may be additional features in this update that are not listed here since not all Tesla features are available for every vehicle or region.

As we wait for the public release, it's evident that Tesla continues to push boundaries in its software development, setting high standards in the electric vehicle market.

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Although we share official Tesla release notes, we are not affiliated with Tesla Motors. We are Tesla fans and supporters.

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