New features in the Tesla app with update 2021.36

By Nuno Cristovao

Tesla recently completely redesigned their iPhone and Android apps. Just a couple weeks after releasing version 4.0, Tesla released an update that included new features such as the ability to change scheduled charging, adjust your charge departure time and more.

Most of these features require your Tesla to have update 2021.36 or later. At the time the app was released, 2021.36 had yet to be available. Software update 2021.36 has now started rolling out to individuals and we now have our first look at the new features in the Tesla app.

The new Tesla app lets you adjust scheduled and departure charging options with update 2021.36

Scheduled Charging

The ability to charge your car at a given time, or to have it charged by a certain time has been available in the car for a while now, but we'll now have the ability to schedule it directly from the app.

There's a new Schedule category that will allow you to adjust departure time and scheduled time charging.

Once you tap into the Schedule category, you'll be able to pick whether you want departure time charging, or scheduled time charging.

Tesla's wording here hasn't always been clear, but departure charging lets your car pick when to start charging, and you just let it know when you want it to be completed. This has the added benefit that your battery will be warmer when you're ready to leave. It's especially useful in winter climates.

Scheduled charging is essentially the opposite of departure charging. You pick the time you'd like your vehicle to start charging and it'll continue charging until it reaches your set charge level, such as 80%.

It's interesting that Tesla puts charging options under a ‘Schedule' category instead of ‘Charging'. It leaves the door open for other scheduling options. The obvious one is the ability to schedule your climate in the car, but there could be others such as the ability to schedule Sentry Mode.

I'd personally love for Tesla to include a Nest-like scheduling option that would let you pick the days of the week and temperature when you'd like your climate turned on.

Bioweapon Defense Mode

Ability to turn on Bioweapon Defense Mode in the new Tesla app with 2021.36

If your car is equipped with Bioweapon Defense Mode, you'll now be able to turn it on directly in the app. You'll slide up a drawer in the Climate section of the app which will give you the ability to turn on Defrost or Bioweapon Defense Mode.

Adjust Charge Amps

The new Tesla app gives you the ability to adjust charge amps with 2021.36

The last improvement that comes to the app with update 2021.36 is the ability to change your charging amps while the vehicle is charging. A new button appears underneath the charge limit slider that will let you select the amps used.

The 4.0 release of the Tesla app had a similar feature set to the previous app it replaced, but it looks like Tesla has plans to continue adding new features now.

In software development there's often an MVP (Minimum viable product) that the product team is willing to release with. In this case the MVP appears to have been the features that were available in the previous app. Now that Tesla has released the new app they can focus on adding new features that they may not have had time prior to release.

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Elon Musk's Visit to China: Conversations About Giga Shanghai, Battery Supply and Potentially FSD Beta

By Kevin Armstrong
Elon Musk visits China to talk to officials
Elon Musk visits China to talk to officials

In a move that potentially signals a brighter horizon for Tesla Inc, CEO Elon Musk has embarked on a landmark visit to China. Engaging with key officials and ministries, this significant step might lay a robust foundation for the company's future in the world's largest electric vehicle market.

Deepening Ties with China's Ministries

Elon Musk's tour of China started with meetings at the commerce and industry ministries. His interaction with officials from these important government bodies, which exercise regulatory oversight of the automotive industry, signifies the deepening of ties between Tesla and China's government. This potential easing of pathways for Tesla's ambitious growth plans in China indicates an increasingly positive relationship with these integral regulatory bodies.

Boosting Production Capacity

This visit is strategic, coming at a time when Tesla's Shanghai Gigafactory, a vital cog in Tesla's global manufacturing wheel, is facing challenges in scaling its production capacity. This is occurring amid intensifying competition from Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers. Last year, the factory produced over 700,000 Model Y and Model 3 vehicles, contributing more than half of Tesla's global output. Musk's engagement with Chinese officials could pave the way for smoother expansion plans, thereby fortifying Tesla's position in the global EV landscape.

Advancing Autonomous Driving Features

Tesla's Full Self-Driving features, currently available in the US and Canada as part of the FSD Beta software, is a major focal point for investors during Musk's visit. Securing clearance from Chinese regulators for these features could give Tesla a competitive edge. It could enhance the company's appeal to the tech-savvy Chinese consumer base, spurring further adoption of Tesla's vehicles.

Strengthening Partnerships with Local Suppliers

Musk's interaction with Zeng Yuqun, the chairman of CATL, a Chinese battery giant and a key supplier for Tesla, underscores another significant aspect of his visit. Strengthening this vital partnership could fortify Tesla's supply chain resilience and bolster its production capabilities.

The Impact of Musk's Visit on Tesla's Future in China

Musk's visit signals a new era of strengthened relations between Tesla and the Chinese government. His commitment to understanding and engaging with China's unique market dynamics shows a determination to cement Tesla's presence in the country. By fostering these important relationships, Musk is making strides toward securing a stable and prosperous future for Tesla in China.

Elon Musk's visit to China promises to be a significant milestone for Tesla. By fostering relationships with Chinese officials and industry partners, he's setting the stage for Tesla's growth in China's booming EV market. With an increasingly cooperative relationship with regulatory bodies, a robust supply chain, and the potential to bring cutting-edge technology to consumers, Tesla is poised for success.

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.

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Take a look at features that Elon Musk has said will be coming soon.


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