Tesla vehicles receive constant updates to improve functionality, add features, improve reliability and even add games. Teslas will also send you notifications on your phone when your car alarm goes off, if you left your car unlocked, or if the charge level is critically low.
What is Premium Connectivity?
All Teslas come standard with WiFi and cellular modems. When connecting to WiFi either through your home's network or through a hotspot, most features in your Tesla are free to use. However when utilizing your car's cellular connection some features are limited to Tesla's premium connectivity package.
Cost of Premium Connectivity?
Tesla's Premium Connectivity package currently costs $10/month per car in the US. Cars sold before June 30, 2018 include free premium connectivity.
As of February 2022, Tesla has also added a yearly plan for Premium Connectivity in the US. The price of the annual plan is $99/year. You can subscribe to the monthly or the yearly plan by using the Tesla app. In the Tesla app go to the Upgrades section and then tap Manage. If you currently subscribe to the monthly plan, you can also switch to yearly in this same section.
What is included for free, without Premium Connectivity?
The most important data features are included for free in your Tesla, such as phone notifications, software updates, updated navigation maps and even optimal navigation routing that takes live traffic into account.
What does Premium Connectivity include?
The features that require premium connectivity have mostly to do with entertainment while parked or driving. Keep in mind that all entertainment features are available to you if you're connected to WiFi or a hotspot.
Entertainment features that require premium connectivity include music streaming, such as Slacker and Spotify. It also includes video streaming services while parked such as Netflix, Disney+, YouTube and a few others. Keep in mind that some of those services still require a subscription. For example, YouTube is available for free, but Netflix requires a paid subscription. Tesla's premium connectivity simply lets you use the car's data connection to stream those services.
Additional services included in Premium Connectivity are:
Internet browser - Browse the web to look up restaurants, destinations or other information. It can be used by the passenger while driving.
Tesla's version of Karaoke which features hundreds of songs and displays the lyrics on the screen.
Satellite view maps -
This displays satellite imagery in your navigation instead of just the terrain view with streets.
Live traffic visualizations - Traffic visualizations will show you which roads are congested and where traffic jams are located.
Can I share my phone's data (hotspot) with my Tesla?
Yes, with software update 2021.24 and later, you can now choose to share your phone's data connection with your Tesla. It'll get you access to most of the features included with premium connectivity such as music streaming, internet browsing and you'll be able to use all of them while driving.
However there are two features that aren't available without Tesla's premium connectivity, even if you're using your phone as a hotspot. They include the live traffic visualization and the satellite imagery in maps.
Those two features aren't included when on WiFi or using a hotspot because they cost Tesla more than just the data to get them to you. Google provides Tesla both of those features for a fee. Tesla is simply including those fees they pay Google in their premium connectivity package price. So Tesla decides to not provide these features unless you're paying for the premium package.
A good view of all the displays available in a Model S
Tesla is a pioneer in the automotive industry, and one of the most defining features of its vehicles is the use of large touchscreens. These screens are a central hub for most vehicle functions, including music, vehicle settings, navigation, and more. Tesla's commitment to a minimalist and user-friendly design is evident through integrating these screens, which have become iconic in electric vehicles.
A comparison of the different size displays in Teslas
Not a Tesla App
2012-2020 Model S & Model X
Between 2012 and 2020, the Model S and Model X were equipped with vertical screens, which stood out due to their impressive size and orientation. These screens measured 17 inches diagonally and allowed intuitive control of the vehicles' various features.
In addition to the central touchscreen, both models featured an instrument cluster screen behind the steering wheel, displaying vital information such as speed, range, visualizations and charging status. The instrument cluster features a 12.3" screen with an 8:3 aspect ratio and a resolution of 1280 by 480.
2021-Present - Model S and Model X Screen Sizes
The Model S and Model X have a center display measuring 17 inches
In 2021, Tesla introduced a significant update to the Model S and Model X, replacing the vertical screens with horizontal ones. The new 17-inch screen boasts a 16:9.5 aspect ratio, providing users with an even more immersive experience. The display has a resolution of 2200 by 1300 pixels which is about 150 pixels per inch (PPI).
The instrument cluster remains present, ensuring drivers have easy access to crucial information at a glance. Additionally, a rear display measuring eight inches was introduced, which Tesla later updated in 2022 by reducing the bezels, resulting in a slightly larger screen size. Tesla also introduced the ability for the center display to tilt left and right.
The newer Model S and Model X has a rear display measuring over 8 inches
Model 3 & Model Y Screen Size
On the other hand, the Model 3 and Model Y take a different approach to screen design. Both models lack an instrument cluster, opting instead for a single, central 15.4-inch touchscreen with a 16:9 screen ratio. The display features a resolution of 1920 by 1200, which comes in just below 150 PPI. This minimalist approach further emphasizes Tesla's commitment to a clutter-free, user-friendly interface.
The interior of a Model 3 with a 15
The highly anticipated Cybertruck is expected to feature the most giant screen yet, with a whopping 18.5-inch horizontal screen without an instrument cluster. There are also plans for a rear screen, though the exact size remains unconfirmed. However, plenty of images of the Cybertruck appeared during Investor Day, and many observers believe the rear screen is the same as the Model S and Model X at around eight inches.
The Tesla Semi puts the driver between two 15-inch displays
Finally, the Tesla Semi, a big electric rig designed for long-haul transportation, features dual 15-inch screens located to the left and right of the driver. These screens replace the traditional instrument cluster, providing the driver vital information and access to various controls. However, there is no rear screen in the Semi, as it's not necessary for its intended use.
Tesla's commitment to innovation and user experience is exemplified by integrating large, intuitive touchscreens in their vehicles. From the early vertical screens in the Model S and Model X to the current horizontal screens and the upcoming Cybertruck, Tesla continues to push the boundaries of automotive design and technology, ensuring that their vehicles remain at the forefront of the electric vehicle revolution.
Tesla's Model Y is the world's best selling car in Q1 of 2023
The Tesla Model Y made a monumental leap in Q1 2023, emerging as the world's best-selling car. Not just the best-selling EV, or the best-selling SUV, but the world's best-selling vehicle, period.
According to industry analysts JATO Dynamics, this marks the first occasion in history where an EV has claimed this title. The growth trajectory of Model Y sales globally over recent years had hinted at this milestone, fulfilling Tesla's earlier predictions that demand could reach a million units per year.
JATO Dynamics' Revealing Analysis: Model Y Trumps Corolla
Data compiled by JATO Dynamics analyst Felipe Munoz reveals a compelling story. Model Y's Q1 sales reached 267,200, outperforming Toyota Corolla's 256,400 sales. The comparison becomes even more dramatic when considering other top contenders like Toyota's Hilux, RAV4, and Camry. Model Y's sales, largely driven by Tesla's significant price cuts, are escalating, while Corolla sales appear to be dwindling. This dynamic is particularly impressive considering the Model Y's introduction to the market a year later than the Corolla (2019 vs 2018).
The Legacy of the Toyota Corolla: A Reign Unchallenged Until Now
For decades, the Toyota Corolla has held an uncontested reign as the world's best-selling car, with its affordability, reliability, and universal availability contributing to its enduring popularity. Its 2018 iteration further consolidated this status, offering consumers a well-rounded package that catered to a wide variety of tastes and requirements across different markets.
The Corolla was indeed a global favorite, securing sales in practically every corner of the world, from North America and Europe to Asia. Its broad availability in multiple body styles — sedan, hatchback, and wagon — further expanded its appeal to a diverse customer base. Despite this formidable legacy, the emergence of the Model Y has marked a shift in consumer preferences. It heralds a new era in which electric vehicles can claim the top spot in global car sales.
The High Price Tag vs. Accessibility: Tesla's Strategic Moves
Tesla's ambitious projections regarding the Model Y have come to fruition, culminating in an average quarterly sales increase from last year's 189k to this year's Q1 figures. With this growth rate, Model Y is on track to exit 2023 with over 1 million sales. A feat previously only achieved by Toyota Corolla, which sold 1.12 million units in the previous year.
One may wonder how an EV with a price tag of approximately $40k (after credits) could outperform the more affordable Corolla, priced at $21k for a base model. Despite Model Y's higher cost, Tesla's strategic price cuts have widened its appeal, contributing significantly to its increased market share.
Elon Musk's prediction that the Model Y could become the world's best-selling car seems increasingly plausible. Given its current momentum and the growing demand for EVs, it's likely that Model Y will maintain its leading position, making Tesla's mark in the automotive industry even more indelible.
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