Have you ever gone to your Tesla and forgotten your phone and key card? Have you always wanted to quickly drive your Tesla around the corner without needing your iPhone? Well, now you can fully control your Tesla with the new one Watch app for Tesla – No key fob, key card or iPhone required.
Watch app for Tesla
The Watch App for Tesla started in 2020 as a fun secondary or even tertiary way to interact with and control your Tesla. Most Tesla owners either have their phone running the Tesla app to control their Tesla, or they use the key card to at least unlock and “start” the Tesla. Even if there are products like that Tesla ring and the Tesla keychain that can be used to unlock your Tesla, the creator of the Watch App for Tesla felt that these forms of interactivity were not enough. They decided to work on an Apple Watch app that would give you the same control as the Tesla app but from your wrist.
The original version of the Apple Watch Tesla app included the basics: unlock the car, lock the car, open the charge port, and view charge stats, and included some neat complications to add to your current watch faces.
Over time, as the app evolved, more controls and features were added: heated seats, car defrosting, lowering the windows, opening the doors, and more! But there was always a small problem: the WatchforTesla app used data connectivity to initiate these commands, meaning you needed an internet connection for these controls to run. Even if you had a strong Wi-Fi or 5G connection, there was always a few seconds of delay when trying to unlock the car or open the trunk.
The bluetooth update
To date, the biggest problem has been completely fixed and I fully recommend it Watch out for Tesla App for all current and future Tesla owners. With the 1.2.7 app update, the developer was able to enter the Apple Watch’s Bluetooth connectivity and it now works out of the box. The WatchforTesla app no longer has latency lag when using it to unlock the car, open the trunk, or raise the windows. It behaves like the native Tesla app, where it’s already pre-activated for you when you walk to the car.
Setup is very easy. Just go into your WatchforTesla settings and turn on “Enable Bluetooth Direct Vehicle Control”, the car will then detect a new key near the car. Then place your physical key card behind the Tesla’s cup holders, and then voila, you’re done! You can now use your Apple Watch as your only Tesla Key!
things to consider
Although WatchforTesla is extremely robust, there is a limitation on software updates. You must still use the native Tesla app to update the software in your car. In order for Proximity Unlock to work with Apple Watch, the Watch out for Tesla App must be open on your wrist to not work passively like the native Tesla app.
The only real requirement I’ve noticed is that you must have an Apple Watch capable of running the latest WatchOS 9 software. I personally use a 44mm Apple Watch Series 5 with Wi-Fi only and it works perfectly.
Take & Hands-On video by 9to5mac
For a one-time payment of $19.99, being able to use your Apple Watch as your Tesla key was a no-brainer for me. It gives you an extra backup in case your phone dies on you and now with the bluetooth update it works perfectly. If you own multiple Teslas, you can also manage all your vehicles through this app without having to buy them again.
So what do you think? Do you think using your Apple Watch as a key is beneficial or more of a gimmick? Sound off the comments below!
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