Tesla May Let Users Mirror Smartphone Apps To Their Infotainment Screen Soon


After years of mulling about the release of its own software development kit, Tesla Motors appears to be taking the safer and surer route to supporting apps on its infotainment systems, as CEO Elon Musk informed the audience at an event held in Hong Kong on Tuesday.

Third-party developers might get disappointed because they can't build apps that can be integrated directly into Tesla electric vehicles. Doing so, however, could install new backdoors into the EVs, which have already been hacked into before as sort of a proof of concept -- that hack was local, requiring physical access to the targeted vehicle.

So instead of worrying over moderating app permission, Tesla Motors its considering enabling users to project apps from their mobile devices. The path to app projection could see Tesla Motors build in support for Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto -- both platforms support app projection.

"As we have sort of thought about it more, the logical thing to do from an app standpoint is to maybe allow apps on your iPhone or Android to project onto the center display, as opposed to trying to create a new app ecosystem," said Musk. "So that is probably going to be our focus in the future to enable you to project apps from your phone to the center screen."

It just may not be worth the trade-off at the point, the additional security concerns and regulatory approval in exchange for more apps for its EVs. Tesla Motors is still working to get governments to accept its autopilot feature.

While in Hong Kong, where autopilot is only partially released, Musk said he would try to convince the government there to consider sanctioning the launch of the feature.

"We'll be meeting with the government tomorrow -- hopefully," said Musk. "We are going to have some conversations and hopefully they will consider allowing us to release Autopilot in Hong Kong. I'm cautiously optimistic it'll be a good meeting tomorrow."

Check out Tesla Motors' video for the Hong Kong event.

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