Tesla mobile app update adds widget quick controls, and a highly requested feature behind the scenes [Update]

After many years without an update, Tesla released a fresh design for their mobile app in August. Since then two updates have been pushed out in as many months.

Tesla has deployed a third new version to the iOS App Store tonight, V4.2.0. The release notes detail one of the major changes, but hidden in the source code is a much bigger and highly requested feature that hints it is coming soon.

Widget Quick Controls

Tesla has added quick controls to the larger iOS widget that was first introduced with the new design. Previously the widget only showed displayed a few pieces information, like battery state of charge and current location, but users had to open the app to access any controls.

Now you can lock/unlock, turn on/off HVAC, access charging, and open the frunk directly from the widget. Due to size limitations, these controls are not available on the smaller widget.

quick controls
Image via Alpha_Stream

Remote Camera Viewing

While the addition of quick controls is nice, what is hidden behind the scenes is much bigger. After years of requests from owners, Tesla appears to be close to finally introducing the ability to watch video from your Tesla on your mobile device.

Evidence of this new feature was discovered by Drive Tesla reader Alpha_Stream, who found several new images within the app. The images are labeled by the camera view (e.g., camera_front_selected), and shows the typical image used by Tesla to show the viewable area of a camera.

There is a large white space at the bottom of the image, suggesting another image of the car will be overlayed to visually display which camera has been selected.

camera front
Image via Alpha_Stream

UPDATE 11:12pm PST: Just as we suspected, this is what the view will look like in the app. It has also been confirmed this new feature will come with vehicle software update 2021.40 (via @teslascope)

in app view
Image via @teslascope

Another feature hidden in the source code appears to be the ability to save a clip after watching it. It is unclear if the clip will be saved directly to your mobile device, or if it will be saved to the vehicle’s USB storage.

It is also unclear from the code if this will only enable owners to view Sentry Mode footage, or if they will be able to view a livestream from any of the vehicle’s cameras.

UPDATE 9:33pm PST: Teslascope has also found more evidence that this will indeed be livestreaming, in addition to viewing previously saved clips.

They were also able to discover that you will soon be able to talk into your mobile phone and project your voice over the external speaker (PWS).

UPDATE 9:38pm PST: Based on a deeper dive into the code, we have discovered that there appears to be daily data limits for this remote viewing. Owners will have the ability to disable livestreaming. Additionally, all doors must be closed and no one in the vehicle for the feature to work.

UPDATE 9:42pm PST: There is a lot in this app update! When Tesla releases vehicle software version 2021.40, in-car purchases will also be enabled. Evidence of this feature was first discovered this summer.

Based on previous evidence discovered back in December 2020, it could be livestreaming, but would be limited only to the same cameras Sentry Mode uses (e.g., no b-pillar camera access).

Livestream video from your Tesla to your mobile app coming soon

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