The first in-action look at Tesla’s upcoming Dashcam Viewer shows how easy and convenient it is to watch recorded video clips directly from inside the car.
The newly added viewer allows drivers to view recorded Sentry Mode or driving videos captured from the vehicle’s onboard cameras in four different angles. Viewing different angles is as simple as touching any of the camera perspectives available on each corner of the dash screen while using the viewer. As first demonstrated by Tesla hacker @greentheonly, all four recorded camera angles are playable in real-time in a synchronized fashion, giving the viewer a full 360-degree view of what surrounds their vehicle at all times.
The vehicle must be in the PARK setting to access the viewer. A camera icon will be available on the dash screen. Touching the icon will start the player and bring up a list of both Sentry Mode footage and Dashcam clips. This allows owners to view clips within the vehicle, an improvement from the past system of watching videos recorded by the car. The old system was comprised of either watching the clips that were stored on a USB drive or internal hard drive on a computer or buying third party products that allowed for viewing on a smartphone.
Tesla released the Dashcam viewer to members of the Early Access Program on April 3. Tesla owners have requested the feature for some time. Still, after @TeslaOwnersSV contacted Musk on Twitter in March 2020, the Tesla CEO stated he would work with his team to determine the likelihood of a viewer being available to owners.
The release notes for Tesla’s Dashcam Viewer feature state:
Watch saved Dashcam clips or Sentry Mode events from the touchscreen with the Dashcam Viewer. To launch, tap the Dashcam icon in the status bar and select “Launch Viewer” while the vehicle is in PARK. If the vehicle is in DRIVE, you will continue to save a clip by tapping the icon.
To view saved clips and events stored on your USB drive, tap the Menu icon in the upper left corner of the viewer. Each video is organized by location, date and thumbnail for easy access. For additional filtering options, tap the “Dashcam” or “Sentry” tabs.
Select a clip or event to play the corresponding video. To select video from a particular camera, tap the associated thumbnail marked Front, Rear, Left or Right. Play, pause, or scroll by using the video controls at the bottom of the player. To delete a video, tap the trash icon in the bottom right corner of the video player.
The addition of the in-car viewer allows owners to view clips quickly and effectively in the instance of an accident or act of vandalism. After accidents happen, police are required to draft a report to determine the driver that was at fault. The Dashcam viewer could help accurately solve these cases, as personal descriptions of what occurred in an accident are usually flawed. Nevertheless, the addition of the feature could save drivers hundreds of dollars in wrongly-given tickets and increased insurance prices.