Tesla Model S, Model X will feature smartphone keys soon, says Musk

In a recent Twitter update, Tesla CEO Elon Musk stated that Model S and Model X owners could soon access their electric cars through Bluetooth-enabled smartphone keys.

The feature was addressed on Twitter by Josh Cunningham, a Tesla enthusiast who recently purchased a Model S. In his tweet, John noted that it would be great if Tesla could roll out an update that would allow the Model S to be accessed through a phone key, just like the Model 3.

Responding to the Tesla enthusiast, Musk stated that the company would indeed be adding the Model 3-esque feature to the luxury sedan and SUV. According to Musk, all Model S and Model X, regardless of the date the vehicle was manufactured, could work without a key fob, provided that owners have a smartphone that can pair with the vehicles through Bluetooth. Musk noted, however, that signal strength must be optimal and owners must first activate the feature before the Model S/X phone key could work.

Tesla opted to forgo its iconic car-shaped key fobs for the Model 3, with the compact electric car using an authenticated phone key and an NFC-enabled key card instead. The Model 3 Owner’s manual describes the electric car’s smartphone key as such:

“Using your phone is the most convenient way to access your Model 3. As you approach, your phone’s Bluetooth signal is detected, and doors unlock when you press a door handle. Likewise, when you exit and walk away with the phone, doors automatically lock (provided the Walk Away Lock feature is turned on.”

Several new features for Tesla’s vehicles have been announced by Elon Musk on Twitter before they were rolled out to the company’s fleet. Earlier this week, we reported on the Model 3 receiving firmware update v8.1(2018.18.1), which gave the compact electric sedan the capability to automatically dim its high beams when oncoming traffic is detected.

The Model 3’s auto-dimming high beams were mentioned by Musk last March, when the CEO stated that the feature, which is standard for the Model S and Model X, will be introduced to the Model 3 as well. As of v8.1 (2018.18.1), Musk’s promise has come true.

Last month, Tesla Model S and Model X owners also received an update that introduced a revamped Navigation system. The new system, which is akin to popular third-party navigation app Waze, provides drivers with real-time traffic guidelines based on data from Tesla’s fleet and the company’s “partners.”

Just like the auto-dimming headlights of the Model 3, the Navigation overhaul for the Model S and Model X was mentioned by Elon Musk on Twitter before the update was rolled out. On March, Musk stated that the overhaul was “almost done.” A month after Musk’s tweet, Model S and Model X owners received the new Navigation system.

Tesla Model S, Model X will feature smartphone keys soon, says Musk
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