Tesla Model 3 and Model Y are confirmed to have a USB 3.0 compatible port for improved Sentry Mode and Dashcam video quality.
One of the newest features of the 2021 Model 3 and updated Model Y builds was a new USB slot in the glove box. This addition was included by Tesla to allow owners to store their USB devices, which contain Sentry Mode and Dashcam footage, more securely.
The glove box’s upgraded slots were uncovered in a schematic by Tesla hacker @greentheonly, who showed that the concealed ports were, in fact, USB 3.0 compatible. This port did not replace any of the ports located in and on the outside of the center console, which still operate with USB 2.0 despite using the USB-C’s high-speed capabilities that enable fast-charging.
The advantages of using USB 3.0 in the glove box coincide with the port’s purpose, which is to record Sentry Mode and Dashcam footage. The USB 3.0 port will enable faster bitrates for recording, enabling higher quality Sentry Mode and Dashcam videos, which could provide greater detail in the event of an act of vandalism or an accident.
The high-speed capable USB 3.0 also opens the door for other features that Tesla has yet to roll out. One of these is the possibility of Tesla allowing owners to livestream their videos to the Tesla Smartphone application. Using a USB 3.0 will enhance the bitrate of this livestreaming and enable higher-quality Sentry Mode and Dashcam videos to be viewed later on.
The addition of the USB port in the glove box was a small but significant change that Tesla added with the 2021 Model 3 and Model Y. Tesla also added a glovebox PIN with Software Update 2020.40.0.4 to increase the security of the USB thumb drive that is included with the purchase of a new Model 3 or Model Y.