Elon Musk has indicated that Tesla will be utilizing WiFi integration to assist drivers in opening their smart garage doors. Automatic garage door opening is available through Homelink. However, some garage doors are not compatible with Homelink and instead use an internet connection through WiFi to operate. The newly requested feature from a Twitter follower of Musk would use the internet instead of Homelink’s radio frequency-based software.
Ryan Knapp, a follower of Musk on Twitter, asked if the CEO could add an icon for a WiFi garage door opening feature to Tesla’s infotainment system. This would allow owners to enter their garages using the internet, even without the use of Homelink. “Elon, any way we could get a WiFi garage door opening icon. For users that do not have Homelink and do have a WiFi enable garage door, this would be a very useful feature,” Knapp asked Musk, who clarified that the feature is coming soon.
Homelink can control up to three devices, like gates, lights, garage doors, and security systems. It operates on radio frequencies and not an internet connection, which allows for the automatic opening or powering up of these systems.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 7, 2020
Currently, Homelink is available for use with 99% of garage door openers, according to its website. The feature is easily programmed with any of Tesla’s vehicles. However, if a garage door opener is not compatible with Homelink, then other non-integrated options must be used. WiFi capable garage doors are one of the available alternatives.
While WiFi capable garage openers are convenient, many of them require a smartphone application for correct and valid operation. The use of a cell phone can be distracting and is not as convenient as Homelink, which has an “Auto-Open” feature that can be set to a varying number of distances.
The new WiFi integrated opening system also alleviates the need to carry bulky garage door openers that can be lost or stolen, or even the need to pull out a smartphone to open the garage door. There are instances where this could be troublesome, especially if the phone runs out of batteries, and charging options are not available within a vehicle.
The integration of WiFi garage door opening capabilities in a Tesla could make life easier for drivers. Some owners already have garage door openers installed that utilize WiFi but are not Homelink compatible. This feature will give those owners the ease of access to open their garages without having to invest in a new, Homelink-compatible system.
Elon Musk’s idea of a “smart home” development was reiterated in late March, as the CEO stated he would love to develop a home HVAC system that uses HEPA filters for clean air and quiet and efficient technologies to reduce energy usage. The development of the WiFi-based garage door opener could add to the Smart Home idea, as it would allow more owners of the company’s vehicles to enter automatic garages without having to change to systems that are compatible with Homelink.
Once again, the advantages of Tesla’s Over-the-Air updates are evident, as improvements that real owners want to see can be easily installed on the company’s vehicle, most of the time at no cost.