Tesla’s Sentry Mode is a feature that has the car monitor its surroundings and record footage if anyone or anything comes too close to your car.
A new feature that came with the software update 2021.36.8 expands on this, allowing users to remotely see through Tesla’s cameras when in Sentry Mode from their Tesla iOS app.
“You can now remotely view your car’s surroundings when parked to confirm the safety of your environment before returning to your car. Live Camera is end-to-end encrypted and cannot be accessed by Tesla. To enable or disable tap Controls > Safety & Security,” the release notes for the feature say.
Being able to check if the car’s surroundings are safe before getting to the car is pretty neat, but the feature is just an overall cool way to survey what’s happening in a certain area, essentially turning your Tesla into a mobile security camera with remote access.
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It gets better, though. Tesla CEO Elon Musk says you can use the feature to talk through the car speaker, which he claims is “great for practical jokes.” We are envisioning a scenario in which several Tesla owners are chatting with each other in this way in a parking lot, and it’s probably the most dystopian scene we could ever imagine.
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The feature currently only works on iOS (you’ll need Tesla mobile app version 4.21 or higher), and requires Tesla’s Premium Connectivity feature, which gives Tesla owners high bandwidth internet for $10 a month.