As a passionate Tesla driver, I know quite a bit about the user experience of the on-board computer. And for some time now, we at Mindnow have been looking at app programming methods for a Tesla App Store.
Of course, there is already a 3rd party API. But the currently available API and a future Software Development Kit (SDK) for Tesla represent two completely different approaches to developing apps for Tesla vehicles.
As of today: 3rd party API on external servers.
With the currently available 3rd party API, we can already create applications today that communicate with the vehicles over the internet. The API allows development teams like us to access certain vehicle data and control some features remotely.
Typical applications include preheating the car, checking the charge level, or locating the vehicle's location. This API is powerful, but it requires a constant internet connection and the applications do not run on Tesla's own, but on external servers or devices.
App development for the Tesla on-board computer with Tesla App Store
A future SDK, on the other hand, will enable apps that run directly on the Tesla's on-board computer. With the upcoming release of Tesla's 3rd party app store, the possibilities for developing your own Tesla app or Tesla infotainment system will be endless.
In the future, apps will have direct access to the vehicle's sensors, infotainment system and other hardware elements. This will then allow them to be fully integrated into the vehicle, far beyond what is possible with the current 3rd party API.
Tesla app integration with vehicle sensors
As the Tesla's various sensors become accessible to developers, I can envision apps that interact with the car's cameras, GPS and other built-in systems. I'm thinking of apps with advanced navigation features, advanced diagnostics, a personalized driving experience, safety enhancements and more. So many opportunities are emerging to further improve a seamless user experience for Tesla drivers with new apps.
But as an innovative software company, we at Mindnow aren't just thinking about the possibilities, we're also developing strategies to make them a reality. Here are a few use cases that I can very well imagine implementing with my team:
Our ideas for Tesla apps
Augmented Reality Navigation: We can imagine an app that uses Tesla's GPS and camera systems to add an augmented reality (AR) overlay to the vehicle's navigation system. This AR system would highlight landmarks, display route guidance in real-time, and point out potential parking spots.
Advanced diagnostic tools: Using sensor data, we could develop an app that provides detailed insights into the vehicle's performance and maintenance needs, potentially identifying issues before they become problems.
Improved safety: Integration with Tesla's camera and sensor systems would enable an app that improves the vehicle's safety features. For example, this app would warn of blind spots or objects or obstacles in the path of travel.
Great opportunities for Swisscharge
Tesla's app store for third-party providers indeed also holds great opportunities for companies. A special Tesla app for Swisscharge, the Swiss EV charging network, would completely redefine the charging of Tesla electric vehicles, for example.
Find charging stations: An intuitive map showing all available Swisscharge charging stations throughout Switzerland would make it easy to find and navigate to the nearest charging station.
Automated charging: If an app is running natively on the Tesla, the charging process can also be automated. Upon reaching a Swisscharge station, the car would automatically check in and begin charging as soon as it was plugged in. Once charging was complete, the Tesla would automatically check out. All this without any external devices or manual controls!
Effortless payment: By integrating user accounts into the app, customers could save their payment method to automatically pay for charging when they check out.
The potential for such a customized Tesla app is enormous and would make Swisscharge even more convenient and user-friendly for Tesla drivers.
Pioneering Tesla app development.
The apps in Tesla vehicles are based on web technologies such as React - a framework our agency is very familiar with. We are prepared to exploit the full potential of this new platform and develop Tesla-compatible apps.
Mindnow is ready for Tesla app development:
Top team of developers, App development is our specialty, Knowledge of Tesla's API documentation and app developer kit, Knowledge of Tesla's app interface and on-board computer specifications
In fact, with our agency, we not only want to be part of the Tesla app development community, but we are ready to lead it and develop revolutionary applications. We believe in the potential of this new platform and are following Tesla's development very closely.
The future of Tesla's 3rd party app store is full of exciting opportunities to enhance the Tesla driving experience and we look forward to being part of this journey. We can't wait to literally put our innovative ideas on the road and continue to push the boundaries of what's possible in automotive technology.