Science

Tesla will disable the ability to play when the car is in motion

Tesla will update its software to prevent drivers from playing video games on the car’s system while the car is in motion, the U.S. Highway Safety Agency (NHTSA) said on Thursday, opening an investigation.

• See also: United States: research on the possibility of playing behind the wheel of a Tesla

• To read also: Fatal accident with a Tesla in Paris: the driver accused of involuntary manslaughter

• Also read: Elon Musk named Personality of the Year by Time magazine

“After opening a preliminary evaluation of Tesla’s Passenger Play, Tesla informed the agency that it was changing the functionality,” an NHTSA spokesperson said in an email to the company. AFP.

“In a new software update, ‘Passenger Play’ will now be locked and unusable when the vehicle is in motion,” he added.

The agency had announced the day before that it had opened a security investigation into this matter involving about 580,000 Tesla.

The affected models are Model 3, S, X and Y, equipped with the “Passenger Play” functionality, which allows you to play video games even when the car is in motion.

This option is likely to “distract the driver and increase the risk of an accident,” the NHTSA warned.

The agency specifies that the ability to play while driving has only been offered since December 2020 on equipped models.

Previously, the “Passenger Play” function was only available when the car was stationary.

In early December, the New York Times revealed that an update to this feature made it possible to play three games, including solitaire, while driving.

However, the screen shows a warning to clarify that only passengers can play when the car is in motion.

The NHTSA investigation was opened after receiving a complaint from a driver.

“How is it that a manufacturer can show videos that clearly obstruct the focus and occupy two thirds of the screen that the driver needs to have all the information about his vehicle?”, Perhaps it reads in the complaint filed by a resident of the lake Oswego. in Oregon.

Distracted driving caused 3,142 deaths in the United States in 2019, according to the NHTSA.

Tesla is already in the agency’s crosshairs for its controversial driver assistance system called “autopilot.”

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