Soon, You Won’t Be Able to Play Video Games While Driving Your Tesla

That doesn't sound like a bad thing, honestly

A Tesla electric vehicle charging pod point at Trentham Estate on December 10, 2021 in Stoke on Trent, England.
Nathan Stirk/Getty Images

Numerous studies have stressed the dangers of distracted driving, which can lead to catastrophic outcomes for drivers, passengers and pedestrians alike. Werner Herzog even made a documentary about it! With all of the data that exists about the dangers of texting and driving, you’d think that something even more involving — like, say, playing video games — would be out of the question. You’d think so, anyway.

Earlier this month brought news that the NHTSA was looking into a feature on Teslas which allowed drivers to play video games on their car’s console while the car was in motion. A New York Times report on the feature quoted a Model 3 owner who said, “To me, it just seems inherently dangerous.” It seems fair to say that he wasn’t alone in feeling this way — it’s hard not to have a visceral What were they thinking? reaction upon hearing about this feature.

Thankfully, Tesla has responded to the criticism. A new report at The Guardian reveals that Tesla is releasing a software update which disables the ability to play video games while cars are in motion. The NHTSA is continuing an investigation of the feature as well.

This feature is called “Passenger Play,” and while the loss of it might sadden regular Tesla passengers who enjoy video games on the dashboard from the passenger seat, it’s also not clear that anyone who meets this description actually exists. Do passengers in cars play video games? Sure — but odds are good that they’ll be able to do so on a smartphone without too much trouble, and without putting drivers at risk.

Win the Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix Experience

Want the F1 experience of a lifetime? Here’s your chance to win tickets to see Turn 18 Grandstand, one of Ultimate Formula 1® Miami Grand Prix’s most premier grandstands!