At a recent reception in Munich, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk gave out enough sound bytes to keep journalists happy for a month.
Musk expressed his skepticism regarding hydrogen fuel cell cars (his language wasn’t so diplomatic), but that wasn’t the only highlight of the speech.
In addition to laying out Tesla’s plans for Europe, Musk discussed possible changes to the Model S electric car’s onboard operating system.
According to Engadget, Musk hopes to open the car’s infotainment system to third-party apps by the end of 2014.
That means Tesla drivers may soon have a menu of apps to choose from. Other carmakers, like Ford and Toyota, have developed “app suites” that allow drivers to access certain third-party apps through their cars’ infotainment system, making the dashboard more like a mobile device.
Musk did not explain how apps would be integrated into the Model S’ infotainment system, only saying that Tesla is “considering” an Android emulator. The Model S uses a Linux operating system.
As Tesla upgrades its software, the Model S is also expected to get Google Chrome. Sorry, Firefox users.
Adding Chrome and app support will help Tesla maintain its credibility with tech-savvy buyers.
Tesla may be very different from other car companies, but it’s been part of the movement to make cars more like smartphones since Day One. One look at the Model S’ 17-inch center stack touch screen, and it’s apparent that Tesla expects its customers to do more with their cars than just drive them.