It’s not out yet, but ELEKS labs show us how the Tesla car app runs on the Apple Watch

Apple’s long-awaited Apple Watch isn’t for sale just yet, but people are of course curious as to how this new product will function in real life, beyond the flashy Apple demo videos. Software developer ELEKS was equally curious, deciding to see how Tesla’s existing car app would run on the new wearable device.

Running on an emulator, the demonstration shows the different functions the app allows, like unlocking the car, turning the head lights on and off, and honking the horn remotely. There’s also a charging screen that shows details of the Tesla’s battery life, a location screen that lets users track down the vehicle, and a climate screen that controls the temperature settings remotely.

These aren’t unique functions to the Apple Watch. In fact, all these features are available on the current iPhone app, ELEKS simply developed (unofficially, without involvement from Tesla) a paired down version of the web app to run on the watch. Considering the forward-thinking nature of electric cars, having a quick and handy spot-check of the car’s status right on your wrist makes sense.

It’s a little anticlimactic to hear, though, that it’s just a port of the already existing app. Why not have functions specific to the watch? According to the developers, it’s largely due to Apple’s habit of playing its cards close to its chest. Watchkit, the software development kit for the device, doesn’t have all of the watch functions available yet. The version developers received is a beta form of the software, and there’s no way for them to currently write software for the accelerometer, gyroscope, TapTic tactile notifications, and partial touch screen functions. Essentially, all the stuff that makes the Apple Watch cool.

The watch also has to be in Bluetooth proximity to the phone, acting more of an extension of the phone app rather than a standalone program. These things are subject to change, however, as any software in beta tends to do. Heck, we’re talking about a product that nobody outside of a Cupertino clean room has even seen in real life. As the software improves, we’re sure to see some cool stuff follow. Maybe future versions of the app will have TapTic reminders if you leave the lights on, or use the motion sensors to start the car with a wave of the hand.

Product Review

Apple brought ECG tracking to consumers. Withings is making it affordable

The Apple Watch Series 4 starts at $400, and the highlight function is the electrocardiogram, which has the potential to save lives. Withings’ new Move ECG has the same capability but at a fraction of the cost.

Beam up the videos: AirPlay support is coming to VLC player

At CES 2019, the developers of VLC player announced they are adding support for Apple's Airplay feature, allowing consumers to beam video and other content from their iPhone and Android devices to an Apple TV. 

Before buying a Fitbit or Apple Watch, check out these fitness trackers under $50

Fitbit and Apple Watch are top of the line when it comes to fitness trackers but if you want to save, we have alternatives. If 2019 is the year you keep track of your health and budget your expenses, then take a look at these fitness…
Product Review

Garmin’s 4G LTE VivoActive 3 keeps you safe when you’re out on the trails

Garmin takes its already great VivoActive 3 Music fitness smartwatch and adds a 4G LTE connection, courtesy of Verizon. The watch now has streaming music, independent GPS, and best of all, SMS support and various safety features. We’ve…

The 8-seat, 3-row 2020 Telluride SUV is the biggest Kia ever

It's fitting that the 2020 Kia Telluride debuts at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, as it was built specifically to meet U.S. buyers' insatiable demand for SUVs. Kia packed the eight-seat cabin with family-friendly tech as well.

Cadillac is finally ready to take on Tesla with its own electric car

At the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, Cadillac announced plans for its first electric car. The unnamed model will be a crossover, based on a new platform to be shared with other General Motors brands.

Peloton’s tech lets truckers play follow the leader to boost fuel economy

Peloton Technology can help semi trucks save fuel by running close together on the highway. Using short-range wireless communications, the trucks get a kind of super cruise control.

Move mountains with the 2019 Ram Heavy Duty and its 1,000 pound-feet of torque

Unveiled at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, the 2019 Ram Heavy Duty pickup truck boasts 1,000 pound-feet of torque -- outgunning rival trucks from Ford and Chevrolet. The new Ram goes on sale later this year.

With 341 horsepower, the WRX STI S209 is the most powerful Subaru ever

The Subaru WRX STI S209 is the latest in a series of special editions that have never been sold in the United States before. The 341-horsepower pocket rocket debuts at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show.

China’s GAC Motor cruises into Detroit with all-electric Entranze concept

Chinese automaker GAC Motor brought its all-electric Entranze concept to the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. This is the third straight year that GAC has appeared in Detroit, and the company has established a design center in California.

2020 Ford Explorer branches out with sporty ST, efficiency-focused hybrid models

The 2020 Ford Explorer gets two variants never before seen on Ford's stalwart family hauler. The ST focuses on performance, while the hybrid aims for decent gas mileage. Both models will debut at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show.

Some of Volkswagen’s electric models will wear a ‘Made in the USA’ label

Confirming earlier rumors, Volkswagen has announced it will build electric cars in its Chattanooga, Tennessee, factory. The facility currently produces the Passat and the Atlas. Production will start in 2023, Digital Trends can reveal.

Infiniti previews its leap into one of the hottest industry segments

Infiniti will unveil the QX Inspiration concept at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. The design study is an electric crossover shaped by Infiniti's newest design language that may point to a future production model.

Hyundai’s Veloster N hot hatchback will prove its mettle on the track

The Hyundai Veloster N will go racing to prove the credibility of Hyundai's new N performance division. Unveiled at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, the Veloster N race car will compete in a class with other small cars.