‘Watch App for Tesla’ Update: Offline Bluetooth Key Support, Unlatch Any Door Shortcut and More

A holiday update to the Watch app for Tesla ($19.99 USD) has begun rolling out, including long-awaited features such as direct vehicle control with Bluetooth to allow the use of the Apple Watch as a proper Bluetooth key for Teslas.

This lets drivers use the Apple Watch to unlock and access Tesla vehicles, unlatch doors and drive, without the use of Wi-Fi or network connectivity as long as the Apple Watch is in Bluetooth range. This means if there’s a problem with Tesla’s network, having this watch app with its new Bluetooth controls means you can always access your Tesla to unlock doors.

The update also added cloud processing for commands, increasing reliability when using the watch to send tasks to the Tesla vehicle.

To activate the watch as a key, the account instructs users to open the Watch for Tesla app, navigate to the settings and enable “Bluetooth direct vehicle control.”

Then, they’ll need to bring the Tesla keycard into the vehicle and press the Add key button, before tapping the keycard on the card reader and confirming on screen.

The WatchForTesla account also notes that the Bluetooth key is device-specific, meaning that the pairing keys will not sync between different devices. For that reason, the account points out that users should do all the pairing from the watch app, rather than from the vehicle.

When the title area of the app displays a ‘Link’ icon, users will know their vehicles are within Bluetooth range and are linked — letting them lock and unlock the vehicle, open the trunk or frunk and access the charge port.

Also available now is an unlatch door feature that works not just for the driver side door (like Tesla’s latest update), but also any door in your vehicle.

For those looking for a free Apple Watch app, aside from Watch app for Tesla, Tessie is also a great choice for iPhone and Apple Watch users.