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Tesla will turn off the ability to play when the car is in motion


After opening a preliminary review of its Passenger Play, Tesla informed the agency that it was changing the functionality, said a spokesperson for NHTSA.

In a new software update, Passenger Play will now be locked and unusable when the vehicle is in motion, she added.

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

An option that increases the risk of accidents

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

This option may distract the driver and increase the risk of an accident, warned the NHTSA.

The agency specifies that the possibility of playing while driving has only been offered since December 2020 in equipped models.

Previously, the Passenger Play feature was only available when the car was stationary.

At the beginning of 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 displays a warning to clarify that only passengers are allowed to play when the car is in motion.

Complaint from a driver

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

How come a manufacturer is allowed to display videos that clearly obstruct focus and take up two-thirds of the screen the driver needs to have all the information about his vehicle?, read the complaint filed by a resident of Lake Oswego, Oregon.

Inattentive driving caused 3,142 fatalities in the United States in 2019, according to NHTSA.

Tesla is already in the agency’s sights for its controversial driver assistance system dubbed Autopilot.

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