Major update for Tesla Android, this project that adds Android Auto and CarPlay to Tesla-designed cars. Launched at the beginning of the year, its first finalized version was released in the spring and it had a major drawback. To work, it required a long list of hardware, including no less than two Raspberry Pis. The latest version that just got out significantly improves the situation, since a single Raspberry Pi is now enough.
Tesla Android Project brings Android Auto and CarPlay to Teslas with two Raspberry Pis
The principle remains the same: its creator, Michał Gapiński, created a specific version of Android so that it could run on a Raspberry Pi 4 and project its interface into the web browser integrated into the Tesla. Adding one of the many dongles capable of displaying CarPlay or Android Auto on an Android device provides a solution that is fast and reliable enough to add this function, which electric-only cars have been deprived of since their inception.
It’s not as clean as a native integration of CarPlay and Android Auto, but since that doesn’t seem to be coming soon, it’s an intermediate solution that seems satisfactory. As the video above shows, the smoothness isn’t optimal with CarPlay, but it might be enough if you want to use Apple’s system to manage music or follow a route. This update required major changes to the source code, so it is not as optimized as the previous version and the latter will offer better performance for the time being.
By abandoning one of the two Raspberry Pis, the developer of Tesla Android has also succeeded in considerably simplifying the installation, even if it requires not being afraid to tinker in the terminal. On the hardware side, the list of necessary equipment is also much shorter than before. Compared to the very first version, the 4G modem is no longer mandatory, especially if you are not using the car’s premium connection. On the other hand, the small video capture card is still necessary, even if the developer plans to get rid of it in a future version.
Tesla Android is a free and open-source project, you can contribute to it if you have the necessary knowledge. Donations are encouraged if you cannot help on the development side.