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Tesla starts charging $10 a month for its ‘premium connectivity’ features

Tesla is now starting to offer its previously announced ‘premium connectivity’ features for a new $9.99 a month subscription plan.

When Tesla first launched Model S in 2012, some owners were quite perplexed about the fact that the internet service came with the cars at no cost and there was no clear indication of when it was going to change, if at all.

In 2014, Tesla clarified that the internet connection would be for four years, but the deadline came, and Tesla kept offering connectivity for free.

Last summer, the automaker started introducing different tiers of connectivity:

  • Standard Connectivity offers basic maps & navigation, music & media over Bluetooth® and software updates over Wi-Fi. Note: Important safety updates will continue to be available over the car’s cellular connection.
  • Premium Connectivity adds satellite-view maps with live traffic visualization, in-car streaming music & media, an internet browser (for Model S and Model X), and over-the-air software updates via Wi-Fi and cellular.

Virtually all cars, except for the base versions of the Model 3, sold before July 2018 have the premium connectivity features included for free for the lifetime of the car.

Everyone else will eventually have to pay.

Model Ordered on or before
June 30, 2018
Ordered on or after
July 1, 2018
Model S
Model X
Free Premium Connectivity Eligible for Premium Connectivity subscription
Model 3 with Premium Interior Free Premium Connectivity Eligible for Premium Connectivity subscription
Model 3 Standard Range
Standard Range Plus
Not Applicable Eligible for Premium Connectivity subscription
Used Tesla cars Free Premium Connectivity Eligible for Premium Connectivity subscription

However, over a year after the announcement, Tesla had yet to start charging anyone for the premium connectivity… until now.

Several Model 3 owners contacted Electrek after receiving the following email from Tesla today:

“You’ve received a complimentary 30-day trial of Premium Connectivity ending on 01/07/2020. Subscribe any time during the free trial t continue enjoying the features below.”

It appears that Tesla has finally figured out a payment system for the feature. The automaker included an extra 30-day grace period after which it will start charging $9.99 per month for the following features:

The features with an asterisk are still available when the car is connected to wifi.

Earlier this year, we reported on Tesla starting to monitor data use in its vehicles ahead of starting to charge for connectivity.

Electrek’s Take

In short, instead of charging people for having an internet connection in the first place, Tesla is including one for free, but it is making owners pay to use more data-intensive features on the internet connection.

That’s fair because Tesla needs its cars to be connected to the internet since it is using them to gather a lot of data and it is important for software updates and Autopilot.

But the cost of having a giant fleet of hundreds of thousands of cars uploading and downloading data all the time most start to be quite significant.

So Tesla is starting to try to offset that with this new $10 per month charge.

Do you think It’s worth it for those features?

Let us know what you think in the comment section

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