Tesla CEO Elon Musk hints third-party apps may come when company builds enough cars

Tesla’s infotainment system is exclusive to the company with zero support for outside applications. In the future, that could change.

CEO Elon Musk told the Ride The Lightning unofficial Tesla podcast last weekend that Tesla cars could someday support third-party apps. Musk said developers will only start to look at making apps for Tesla vehicles when more of them are on the road. As it stands, there simply aren’t enough cars to warrant building Tesla-specific apps to play nice with the cars’ infotainment system, which is an Intel platform that runs Linux.

“There’s no money in it right now,” Musk said on the podcast, referring to third-party developers.

Currently, Tesla vehicles have specific applications for music streaming, podcasts, navigation, and more. The cars also house a rather impressive list of in-car games that are playable on the center touchscreen. They include “2048,” “Super Breakout,” “Missile Command,” “Asteroids,” “Lunar Lander,” and “Centipede.” The sidescroller game “Cuphead,” which was released in 2017, is also soon to come to Tesla’s large center screen, as is a beach buggy game. For now, the company is working with game developers that it thinks are cool.

Consumer Reports Tesla Model 3 Navigate on Autopilot ready for right-lane pass [CREDIT;: CR]

Consumer Reports Tesla Model 3 Navigate on Autopilot ready for right-lane pass [CREDIT;: CR]

The possibility of third-party apps could mean popular services like Spotify, Waze, and others may become compatible with Tesla’s system. However, Musk’s musings are hardly a confirmation.

In the meantime, Musk is focused on raising crucial funding for the automaker as Model 3 production continues to ramp up. Recently, the CEO said the Model Y crossover would be built at its Fremont, California, facility alongside its other vehicles. There was previously talk of the Model Y coming from a Chinese factory Tesla has planned.

Tesla Model Y

Tesla Model Y

Musk has also promised a new Tesla Roadster, a Semi, and a pickup truck from the company in the near future.


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