CNN reports that Tesla has opted to give up on allowing drivers to play video games while driving Tesla cars after a federal safety probe showed what should have been obvious from the start: Playing video games while driving is unsafe.
Dubbed “Passenger Play”, the feature allowed passengers to interface with the touchscreen and play games while the car is in motion. And even though Tesla made it very clear that the feature was only to be used by passengers, drivers could still play games as well, even if the car is in motion. This prompted a federal investigation, which led to this latest move by Tesla to update all current cars to disable Passenger Play while the car is in motion.
Tesla’s moves make sense in different ways, while falling into one major problem in the middle. The brand has always been youth-oriented and billed as the future of cars, so of course integrating video games is an appealing prospect. The obvious problem with that is the distraction factor. If a driver is playing a game while driving, accident potential increases dramatically. This even applies to if the front-seat passenger is playing a game. Tesla neutering the feature is the right call, but it should never have been implemented like it was for what should be obvious reasons.
When the Passenger Play feature was first announced, it came with a trickle of games such as Cuphead and Fallout Shelter, which was met with bafflement from many in the games industry as, again, the danger should have been obvious.
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