Sentry Mode Coming Soon For Tesla Cars With Enhanced Autopilot


How about having a way to record the surroundings of your Tesla to catch culprits?

Due to Tesla’s Enhanced Autopilot and its multiple cameras, the automaker can provide many upcoming over-the-air updates. Not too long ago, the promised TeslaCam (standard integrated dashcam) feature came online. Now, CEO Elon Musk says a Sentry Mode is in the works.

What is Sentry mode exactly? Well the definition of sentry is a solider that stands guard. So, the feature will use Tesla Autopilot cameras to give owners a 360-degree look at their car while they’re away. In addition, they’ll be able to record footage for use later. Musk tweeted:

In the midst of one of Musk’s earlier tweet storms, he asked owners to share ideas for upcoming improvements/updates:

Generally, despite people’s doubts about many of Musk’s tweeted promises, he has a track record for making these features a reality. However, he didn’t elaborate on details or a timelines related to the upcoming Sentry Mode update.

It’s important to note that, much like the TeslaCam feature, this will only become available on newer Tesla vehicles with Enhanced Autopilot and the automaker’s version 9.0 software update in place. This means that vehicles manufactured prior to August 2017 are ineligible.

Owners can choose to save 10-minute clips, along with the ability to pause and restart recording. However, it seems that if you’re not watching and ready to hit record, the footage will eventually be deleted.

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25 Comments on "Sentry Mode Coming Soon For Tesla Cars With Enhanced Autopilot"

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Originally, he said it was for cars with “Enhanced Autopilot”, aka the $5,000 option, but then says it’s part of safety and security, so “all cars with AP2+ hardware will get it.”

So, if the last tweet is correct, the headline is incorrect as it doesn’t require the $5k Enhanced Autopilot option.

This needs an update … one does NOT need EAP, its for all AP2+ cars with or without EAP.

You are correct, 3laine!

Hopefully it’s minimal battery drain…

Well Done Tesla….again!

This reminds me of Kit from Knight Rider. The software should also have motion logic, so that it anticipates behaviors/movements to give an alert to the person ‘before’ they cause damage. For example if the cam sees a person close to the car but it’s their back to the car as they are entering or loading their own car, then no alert. But if the cam sees the person facing the car, getting too close, looking in, an alert is offered. “Step Away From the Vehicle!” with light flashing.

Also, the system needs to upload the footage to the Tesla cloud. Because if it’s just on the USB, they would just steal that.

But it’s a good idea that was offered that Tesla publicize Tesla Sentry Mode, stressing that if they trip the system they are being recorded.

I remember cars with proximity detectors as a child in the 90’s. We used to love setting them off so they would talk to us.

I’m sure the neighbours hated them, which is probably why the use of sensitive external alarms seems to have reduced significantly in recent years…

Yep… the new game will be to provoke cars into make “threatening” statements. Recording video is useful, making silly announcements is not.

CT6 already has this. Since 2016. You can record 360 by pressing the record button (at parking-lot speeds), or, it will automatically record during an alarm event. It will keep the recordings until overwritten. Which is a long time for a 128Gb card. No built-in dash cam though. Card is removable so you can view on a computer equipped to read it.

360 (bird’s-eye) view is very handy for parking. I shows either a forward or rearward view simultaneously. These are auto-selected based on gear shift position, or, you can choose the view from the touch screen.

GM’s Vision Statement: We aim to have the highest quality engineers, worst executive leadership, and industry worst in class dealers while absconding billions from US taxpayers.

So the 5K$ option is needed or not?

NOT needed, as long as the hardware is there (it is with all Model 3’s, for instance).

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Not knocking this but what are the chances you get a video of who did it or a license plate?

My cynical side has me thinking it will become a game for assholes to bust a window without getting caught. Masks and stuff will ensue. Maybe I’m just grumpy because the M3 I drive was smashed in it’s rear driver side window last night (Ukiah supercharger station).

Oh, I saw someone post a picture of your car on Reddit!

I’m sorry to hear about that, how did it happen?

Independent of the car’s capability, I guess I just assumed every supercharger location had security cameras.

This is such an obvious use of onboard cameras it surprising no one has done it before.

I am guessing one reason is the isolated modules (like lane departure) in conventional vehicle architectures cannot move video to the communications module, whereas the central processor based Tesla architecture eliminates that restriction.

It should work like the Ring Door bell. Tesla should sell option to load footage to cloud account like Ring does.

Volt#671 + BoltEV + Model 3

This will only be handy if Tesla changes when files are overwritten.
I’ve got a 32gb card in my 3, and only get an hour of video. Not a problem while driving, because we can push the save button…but 8 hours in a parking lot is different.

Also, I’d pay extra to have the video uploaded in near real time.

It doesn’t need to record constantly while parked. It only needs to record when it detects an event such as alarm, vibration, sound or motion.

I think it should record constantly when in Sentry Mode, but only save 1 minute before and after the alarm when the alarm goes off, for instance. If you only start recording after the alarm, you don’t see anything leading up to the alarm.

Hmmm, maybe spend 25$ on a 128 GB card?

That is a cool feature to have. I hope it doesn’t cause much battery drain. I have a dash cam that does sort of “drunk sentry”. But it uses awful amount of power. While parked in the neighborhood, it activates when it detects motion. So, when a car goes by or when neighbors walk by while walking their dogs, it records for up to 30 seconds at a time. Over the course of the weekend, it easily logs hours of video. The worst is when a yard service shows up, it pretty much logs the entire 30 minutes as the motion is detected around the car for the entire time.

The forward Tesla Cam isn’t reliable now… it frequently still needs a formatting to keep it working. Luckily 8 GB drives are cheep so I have two that I swap out when one gets corrupted.

Probably not going to help with quarter window breakins, they don’t set off the alarm.