Sci-Tech

Here's how to control a Tesla with your Apple Watch

A software development company has created an app for the forthcoming Apple Watch that gives Tesla owners car control powers.

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A high-tech way to control a high-tech car. ELEKS

With prices around $70,000, you might not be able to afford a Tesla Model S, the luxury electric car made by CEO Elon Musk's Tesla Motor Company. But with the forthcoming Apple Watch, which is expected to cost a much more reasonable $350, you might at least be able to control a rich friend's Tesla from your wrist.

You'd be able to do this by loading an app on the Apple Watch created by software development company ELEKS. The app has multiple screens that can be accessed by swiping the watch's face from side to side. It also provides the ability to monitor the Tesla's battery life and remaining range, track the car's location, lock and unlock the doors, sound the horn, operate the lights, open and close the sunroof and adjust passenger and driver temperatures.

It sounds like developing the app wasn't easy -- certainly not as easy as promised by Apple.

In a blog post about developing the Tesla app, the company lays out a lot of reasons why the development kit for the watch isn't great for, um, developers. "Apple does not indulge developers with an abundance of functionality and tools," says Markiyan Matsekh, ELEKS product manager in his post. "However, we can hope that the available functions are limited because this is only the first beta version and it will get much better towards the release."

Still, the ELEKS folks persevered, developed a serious amount of workarounds (detailed in the blog post) and came up with what looks like a pretty cool app that will eventually imbue any Tesla owner with Michael-Knight-like powers of car control -- as you can see in this video which shows the app working on an Apple Watch emulator. Now if they could only come up with a way for CNET writers to get free Teslas. Hmm ...