Tesla released its latest software update, Firmware 2020.48.26 that arrived just in time for Christmas. Tesla owners were treated to new features that are both fun and quirky. It also included user experience enhancements, additional, games, and visualizations improvements. Although we know how Tesla boss, Elon Musk likes to push technology boundaries, he also has a sense of humor not appreciated by everyone.
An unusual feature has been included in the latest update that’s not just for Tesla owners. If you happen to be sharing a road with a Tesla EV, you may well still experience this new addition.
Everyone’s talking about the new Boombox mode incorporated into Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y where the car’s owner can customize the horn. You will have the option to make the horn sound like an audience applause, the tune of La Cucaracha, a goat bleating, or even a …. fart…
Well, this is not the conventional horn sound, it’s probable that many Tesla owners are going to have some fun with these new sound effects, and what’s more, it is possible to add up to five other custom sounds using a USB key. Musk seems obviously chuffed with the latest update as he took to Twitter to make the announcement personally:
Change your horn sound to [Goat emoji], [Snake with Saxophone emoji], [Blowing cloud emoji] or holiday jingles with latest Tesla software update!
The emojis are left up to interpretation.
Tesla’s Boombox also lets Tesla drivers tweak driving sounds for in-motion fun. These can be used while driving the car, parking it, or using the Smart Summon mode. Chances are you’re going to start hearing a lot of crazy sounds coming from parking areas, neighbors, and even from Tesla vehicles on the road. So, in case it sounds like a Star Wars Fighter jet is overhead, just look around for a Tesla. While this all seems innocent and fun, which it certainly will be, we hope that Tesla owners don’t abuse this feature to the annoyance of pedestrians and passing cars, or that it becomes too big a distraction for drivers.
However, if you’re curious to get the latest Boombox mode, you will need to have a newer Tesla model that has an external speaker. Tesla has added a disclaimer to using the Boombox with an on-screen warning to check local laws before using it in public spaces.
The Boombox is accessed through the infotainment system's Toybox menu that offers a list of games. This latest update has also included new amusements like Cat Quest, The Battle of Polytopia, and Solitaire, which can all be used while the car is on and moving. So, when the car is in-motion, these games should be strictly used by the passenger only.
On a more serious note, there were other features included such as updating the on-screen driving visualizations used for Tesla's optional Full-Self Driving (FSD) technology. The improvement in graphics provided a clearer view on what is happening around the vehicle when the FSD is being used. There have also been some tweaks to the layout of features and options on the screen to improve usability and ease of access.
Another practical update is enhancements to the Scheduled Departure feature, which prepares the vehicle's cabin and battery (even if the car is unplugged) for the expected time of departure.
Tesla's Firmware 2020.45.26 Holiday Update is currently rolling out to the entire fleet of Teslas using the over-the-air update.
For an in-depth walkthrough of the Boombox and latest updates, can watch the following video that was produced and published by the Tesla Owners Online YouTube channel.