The notion of adding Netflix to Tesla cars has been enthusiastically received. With the push of the new version 10 software, it's now arriving for customers, bringing with it the ability to sign-in to your Netflix account and carry on the great binge.
The Tesla Model 3, arguably, is the best model from the range for this, as it has a landscape display in it, rather than the portrait of the Model S and Model X. The positioning of that display, higher on the dashboard, also means it's in a better position for watching Netflix in the car.
Firstly, you can't watch when you're driving. That - as well as many of Tesla's other fun features - only work when the car is parked. But Teslas are cars you do park - especially if you're stopping at a Supercharger - so adding in-car entertainment makes a lot more sense than you might initially think.
Netflix hides in the entertainment section of the v10 software, where you'll find two tabs - one for Arcade and the other for Theater. Arcade gives you access to all the games (they're also in the Toy Box, but who's counting?), while Theater houses Netflix, YouTube and Tesla's own collection of tutorial videos. More streaming services might be coming in the future too.
The Netflix interface on Tesla is basically identical to Netflix in a browser, and once you've logged in, you'll find your users and everything as you expect it to be. It really pops on that display too - and once you hit play, it uses variable bitrate playback so you don't have to wait for any buffering, it just starts and increases the quality once the stream is established.
A gimmick? Honestly, that's what we were expecting, but the reality is much more compelling. Once we'd fired up Netflix, we just sat there watching, captivated. Then we moved to the back seat to watch some more. Yes, it's watching Netflix in a car, but it works.
One of the things that makes it work is the sound system. Tesla gives you the option to have a surround sound setup on those speakers and you'll hear it when you start watching. Not only is the sound quality great, but the separation and positioning matches the onscreen action, so it's more immersive than you might except.
With streaming video comes the question of data. Tesla cars all have a data connection and for many it's unlimited and free. Recently, some uses started seeing a data counter appear on the display - with a 50GB cap. It had always been said that there would be a limit to free data on some models, but so far that's not happened. Could we also see this change now that video streaming is part of the experience?
Even if it does you can always connect your Telsa to a Wi-Fi hotspot (which many Supercharger locations offer), or you can connect to a Wi-Fi hotspot on your phone.