The NHTSA is looking into Tesla Arcade and video games in Tesla vehicles
The NHTSA is keeping a close watch on Tesla after the automaker announced intentions to build a new video game platform inside its vehicles. If you haven’t heard about this, the new video game interface was actually talked about last year.
Called Tesla Arcade, it would give Tesla users the ability to play a wide range of video games from the infotainment system of their car.
Tesla says the feature is supposed to be used when the vehicle is parked or by the passenger when the vehicle is in motion. A warning screen comes on if the vehicle is rolling, reminding the user that the video game is to be played by the passenger only but the NHTSA is apparently looking into the matter and has expressed concerns about safety.
The fact that the driver can theoretically bypass the warning and use the video game when driving is evidently a clear safety issue. We don’t allow phones to be held when driving anymore because of the demonstrated danger it poses to the driver and other road users. It is obvious that a video game could be far more distracting than a phone.
Speaking with Reuters, the NHTSA had this to say:
“Distraction-affected crashes are a concern, particularly in vehicles equipped with an array of convenience technologies such as entertainment screens. We are aware of driver concerns and are discussing the feature with the manufacturer,”
We don’t know when Tesla will unveil Tesla Arcade, but the manufacturer tends to release these kinds of unique and fun features around the holidays. Tesla could release the feature before the end of the year. It will be interesting to see how this plays out and if the NHTSA forces Tesla to change or adapt the feature to make it safer.