I got my Model 3 Key Fob!

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#1
Well sort of (sorry for the baiting). My LG V20 is terrible a bluetooth key. Only works maybe 50% of the time, and since Elon can't seem to hear those of us that their phone doesn't work well as a key, I decided to solve the problem myself. So I bought this...
View media item 874
The World's smallest cell phone with bluetooth! And it actually works! (as a phone anyway). It is smaller than most key fobs. Now all I have to do is figure out how to get the Tesla App on it and I have solved the biggest problem facing the world today!
 

garsh

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#5
There's an old thread where I think I found the smallest Android phone that has all the features required to run the Tesla app and function as a Model 3 key.

The Unihertz Jelly Pro runs Android 7, so good for future-proofing, but is a bit pricier at $125.
The reviews on Amazon are overwhelmingly positive.
It supports Bluetooth 4.0, but sounds like it does not implement the LE part.
Has 2GB ram, and 16GB storage, so that meets my minimum suggested criteria for a phone. :)
Decent battery size - 950mAh.

https://www.unihertz.com/store/product/jelly-pro-black/
Old article (with pricing from kickstarter days - ignore the price):
http://bgr.com/2017/05/04/smallest-android-phone-jelly/
I love this GIF demonstrating how small it is. :)

The various other small Android phones appeared to have one of the following issues. Investigate them in more detail if you're considering one.
  • Android version older than 5 (dealbreaker - can't run the Tesla app).
  • No bluetooth, or an older revision of bluetooth (certainly no bluetooth LE). Make sure it has bluetooth!
  • RAM as low as 512MB. Will be painful trying to use the Tesla app, but might not matter if leaving in your pocket like a key only.
  • Extremely limited carrier frequency support (not an issue if using this just as a key with no carrier SIM at all).
  • Very short battery life.
 
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Chris350

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#6
Funny observation.... I have always had issues listening to to my phone via BT using BT headphones when my phone is in my back pants pocket.

Never have this problem when it's in the front pants pocket...

So today.... I test my theory... at least for me..... When the phone is in my back pocket when I approach the car.... It unlocks about 50% of the time..... If I am holding the phone or it's in my front pocket, it unlocks everytime.... Strange...
 

garsh

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#7
Funny observation.... I have always had issues listening to to my phone via BT using BT headphones when my phone is in my back pants pocket.

Never have this problem when it's in the front pants pocket...

So today.... I test my theory... at least for me..... When the phone is in my back pocket when I approach the car.... It unlocks about 50% of the time..... If I am holding the phone or it's in my front pocket, it unlocks everytime.... Strange...
Just how big is your butt?


(I kid! I kid!)
 

JWardell

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#9
Bluetooth has an incredibly hard time going through your body. Especially if there is a lot of other 2.4GHz bluetooth and wifi networks adding noise. Just a few days ago I was working on the car with my phone in one pocket and speaker in the other, and it had constant dropouts, and was fine once I moved it a few inches forward. Plus they have pulled back the signal strength needed to unlock the car so there are not so many unintentional unlocks.
Phone unlocking has worked perfectly for me, it's always just transparent. But I keep my phone in my front pocket :)
 

slacker775

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#10
Phone unlocking has worked perfectly for me, it's always just transparent. But I keep my phone in my front pocket :)
Ditto. I'm on an iPhone 7 Plus (IOS 11.4.1), phone always in a front pocket and I've never had an issue *knock on wood*. My phone is not connected to 2700 other peripherals like speakers, headphones, watches, etc so there isn't any 'competition' either.
 

scaots

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#11
The Unihertz Jelly Pro runs Android 7, so good for future-proofing, but is a bit pricier at $125.
The reviews on Amazon are overwhelmingly positive.
It supports Bluetooth 4.0, but sounds like it does not implement the LE part.
Has 2GB ram, and 16GB storage, so that meets my minimum suggested criteria for a phone. :)
Decent battery size - 950mAh.

https://www.unihertz.com/store/product/jelly-pro-black/
Old article (with pricing from kickstarter days - ignore the price):
http://bgr.com/2017/05/04/smallest-android-phone-jelly/
I love this GIF demonstrating how small it is. :)

The various other small Android phones appeared to have one of the following issues. Investigate them in more detail if you're considering one.
  • Android version older than 5 (dealbreaker - can't run the Tesla app).
  • No bluetooth, or an older revision of bluetooth (certainly no bluetooth LE). Make sure it has bluetooth!
  • RAM as low as 512MB. Will be painful trying to use the Tesla app, but might not matter if leaving in your pocket like a key only.
  • Extremely limited carrier frequency support (not an issue if using this just as a key with no carrier SIM at all).
  • Very short battery life.
I actually have one of these. Mostly thought it was an interesting novelty. Probably needs charged, but maybe i can test it sometime. Some Android applications have issues with such low screen resolutions, though I think this is within Android spec so should work if they designed the app to follow all guidelines (which is a big if).
 

coredumperror

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#14
I'm a bit confused, here. How does having a second, small phone with the Tesla App work any better than just using Phone Key on the Tesla App in your normal phone?

I ask because I'm one of those few people who can't use Phone Key. I live in a condo directly above my carport, and if my phone is anywhere in my living room, my car unlocks. I've switched to keycard-only, but if there's any way to avoid that necessity, I'd love to learn about it.
 

John

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#15
I'm a bit confused, here. How does having a second, small phone with the Tesla App work any better than just using Phone Key on the Tesla App in your normal phone?

I ask because I'm one of those few people who can't use Phone Key. I live in a condo directly above my carport, and if my phone is anywhere in my living room, my car unlocks. I've switched to keycard-only, but if there's any way to avoid that necessity, I'd love to learn about it.
Yeah, if you're in range—though they've really tightened up the range, have you tried lately?—cycling Bluetooth with the swipe menu while at home is the way to go. I used to have to toggle Bluetooth back in the days before they got rid of "walk up unlock," but now that the range has been really pulled in tight (like 10 feet) it's not an issue for me, even though our garage is part of our house, and we have a room directly over it. I flopped my phone on the floor of that room, went to the garage, and couldn't unlock it with the handle of the car. May depend on construction, though...
 
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coredumperror

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#16
I got my car two weeks ago, so unless they've tightened the range since then, Phone Key is still unusable for me.

I think it's entirely possible that the issue is mostly construction, because I can be ~3 feet from the car as long as I'm on the other side of the exterior carport wall, and the doors will lock. But as long as my phone is *anywhere* in my living room (up to about 7 feet from my car horizontally, and about 6 feet vertically), my doors unlock.

I could try using the "turn off Bluetooth" method, since I never need it when my phone is inside my house. But since I use an iPhone, the Control Center version of "turn off Bluetooth" turns it back on automatically after a day. So I'd have to unlock my phone, delve deep into the Setting app, and disable Bluetooth from there every time I get home, and then do the same thing again just to drive my car the next day or after the weekend.

The keycards are more convenient than that, and it's not worth the risk of forgetting to turn off Bluetooth., since I park in a publicly accessible carport.
 

Rich M

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#17
Something isn't right here. After you walk away and the car locks, it shouldn't unlock until you walk up with the phone and pull a door handle.
Are you saying just walking by the car or being close to it is causing the mirrors to unfold and the lights to flash without touching the car?
 

John

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#18
Something isn't right here. After you walk away and the car locks, it shouldn't unlock until you walk up with the phone and pull a door handle.
Are you saying just walking by the car or being close to it is causing the mirrors to unfold and the lights to flash without touching the car?
I think he's saying if someone went in his carport—and carports are open to the outside, no door—while he had his phone in the house next to the garage, they could open the door of his car. That's effectively the same as unlocked.
 

coredumperror

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#19
I think he's saying if someone went in his carport—and carports are open to the outside, no door—while he had his phone in the house next to the garage, they could open the door of his car. That's effectively the same as unlocked.
Correct. Leaving my phone in my living room and walking downstairs to the carport allows me to open my car's doors. At which point the mirrors unfold, the HVAC system comes online, etc. There's no visual indication that the car is unlocked, but a thief won't expect that, anyway. And I confirmed that the car CAN be driven away with my phone still sitting in the living room. So yeah, Phone Key is a big NOPE for me.

I've spoken to Tesla customer support about this, and they know about the issue. Apparently, "carport-under-living-room" is a common configuration in San Francisco, so quite a lot Model 3 owners are in the same situation as me. Sadly, the support rep said that Tesla doesn't currently have any plans to address this problem.
 

jsmay311

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#20
You probably already saw in the other thread, but I already fixed all the phones.
I tried this with my iPhone “wallet case” with the key card in it and tapping the phone to the pillar and it didn’t work. (With the card on the side of the phone facing the car, of cource.) Removing all other credit cards from the case made no difference.

Even after taking the key card out the case, if I held the phone close enough to the card when talking it on the pillar, the iphone seemed to prevent the car’s sensor from reading the card.