Sometimes the internet seems to think that if it wants something enough, it will exist. And what the internet really wants right now, it seems, is a Tesla phone. The web is awash with design concepts and purported specs for a phone that some say will offer some serious rivalry for Apple's iPhone. Some sites are even insisting that the Tesla phone will be released on December 1 as if it's a solid gold fact.
Is any of it true? Probably not, but we've seen some great concepts and it's fun to imagine that Elon Musk might come up with a smartphone if only as a retort to the rumoured Apple Car. Here are some of the best concepts doing the rounds online but if you're looking for a smartphone that actually exists, see our roundup of the best iPhone 14 prices and the best iPhone 14 cases.
With a survey finding that the Apple Car is already more popular than Tesla before it even exists, we might expect Tesla to fight back and launch a smartphone that could rival Apple's iPhone. Rumours about the Tesla phone have resurfaced this week, with websites including Mashable claiming that it's set for release on 1 December. Some sites even provide pricing for the phone, without citing where they've got the information from.
The rumours seem to stem from an early 2021 concept video from ADR Studio Design (see below). Designer Antonio De Rosa has made concept designs for iPhones and other products too, and he always clarifies that they are his own ideas and not based on any leaks or rumours. But as we've just seen with those viral Netflix Zelda posters, the internet sometimes misses, or intentionally ignores such clarifications.
De Rosa's Tesla phone concept features satellite internet from SpaceX's Starlink, solar charging, vehicle control as a development of Tesla's existing app, astrophotography, crypto mining and Neuralink support. How things developed from De Rosa's concept, some of which remains the stuff of science fiction, to claims that the Tesla Pi Phone will be released in just a few weeks isn't clear. Either way, designers have been putting their own spin on what a Tesla phone could look like, with varying degrees of seriousness.
Would you buy a Tesla phone? Fuck yeah!!! #teslaphone #tesla pic.twitter.com/augFUp9z7vSeptember 30, 2022
I keep my #TeslaPhone updated OTA. My car too. pic.twitter.com/RHS1VWV2mBSeptember 26, 2022
#Teslaphone spotted. pic.twitter.com/JGYa5whk8fSeptember 16, 2022
Will there be a Tesla Phone?
For now, Tesla has given no hint that it's working on a Tesla phone. For some companies, that might not rule the possibility out since tech giant tend to keep their projects closely guarded, but Tesla tends to provide previews of things that it's working on – including the much-mocked Tesla robot.
It also seems very unlikely that a phone could be due for release in December of this year and for nobody at Tesla or at a supplier letting slip a credible leak. Musk himself ruled out designing a smartphone way back in 2020, but then again, it wouldn't be unheard of for Musk to change his mind.
Definitely not. Smartwatches & phones are yesterday’s technology, Neuralinks are the future.September 14, 2020
If Musk does launch a Tesla phone, we're not sure how it would wash with a lesser-known company of the same name. Serbia's Comtrade Group currently produces phones as well as white goods under its own Tesla brand.
For now, we're taking all rumours of the Tesla phone with a pinch of salt, but if anything more credible does emerge, you'll be sure to hear about it here. To explore phones that you can buy now, see our guide to the best camera phones.