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Buying $150 Key fob for wife, worth it?

TravelFree

Member
Mar 23, 2020
835
791
Jacksonville, Florida
I bought my wife a fob for our Y. This was in March 2020 before she used to drive a lot more, and more times getting in and out of the car. Yes, the fob worked 100% of the time even when it just sits passively in her purse.

Maybe an Apple watch with an app to open the frunk/trunk (basically all the functions of Tesla app) is better than buying the fob. I use Watch for Tesla app in my Apple Watch to do pretty much all of the above functions, plus Auto Frunk by Tesla Offer help solve another first world problem. lol :D.

Kidding aside, I probably would not buy a fob if i were to do it over. Phone and key card is good enough.

Few more points - I used to have Samsung Galaxy with similar issue with yours. The Near Field Comm function works for Androids amd Tesla. Just tap your authenticated Android phone to the driver pillar below the camera and it will lock/unlock your car. It also works as key by tapping it on the sensor by the cup holders.

Google Assistant’s EV Car add on app can also be used to remotely lock/unlock, and whatever else - easily in an Android phone.
Thanks, just saw this thread and my wife will be the driver of a new Y. She had requested the FOB as well but wears an Apple watch and sometimes leave without her iphone. Glad to learn the Apple watch will work just as good as the iphone when not around.
 
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TravelFree

Member
Mar 23, 2020
835
791
Jacksonville, Florida
IMG_2068.jpg

Nylon Plastic Cable ties to a small split ring works for me.
 

ChrgdTeCHick

Member
May 7, 2017
352
184
Florida
love my keyfob. makes it easier walking up to the car and just opening the doors without having to fumble with my phone. I've had the X and really miss self presenting doors so this is the closest thing to it :p
I'm coming from an S hence why I'm debating a keyfob. Used it 99% of the time. The self presenting doors are something I'll miss! But I didn't have any issued with it like others.
 

loanchau2k

Member
Nov 25, 2020
147
77
Fremont, CA
Hi OP, curious if you ended up getting they keyfob? I get my Y this weekend. Going to go without it for a while and see if I fumble around for it too often, or not often, to make my decision.
LOL, since I wanted to buy one for my wife, but she says she is ok with Iphone, so I decided not to get one. Until I hear she complains, otherwise, I won't buy it. But from experience with my Android, Galaxy Note 9, it's not that good. It fails to detect 5% of the time, I have to wave my phone over the driving side mirror (that is where the Bluetooth is installed) in order for MY to detect it. I have heard you never have this issue with keyfoob, so it might be worth it. I can live with 5% failture, is not that bad, I just make sure my phone is out of the pocket before I get into the Tesla
 

TravelFree

Member
Mar 23, 2020
835
791
Jacksonville, Florida
We discussed it and when I told her the FOB was $150 that ended the discussion. What we both really want is for the watch to do the job with the unlocking but I don't think the 3rd party app will work. It does work well with controls and is very fast at updating the miles range on my S.

I guess the iphones have more powerful BT transmission than the Android phones. My last Samsung was a 5 and it is long gone so I can't test.
 

wackojacko

Member
May 17, 2018
63
30
Toronto
Thx a lot guys. I use Android, Galaxy Note, sometimes I have an issue, it requires me to move my phone over the outside mirror (since tella installed Bluetooth there) for the car to detect my phone. My wife has in IPhone, I worry she might have the same issue that I have. But so far, she has been ok with her IPhone. She does keep a card-key in her purse in case her IPhone does not work.

But again to see if it's worth it. I heard that key fob will work like 100% of the time, that's why I ask for opinions. Also, I thought being able to open frunk/trunk with key fob is much easier than open Tesla Apps on the phone might worth the money :)
If you have NFC turned on your phone works like a card. You can tap your phone to the b pillar to unlock. This is handy it bt causes issues.

This is super handy when you have two Tesla and don't want to open the app and switch cars, app switches when you tap on pillar.
 
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ChrgdTeCHick

Member
May 7, 2017
352
184
Florida
If you have NFC turned on your phone works like a card. You can tap your phone to the b pillar to unlock. This is handy it bt causes issues.

This is super handy when you have two Tesla and don't want to open the app and switch cars, app switches when you tap on pillar.
I have a wallet on my phone which I plan to keep the card in, however, coming from an S with a keyfob, having it unlocked/lock as you're walking towards/away from the car is very convenient, no need to dig around for the phone just to get in the car. This is someone who's always doing something on the phone, but come driving time it's in a bag or pocket. This is why personally I'm debating the keyfob.

This doesn't apply to the Y, but the great thing about the keyfob on the S was the handles had puddle lights that would light up the ground around the car as you walked up in the dark. Oh the things you don't need but miss when you don't have them anymore.

I'm going to test out not having it for a while and see how often the app doesn't pick up proximity and/or having to pull out the phone to unlock, kaycard or app, before I decide on the fob.
 

SkynetT10000

Member
Feb 26, 2021
42
58
Socal
Yes, i like it a lot, so many quick things can do. I walk up to car and it unlocks walk away and it locks. I hold the trunk button and it opens charge port or unlocks it so i can disconnect when charging, im sure it can do more things... $150 not a big deal, consider it an accessory for a better experience and convenience...
 
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wackojacko

Member
May 17, 2018
63
30
Toronto
I have a wallet on my phone which I plan to keep the card in, however, coming from an S with a keyfob, having it unlocked/lock as you're walking towards/away from the car is very convenient, no need to dig around for the phone just to get in the car. This is someone who's always doing something on the phone, but come driving time it's in a bag or pocket. This is why personally I'm debating the keyfob.

This doesn't apply to the Y, but the great thing about the keyfob on the S was the handles had puddle lights that would light up the ground around the car as you walked up in the dark. Oh the things you don't need but miss when you don't have them anymore.

I'm going to test out not having it for a while and see how often the app doesn't pick up proximity and/or having to pull out the phone to unlock, kaycard or app, before I decide on the fob.

don't get me wrong, the phone works perfectly for unlock as I approach. What I'm referring to with NFC is a backup if BT fails or if you have two Tesla's that use the phone as key, you need to switch cars in the app for the walk up to work. so If the 3 is in the App, and I try to unlock the Y, it is much quicker to tap the B pillar with my phone than open the app and swipe to switch cars. The app switches vehicles when you tap to unlock.

I have never considered a key fob during the almost 3 years with our 3. now that we got rid of the Leaf I don't need keys anymore. keypad on house and phone for car. no more jingle in my pocket :)
 

ChrgdTeCHick

Member
May 7, 2017
352
184
Florida
don't get me wrong, the phone works perfectly for unlock as I approach. What I'm referring to with NFC is a backup if BT fails or if you have two Tesla's that use the phone as key, you need to switch cars in the app for the walk up to work. so If the 3 is in the App, and I try to unlock the Y, it is much quicker to tap the B pillar with my phone than open the app and swipe to switch cars. The app switches vehicles when you tap to unlock.

I have never considered a key fob during the almost 3 years with our 3. now that we got rid of the Leaf I don't need keys anymore. keypad on house and phone for car. no more jingle in my pocket :)
Ah makes sense. Personally I never felt comfortable not using a keyfob and relying on the app. I don't know why, it has a low fail rate. But your example is a great one of the annoyance of switching vehicle to unlock if you drive both fairly consistently.

The only key I carried for the last 4 years was my S keyfob. So freeing to use keypads. I'll just have to see how I feel after a while of not having a keyfob. If I was going from another vehicle it wouldn't be an issue, I'm just used to the way the keyfob works with a tesla that it will be a somewhat backwards transition. If it was $50 I'd get it immediately. $150.... eh.....
 

MikeHolliday

Member
May 9, 2020
339
255
Worthington, Ohio
I have never had my phone fail with the Bluetooth as long as the phone is not locked. If you have a Samsung Android phone you can use the NFC Chip that is built into the phone just like a Key Card. So, if you have an Android phone it can be set to open the car 2 different ways. I had no idea until a Service Tech came to my home and while chatting he showed me how to set it up... I can have my phone to unlock with Bluetooth or slide the Phone down the Pillar and get the single horn or double horn just as if I am using the Key Card... Please excuse the raw unedited Youtube link below. So, why would you purchase the Key Cards when you essentially have one built into your phone.

 
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RedWhite19

Member
Aug 17, 2020
541
349
Los Angeles
I’ve been meaning to get one, particularly now that I have two Tesla’s. Sometimes, I’ve got the wrong car in the app and it won’t open unless I go to the Tesla app and go to the correct car. Or sometimes, the car doesn’t open when I have my phone open because the Bluetooth is not connecting. So, I’ll just end up ordering one.
 

SDM44

.
Aug 9, 2019
657
663
Los Angeles
I bought a key fob for my wife to use for the following reasons:

- much easier & faster to open & close the trunk & (powered) frunk when she's shopping
- still has passive entry capability so you don't need to lock or unlock from the fob
- wife doesn't want the Tesla app on her phone
- she parks in a business tower in downtown LA and has to give her car keys to the parking attendant every day, and giving the attendant a unique looking key fob is much easier (for the attendant to find her key and give it to her) when you have 20+ Model 3 & Y cars parked on the same level and they all have the same looking key cards in the attendant's key box

Sure it was a pricey investment, but we used it on our Model 3 and it'll work just fine on our Model Y.


FYI - if you get the Abstract silicone key fob cover (which is probably the best cover out there IMO), the rubber part that connects to the key ring is a bit suspect and I wouldn't trust it over time. Instead, I cut it off and got a Model X key chain rope lanyard that fits inside of the key fob so it's much more secure to hold your keys.

Tesla-Fob-Pocket-Key-Ring.jpg
 
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MikeHolliday

Member
May 9, 2020
339
255
Worthington, Ohio
I’ve been meaning to get one, particularly now that I have two Tesla’s. Sometimes, I’ve got the wrong car in the app and it won’t open unless I go to the Tesla app and go to the correct car. Or sometimes, the car doesn’t open when I have my phone open because the Bluetooth is not connecting. So, I’ll just end up ordering one.
If you have a Samsung Phone you can use it just like a Key Card on the Door Pillar with its NFC Chip... And If you are really nice to your SC they may give you a couple of Key Fobs like they did me...
 
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RedWhite19

Member
Aug 17, 2020
541
349
Los Angeles
If you have a Samsung Phone you can use it just like a Key Card on the Door Pillar with its NFC Chip... And If you are really nice to your SC they may give you a couple of Key Fobs like they did me...
I’ve got an iPhone. I can also walk up to my car with the phone in my pocket and it works. But sometimes it doesn’t. Not to mention, if I previously drove my Model Y and the next day I want to drive my Model 3, I’ve got to open the app and swipe to the car I want to operate.
 

EvilEvilPanda

Member
Jan 8, 2021
15
11
Pasadena, CA
Been using the fob for about two weeks. My definition of working is opening with just the first pull of the handle. In that respect, the fob works 95% of the time. For the other 5%, I have to pull it a second or third time. My iphone XR, in that case, only works about 80% of the time with occasions that forces me to open the tesla app to work, In my case, there would be at least one hiccup getting into my car every other day.

Even though the fob is still not perfect compared to a traditional smart key, using only the phone just drives me absolutely nuts. In fact, even though I will be splitting the MY with my wife 30/70 when school starts for the kids, having two fobs is worth the $300. To me, that's a better investment than the homelink module.
 

coleman567

Member
Nov 25, 2020
44
33
Houston
I have heard you never have this issue with keyfoob, so it might be worth it. I can live with 5% failture, is not that bad, I just make sure my phone is out of the pocket before I get into the Tesla
It was happening with my fob so often that support came out and verified that I am the problem... I back in most places so I am usually approaching from the rear, but according to Tesla I must be approaching the car too fast whilst keeping the fob in my right front pocket and trying to immediately open the door upon arrival which doesn't give the car time to detect the fob... The rep was able to recreate the issue by holding the fob in his hand behind his back (1 of 3 times he attempted) but that still seems ludicrous when the car automatically locks after I've walked 20' away with the fob so why does it need to be 3' from the door to automatically unlock?
 

ChrgdTeCHick

Member
May 7, 2017
352
184
Florida
It was happening with my fob so often that support came out and verified that I am the problem... I back in most places so I am usually approaching from the rear, but according to Tesla I must be approaching the car too fast whilst keeping the fob in my right front pocket and trying to immediately open the door upon arrival which doesn't give the car time to detect the fob... The rep was able to recreate the issue by holding the fob in his hand behind his back (1 of 3 times he attempted) but that still seems ludicrous when the car automatically locks after I've walked 20' away with the fob so why does it need to be 3' from the door to automatically unlock?
That's so odd. I never ever had a problem with the fob on my S, and I had it for 4 years. I'd carry it in a backpack, pocket, purse, anywhere and it always worked. I back in most of the time too. Wonder if the different tech they use on the Y fob is a factor.
 

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