My shiny new Tesla Model 3 has a bunch of neat features. One of those is the ability to display the calendar from your phone, so that you know what appointments you have coming up. It even does the cool thing of transferring location to the sat nav.
The trouble is, it doesn’t work. At least it doesn’t work if, like me a millions of other people, you don’t use the default Google calendar app.
I think I have a workaround.
Connecting other calendars to Google Calendars
I have 4 different calendars and they are all connected to Microsoft services and accessed via the Outlook app I installed. Android, for some reason, allows almost any app to be set as the default; but not for calendars. Tesla, for whatever reason, only integrates with the default Google calendar. So I looked for a different approach to expose my multiple Microsoft calendars.
With many other things there is a magical ability to Share something to the Tesla app and have it miraculously appear in the car. Sadly, this wasn’t true of calendar events.
I have battled with this for a couple of weeks; I couldn’t find a solution online and Tesla forums only had a hint of a solution. However, a hint was all that was needed. Since Android won’t let you change the default calendar, perhaps it is possible to add other calendars to the default…
Start with Google Calendars in the browser
Google calendars provides an option to add Other Calendars from the browser, while both personal Outlook.com and Microsoft 365 provide ICS URLs for the calendars. This is what I did:
- Open Google Calendars from: https://calendar.google.com/
- Click the Add Other Calendars + button on the left nav and choose the From URL option
- Open your Outlook Online calendar
- For Outlook.com (personal) calendars, go to https://outlook.live.com/calendar and click the Settings cog icon at the top right, then View All Settings.
- For M365 (business) calendars, go to https://outlook.office.com/mail/options/calendar/Shared (you shouldn’t need to do the Settings cog step)
- With Calendar selected in Settings, select Shared Calendars. Half way down the page there is a Publish a Calendar section. Choose your desired calendar from the drop down (you probably only have 1)
- Set your permissions. You probably need the most permissive option.
- Click Publish. Now left click on the URL and choose Copy Link form the menu
- Back Google Calendars, past the copied IRL into the URL of Calendar field.
- Click Add calendar and wait a minute for it to confirm it’s been added. It will appear in the left nav; click it and rename it to something useful
Set up your Android app
Now grab your Android phone and open the Google Calendar.
- Click the pancake menu at the top left and go to settings. You should see the calendars you added appearing there. It can take a few minutes, and you may need to do up Refresh first.
- Press on each of your new calendars and turn on Sync (you can rename them here if needed).
Fire up the Tesla
Finally, you can go back to your Tesla, make sure Bluetooth etc are turned on so that the phone and car can sync.
Open the calendar. The shortcut is to press the date at the top of the touchscreen
Wait a few minutes (it’s not very fast) and you will, hopefully, see the full set of calendars appear, from multiple calendars.
Let me know if that worked for you, if you have any improvements or other cool tips.