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Tesla, a Family Company?!

Jessica Barfield

Elon Musk is a great entrepreneur and inventor, but what is he up to now? We are all familiar with Musk’s recent successes with Tesla, and SpaceX, but is Musk now interested in developing innovative safety technologies that could directly benefit families? The answer is yes, it turns out that Musk wants to use sensors to make cars safer for children.

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Cars that are safer for children! That’s a laudable goal, but is this the same company that recently burst upon the market with really “cool” and “green” electric cars designed to appeal to young, hip, and environmentally conscious buyers? It could be that Tesla is moving away from the totally “cool guy” persona of its electric cars, to a car with family-friendly features that could appeal to buyers with young kids. After all, many parents are sensitive to environmental issues and could prove to be a valuable customer base for Tesla. The word cloud below, generated with Salesforce’s Social Studio software from the Adam Brown Social Media Command Center, shows specific words related to Telsa which appear in textual data when Tesla is used as the keyword in the search over the last seven days. The word cloud reveals that batteries, no surprise here since Tesla manufactures electric cars, is a commonly associated word with Tesla, but interestingly, some other keywords are related to cost indicating that price is a factor to consider with Tesla cars (and families are very sensitive to a car’s price). Moving forward it will be interesting to see if the word cloud changes as new safety technologies are integrated into Tesla cars and families become a target of Tesla’s marketing plans.

So just what are Tesla’s plans to make cars safer for kids and where are they in the process? Telsa requested permission from the Federal Communications Commission to approve to market and use a motion-senor in their cars that have the potential to prevent children from being left behind, for example, in hot cars. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicated that more than 50 children died in 2018 and 2019 when they were left behind in cars. Of those incidents, 54% occurred because someone forgot that a child was left in the car.

The use of technology, for example, sensors to detect cars on the highway and pedestrians who may be in danger, represents more and more AI being placed in cars. Elon Musk seems to be a driver of this future and families may benefit.