Thanks to Kim Hansen and their Auth app for Tesla iOS app, I’ve been able to update all my Tesla shortcuts and make them operational again. This free app handles Tesla’s latest authentication flow to generate the access token required for API usage.
Back in January 2021, Tesla changed how authentication with their API works. Instead of performing a single API call that passed along the username and password, the new authentication flow is a redirect-based sign-on (SSO) approach using OAuth 2.0. This is the same sort of process as signing into an app or website using your Twitter or Google account—you are redirected to a web page that you log in and then grant permission to access. It’s an additional layer of security that keeps your account safe and supports multi-factor authentication (MFA).
Developers building third-party Tesla apps have been able to support this and build the functionality needed to authenticate, and therefore access your car. However, Shortcuts is much more limited and, for now at least, can’t be used to complete this flow. Thankfully, developer Kim Hansen launched a free app, Auth app for Tesla, specifically to generate access tokens using Tesla’s new authentication process. This app handles authentication and provides a shortcut action that shortcuts can use to get the access token.
I’ve updated all my Tesla shortcuts to use this app. While it does mean you need to install the app and sign in to your Tesla account first, my shortcuts no longer need to handle authentication. The Tesla Settings shortcut is no longer required and is now deprecated.
Even though my Tesla shortcuts work again, I actually recommend using Kim’s other app, Watch for Tesla ($9.99), and its support for Shortcuts instead. The app originally started out as an Apple Watch app but, after Tesla’s API changes, Kim launched a companion iPhone app so users could log in. Since then, the iOS app has added useful features like widgets and shortcut actions.
As a result, what requires multiple steps in my shortcuts can be done in a single action. For example, my Tesla Battery Status shortcut has 38 actions. A similar shortcut using Watch app for Tesla can do it in just a single action.
I’ve been using the app for several months to control my Tesla from an Apple Watch and find myself using the iOS app and its available shortcut actions instead of my own shortcuts.
I intend to keep my shortcuts around and update them as necessary but I recommend using Watch for Tesla instead. Trust me, ten bucks for this app is a steal and it supports a developer who made it possible for me to make these shortcuts functional again.