TezLab Review: The “Best” 3rd-Party Tesla App or Not Even Close?

By Zac Ludicrous •  Updated: 08/10/21 •  12 min read

“With more than 1,500 positive votes on both Google Play and the App Store, there’s gotta be something special about this app,” I thought to myself.

Out of those compelling reviews grew the curiosity to review TezLab and share all my insights with you.

I published a detailed Teslafi review recently.

TezLab is its most noteworthy competitor—and it has a huge advantage: it’s free.

But is the “free” version purely bait for their paid plans?

Or does TezLab actually make all the paid Tesla apps obsolete?

Let’s find out.

What Is TezLab—and Why You Should Care?

TezLab can be described as your Tesla journal.

Just like journaling has been a trend because it brings awareness to your everyday habits, TezLab logs data from your driving and charging sessions to provide insight into your vehicle’s performance.

Is your car experiencing any negative trends in battery degradation?

Which trips have been the most efficient recently—and why?

Need to know the exact amount of business miles you put in last month?

TezLab helps you answer these questions.

Unlike other apps, however, the main TezLab’s features are free.

That makes everyone wonder whether privacy is the price to pay to use the app.

If the App Is Free, Is TezLab Selling Your Data?

“Free” platforms tend to rely on your data to thrive.

Think Facebook.

With information about your location, driving habits, travel history, and more, TezLab could become extremely profitable selling your data.

On the surface, it’s reasonable to assume that is the ultimate plan.

In fact, it’s what Matt from Undecided said in his TezLab review:

“It doesn’t cost you any money, but… you will be paying with your privacy.”

However, the way TezLab makes money is still evolving. And it does seem like they intend to avoid questionable privacy practices.

They’re using the typical freemium model. Getting in is free and you have the option to unlock more benefits by subscribing to their paid plan, TezLab Pro.

Greater storage (access to historical data vs. just 7 rolling days) and additional features are TezLab’s Pro benefits as of this writing.

They also have a “Founder Series” one-time contribution that unlocks lifetime unlimited access. This is a limited-time offer, and the minimum contribution is US$150.

These unique initiatives may be a sign that users aren’t opting in for the paid version as much.

It could also imply a change in strategy in the near future, a realization that the data game is the game to play to satisfy shareholders.

Or it might simply be an additional funding source while they attract more users and figure out a business model that works without sacrificing anyone’s privacy.

Only time will tell.

“Wait… Do I Have to Give my Tesla.com Login Information to TezLab?”

TezLab needs access to the data provided by your car, which means one scary thing…

You need to provide your login information.

(Yup, the same info you use to open and drive your car!)


Is this actually safe? 🤔

First, I’d encourage you to do your own due diligence on the company and its team.

Ben Sullins, a popular Tesla YouTuber, is one of TezLab’s team members, and in his video walkthrough, he emphasizes the fact that TezLab does NOT store anyone’s Tesla.com login information.

Your credentials are simply used to request an API token from Tesla, which, for non-techies, means you’re opening the door for the two apps to talk to each other.

By logging out, you destroy the token that allowed the apps to communicate.

Your login information is NEVER accessible to anyone at any point during the entire process.

Randy Spencer, a tech-savvy Tesla owner, corroborates these facts about TezLab’s security:

“Someday Tesla will allow people to log in like Google and Facebook, where the interface is from their servers, so people feel confidence that their password is not being stolen.

This is the same way [TezLab] works now, where the password is sent directly to Tesla, but it’s less obvious when you appear to be giving the password to the TezLab app.”

As long as you’re using properly developed, well-known third-party apps like TezLab, hacking incidents are unheard of.

The security risk is virtually non-existent.

The Most Helpful TezLab Feature for Tesla Owners

Whether you’re a new or a savvy EV owner, range anxiety can become very real when you’re making a 400-plus-mile road trip.

Unfortunately, you can’t always rely on Tesla’s rated range.

It tends to assume the best driving conditions and offer an inaccurate estimate.

TezLab can predict a more accurate range by considering many more data points (like weather and elevation).

“TezLab has really helped educate me on what I’ll actually get in terms of range.”

Early user feedback according to TezLab’s CEO

Ben Schippers, TezLab CEO and owner of 12-year-old custom software development company HappyFunCorp, discussed TezLab plans in more detail in a TechPath interview.

If you’re curious to learn more about TezLab’s future business prospects (and their implications for you as the end user), here are other timelines to consider watching:

App Walkthough & Other Unique Features

As discussed above, Ben Sullins, the data scientist behind TezLab, released a 10-minute walkthrough of the app.

App walkthrough starts at 1:57.

I’d encourage you to watch at least the first 3 minutes, from 1:57 to 5:00. It’ll give you more context for what I will discuss next.

Though the app has been improved since then, it gives you a good feel of what TezLab is all about.

For more details about specific features of the app I’m most impressed with, read on.

Easy-to-Use, Beautiful User Interface

Tezlab Review & User Interface
Look at those graphs and that clean interface…

If you read my Teslafi review, you know how cringe-worthy every interface was.

From their homepage to their main dashboard, it all looked a bit too… 1999.

With both a data scientist and a UI/UX designer on board, it’s quite obvious that the experience with TezLab is quite different.

Though every data app provides insights through its data points, TezLab has focused on presenting that data in a way that’s easy to understand—and it’s definitely appreciated.

Charging Sessions’ Carbon Intensity & Offset

As EV enthusiasts, some of us are trying to reduce our carbon footprint.

Unless you have Powerwalls and solar panels on your roof, EVs can still have a significant carbon impact depending on where and when you plug in.

TezLab has done an incredible effort to make owners aware of these emissions and their source.

Better yet, TezLab gives you the option to plant trees to actively combat the emissions produced by the electricity your vehicle is using.

So not only will you see all your charging sessions in detail, but also you get to offset the impact your driving may have on the planet.

Superchagers “Busy-ness” & Community Reviews

Ever wondered of the times a particular Supercharger is least busy so you can avoid waiting for hours on end?

Wonder no more.

Tezlab Review: The Supercharger feature
Credit to TechCrunch.

Directly partnered with Tesla so feedback is heard, TezLab enables owners to comment on the current status of a Supercharger.

Whether you want to know how reliable the Supercharger has been, when is the best time to visit, or whether there are bathrooms nearby, TezLab will showcase that information as Tesla owners who have visited the site provide such details.

This alone compels many to download the app and give it a shot.


These are just some of the unique features that make TezLab stand out.

As most serious app developers, improvements are being released through regular updates.

If you’re curious and want to know more about the app, TezLab has a massive FAQ page where they answer every question you could possibly think of. Feel free to check it out.

TezLab Reviews: What Others Have to Say

No matter where you go, the overall sentiment of users is very positive—almost overwhelmingly so.

Within Google Play, TezLab has 1,800 positive ratings and counting.

And within the App Store, both the overall rating and the number of reviews are even higher.

A 70,000-mile Tesla owner by the username “CYBRLFT” chimed in with his experience with the app.

Over a year with TezLab.” (Review)

This platform has been an incredible source of data for myself as I drive over 70,000 miles a year in my Tesla. I’ve been able to log my actual battery health and capacity over long time scales and extreme use cases.

It’s awesome to garner reliable data around actual range, real world efficiency and even the INCREDIBLE ability to plant trees to actively combat carbon production from charging the vehicle. There’s just so much good information and a fun way to get achievements and “mayorship” of charging stations.

More than worth the price for the pro version and excited for future integration of different types of EVs like the Mach E and ID4. I really hope this happens.

Similar positive experiences are being shared at Reddit and forums, though these users tend to be familiar and/or prefer other apps like TeslaMate, Stats for Tesla, and others.

How these alternatives compare to TezLab will be discussed in detail later in this article.

TezLab Apps & Pricing

As of this writing, both iOS and Android apps are free to download.

Interesting widgets have been developed for smartwatches too.

Regardless of the operating system, TezLab Pro costs $5.99 a month or $49.99 a year.

This paid plan grants you access to more functionalities and all your historical data.

Considering some of the savings of an electric vehicle (like fuel), many owners easily justify this expense.

TezLab vs. Teslafi

Telzab Review: comparing it to Teslafi

Teslafi’s leadership in the space has been challenged by TezLab. But as of this writing, Teslafi seems to be the community favorite due to its wider feature set.

The biggest difference between these apps is the interface and all the visual elements.

TezLab presents the data beautifully (which improves the understanding and speed at which you interpret the data).

Teslafi, on the other hand, has a very basic design… and that’s putting it lightly.

I claimed on my Teslafi review that their website looks very 1999…

Well, they haven’t changed their website—and I haven’t changed my mind.

Many owners stick to Teslafi regardless because of other very beneficial features like command scheduling (e.g., start HVAC at 7:30 a.m.).

Teslafi doesn’t have a free plan, only a free trial.

Many argue that Teslafi is still better—though TezLab seems to be catching up quickly.

TezLab vs. TeslaMate

Many developers and tech-savvy Tesla owners argue that TeslaMate is the superior app to use in many ways, including customization, phantom drain, and security.

Here are just a few comments these owners have shared online:

“You might want to give TeslaMate a try. All locally hosted, so less risky IMHO.”

Roy W. in response to the fear of inserting your Tesla credentials

“TeslaMate is the best I’ve found. It’s free, self-hosted and infinitely customizable. It’s also very good on phantom drain from what I’ve seen”

u/MarksTech on TeslaModel3 Reddit

If you don’t have a technical background though, forget it. You probably want to stick to an app like TezLab, which is designed for a seamless user experience.

TeslaMate’s installation guide is daunting enough to discourage most people from even trying it out.

TezLab vs. Stats for Tesla

At first glance, the Stats app looks like a worthy TezLab alternative.

Many Tesla owners recommend the app (and benefit from their Apple Watch integration).

It has one big pro and con though:

Some owners also complained about Stats keeping their car awake, draining more precious energy than they expected.

However, it’s still worth the investment for most folks as it holds ~3,000 positive ratings (4.7 stars on average) on the App Store.

Described as a Teslafi “at reduced functionality,” Stats for Tesla could be worth trying out if you hate subscriptions of any kind.

TezLab vs. TM-Spy

Skip ahead to 3:48 to look at some of the TM-Spy reports.

Here’s the challenge I have comparing TezLab with TM-spy:

TM-Spy’s focus is exclusively on battery health and degradation.

Created by the developers of the battery data reporting app for Nissan Leaf owners, Leaf Spy, TM-Spy aims to provide extremely detailed and technical battery insights to Tesla owners (state of charge, battery voltage, etc.).

Unless you’re an engineer or someone with a background in electrical work, these reports have limited practicality in my opinion.

If you’re specifically looking for battery health and degradation reports, then you’re free to try TM-Spy out (only available on Android).

If not, consider the apps discussed above.

Final Thoughts: Is TezLab the “Best” 3rd-Party Tesla App or Not Even Close?

Ultimately, TezLab is on track to take away the throne from Teslafi, which has been Tesla owners’ favorite data app for years.

If you appreciate beautiful and easy-to-understand visual graphics, definitely give TezLab a try.

Not only are they continuously improving their app, but also, the management’s heart seems to be in the right place.

TezLab’s business model is evolving—and it’s encouraging to see that, despite their freemium model, they’re staying away from misleading data privacy practices.

Zac Ludicrous

Mechanical engineer by profession. TSLA shareholder before the hype. EV enthusiast all day long. Zac enjoys learning about the future of battery technology, autonomy, and EVs. He considers Tesla Model 3 the most important vehicle of the 21st century -- and is in a quest to improve the ownership experience of every Model 3 owner he possibly can.

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