Tesla FSD v12 Rolls Out to Employees With Update 2023.38.10 (Update: Elon Confirms)

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla has started rolling out FSD v12 to employees
Tesla has started rolling out FSD v12 to employees
Not a Tesla App

Elon Musk announced earlier this month that Tesla's Full Self-Driving (FSD) v12 would be released in two weeks. The usual timeframe reference Musk is famous for was met with skepticism. However, it seems that Tesla is right on track with its rollout.

We have learned through a trusted source that FSD v12 has started rolling out internally with Tesla update 2023.38.10.

Update: Musk has responded to our article on X, confirming that Tesla has indeed starting rolling out FSD v12 to employees.

FSD v12 is the update that is expected to remove "beta" from the title. The initial rollout to employees appears more limited in scale than previous updates. Considering the magnitude of the changes in this version, it makes sense to start slow.

Public Release

The timing of this internal release is close to two major Tesla events. The Cybertruck delivery event is just a few days away. Many eyes will be on the company during the event, allowing Tesla to possibly show the world its latest breakthrough. Alternatively, the highly anticipated holiday update, often regarded as the best update of the year, is expected to be released by 'Santa Musk' in the coming weeks, potentially featuring v12 as a significant addition.

Newer Features

The latest public FSD build, v11.4.7.3, is Tesla update 2023.27.7. This FSD build is several revisions behind the latest production builds, so it's nice to see that v12 will bring FSD beta testers back up to speed with some of the latest Tesla features such as Predictive Charger Availability, Faster Hazard Lights After a Crash, and other features included in updates 2023.32 and 2023.38.

As for FSD improvements, we haven't had a chance to see the release notes for FSD v12 yet. However, now that it has started going out to employees, it shouldn't be long before we find out all the FSD improvements included in this milestone release.

FSD v12: A Leap Forward with Neural Net Use

A significant change in v12 is eliminating over 300,000 lines of code previously governing FSD functions that controlled the vehicle, replaced by further reliance on neural networks. This transition means the system reduces its dependency on hard-coded programming. Instead, FSD v12 is using neural networks to control steering, acceleration, and braking for the first time. Up until now, neural networks have been limited to detecting objects and determining their attributes, but v12 will be the first time Tesla starts using neural networks for vehicle control.

The FSD v12 represents a significant leap in Tesla's FSD technology. Musk has described it as an "end-to-end AI", employing a "photon in, controls out" approach akin to human optical processing. This analogy underscores Tesla's ambition to replicate human-like decision-making capabilities in its vehicles.

Labeled as a "Baby AGI" (Artificial General Intelligence), the system is designed to perceive and understand the complexities of the real world. This philosophical and technological shift in AI-driven autonomy was vividly showcased during a live-streamed drive by Musk through Palo Alto, where the Model S demonstrated smooth and almost flawless navigation through various real-world scenarios, including construction zones, roundabouts, and traffic. That was three months ago; imagine how much the system has learned in 90 days.

Looking Forward: The Future of Tesla's AI Endeavors

The rollout of FSD v12 marks a critical point in Tesla's journey in AI and autonomous driving. It's not just about technological prowess but also about aligning AI with nuanced human behavior. With Musk's continued focus on AI, which is evident across his ventures, Tesla remains a crucial player in the EV market and the broader AI revolution.

As we await further details on the public release of FSD v12 and its potential showcase at the Cybertruck event, it's clear that Tesla is moving closer to a future where cars are not just self-driving but are also intelligent and responsive to the complexities of the real world.

Tesla Update 2024.20 Lets Matrix Headlights Adapt to Curves, Adds Supercharger Leaderboards and More

By Karan Singh

Tesla has been on a roll with updates recently, and now update 2024.20 was released to employees over the weekend. This update builds on the many features in the Spring Update and adds a few big improvements.

Adaptive Headlights

New updates to Adaptive Headlights are arriving for European cars with matrix headlights. The new update allows the headlights to adapt to curves in the road ahead of you, enabling better illumination. Having the adaptive headlights work for curves is the second major update for matrix headlights. Update 2024.8 added adaptive high-beam support, letting your high beams stay on longer by turning off select LEDs in the headlights.

Update 2024.2 first brought adaptive high beams to the new Model 3, before it was later introduced to older vehicles with matrix headlights. At this time, it’s not clear whether the improvements to headlights around curves will be exclusive to matrix headlights or also support the new Model 3.

How to Tell If You Have Matrix Headlights

How do you know if you have matrix headlights on your Tesla? On the outer edge of the headlight, there will be a large, round projector dome, like in the image below. If there isn’t a dome, those are standard non-matrix headlights.
Another way to tell is to run a stock light show while facing a wall. If the Tesla logo, in letters, pops up, you have matrix headlights.

Matrix headlights have a circular dome projector on the outer edge.
Matrix headlights have a circular dome projector on the outer edge.

For now, North America still does not have adaptive headlight support, mostly due to legislative and testing issues in the United States. The US recently approved adaptive headlights, and a Tesla employee mentioned they’re working on it. Canada has legalized adaptive headlights since 2018, so we see this deployed in North America at some point in the future.

Supercharger Races on Beach Buggy Racing 2

Tesla is still improving its Arcade functionality, with the addition of local leaderboards at Superchargers in Beach Buggy Racing 2. It appears that each individual Supercharger site will have its own leaderboard, which drivers can compete on while their cars charge. Tesla says there will also be special races to compete in this Beach Buggy Racing 2 update.

Tesla owners can plug in and play with a controller, the touchscreen, or their vehicle’s steering wheel. Thanks to steer-by-wire on the Cybertruck, the actual wheels on the truck won’t move like they do on other Tesla models when playing the game.

We continue to hope that future refreshes to the S, 3, X, and Y will eventually receive steer-by-wire as well, as the feature has quite a few unique uses, whether driving or parked.

Autopilot Strikes and Suspension

An updated Autopilot Strike system, similar to the one that is on Tesla’s upcoming FSD V12.4 update, is on 2024.20 as well. At five strikes, users will be suspended from the use of Autopilot like before, but now Tesla will remove a strike for each 7-day period the driver goes without receiving a strike.

FSD 12.4 also improves vision-based monitoring and removes the steering wheel nag, but that’s not in this latest Tesla update, but will likely be added in the future.

Tesla tends to release new Autopilot features in their FSD updates before releasing them to the wider public for regular Autopilot use.

Hot Weather Improvements

The last set of user-end improvements coming in 2024.20 will be related to hot weather, the opposite of 2024.2.6’s cold weather update. This set of changes intends to improve AUTO mode HVAC performance in hot weather, helping to cool down the cabin faster, while also maintaining comfort at lower noise levels.

There have been several updates in the last six months to Tesla’s HVAC systems, all helping to deliver a quieter, more comfortable experience, with one of the last major ones introducing cool-down or warm-up periods before blowing air into the car cabin.

Tesla Software in China Shows 'Employee FSD Beta Program' as Tesla Prepares for Launch

By Karan Singh

Chris Zeng, a Chinese Tesla content creator on X, recently posted an image with Tesla’s Spring Update – 2024.14, with the words “Employee FSD Beta Program: Registered.”

He also confirmed that although this text appears in the vehicle, there are no actual FSD features enabled yet.

FSD Beta Coming to China

Recently, Tesla began to offer Enhanced Autopilot subscriptions in China, and Chinese corporate giant Baidu announced that it will be providing enhanced 3D mapping for Tesla vehicles as well.

On a recent trip to China, Elon Musk spoke with Premier Li Qiang on the rollout of FSD to China. Later follow-ups said that “it may be possible [for FSD to arrive in China] very soon”.

FSD Shadow Mode

Tesla’s cars can operate FSD in Shadow Mode – which means that the vehicle is running FSD in the background without any real output except analytics. This is a common software practice that lets software engineers compare the process they’re testing against an existing known output and compare the results. In this case, Tesla compares what FSD would do to what the driver does, and any discrepancies are reported back to be analyzed.

With this information, we could guess that FSD has been operating in Shadow Mode in China for a while, and this new Employee FSD Beta Program will be the beginning of employee testing in China, providing even more data for the end-to-end process that is FSD V12.

FSD Beta, not Supervised FSD

Most interestingly, the photo refers to “FSD Beta” instead of “Supervised,” which Tesla started using with FSD 12.3.3 in March 2024. This could imply that FSD in China isn’t ready for a “Supervised” variant, and it’s considered to be in more of a testing stage.

In the photo, we can also see that it says “Wave 1,” which is what Tesla calls the group of employees who receive “pre-release” Tesla updates on their personal vehicles. Wave 1 serves as a final test for software before its released to the public. In most cases, the software is rolled out publicly within a couple of weeks, however, there have been times when bugs are found and Tesla releases revision before a public release.

Release Date

Prior to larger releases here in North America, we generally see Tesla ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) testing and verification vehicles on the roads, which have not yet been spotted in China.

Whether these vehicles will be needed in China is up for debate, but once FSD features begin rolling out to employees, we should get a better idea of a public release in China.

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