Elon: Smarter Summon and Autopark coming. Will it use dead-reckoning?

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla to release smarter summon and Autopark
Tesla to release smarter summon and Autopark
Tesla

Tesla's Autopilot and AI team must be burning the 3 am oil again. Elon Musk took to Twitter to tell the world the expectations for his team on some significant projects. He tweeted: Note, Autopilot/AI team is also working on Optimus and (actually smart) summon/autopark, which have end of month deadlines.

The end of the month is not too far away, so time is ticking down to complete these extraordinarily complex and revolutionary projects. Optimus, the highly anticipated humanoid robot, will be revealed at Tesla's AI Day on September 30.

If that's not enough, the team has to improve two aspects of the Autopilot system. Clearly, the CEO is not impressed with the program. It is called Smart Summon, but Musk must not think the title is too accurate as he states "actually smart" in his tweet. In addition, users have pointed out that their Teslas can struggle in parking lots. But, to be fair, who hasn't struggled in parking lots?

When using Smart Summon, Tesla uses your phone's GPS as a target destination. Users can also put in a location; the vehicle is supposed to navigate to that point by steering around obstacles. Smart Summon is to work when the user is within 20 feet of the car. However, the manual states, "You must maintain a clear line of sight between you and Model (S, 3, X, Y) and closely monitor the vehicle and its surroundings at all times."

In addition, the same webpage has six warnings and one caution to users. These include details such as the cameras must be clean, it must be used on paved surfaces, it may not stop for all objects, and it currently needs adequate cell service and GPS data.

Autopark also has several warnings on its user manual webpage. This program assists the driver in finding parking, both perpendicular and parallel. However, unlike Smart Summon, the user must be in the car before letting the Tesla take over.

Navigate without Maps

Musk previously hinted at a major improvement that's coming: the ability for FSD beta to navigate roads with no map data. The vehicle will be able to navigate to a specific GPS point or pinned location (ex: rural roads), says Musk.

Dead Reckoning Navigation (Navigating without GPS)

Elon has also alluded to the fact that Tesla is working on the AI’s ability to complete 'dead reckoning' navigation (navigating only on “inertial measurements, wheel movement & vision”).

Elon gave underground parking garages as an example of where FSD would need this ability to navigate without GPS, map data or cell service. The car will be able to do this by using its last known GPS location and then determining its future location using only a compass, wheel movement and speed.

Many Twitter users were trying to figure out what Musk referred to with these programs. Will the car drop off its passengers and park itself (reverse summon will offer three options)? How will it navigate difficult parking lots with unpredictable pedestrians and drivers?

We hope these questions and plenty of others will be answered on September 30.

Tesla tops 40,000 Superchargers; new site to have four solar canopies

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla's Quartzsite Supercharger will have four solar canopies
Tesla's Quartzsite Supercharger will have four solar canopies
Tesla

Tesla now has 40,000 Supercharger stations worldwide, and more are in the works, including a massive 88-stall facility in a small town in Arizona. @MarcoRPTesla, who has a knack for finding Supercharger plans, tweeted the detailed construction project. The drawings show 20 prefabricated Supercharger units, two trailer-friendly stalls, and four solar canopies.

Quartzsite, Arizona, with a population of 2,413, is the location of the huge Supercharging station. Incredibly, it is being built right across the road from a 36-stall Supercharger. So why is there now one Supercharger for every 20 people in Quartzsite? Interstate 10 runs through the small town, which is at the intersection of U.S. Route 95 and Arizona State Route 95 with I-10.

Tesla's Quartzsite Supercharger will have four solar canopies
Tesla's Quartzsite Supercharger will have four solar canopies
Tesla

This location is approximately three and a half hours away from Las Vegas, Nevada, San Diego, California, and Los Angeles, California. It is also two hours from Phoenix, Arizona. Tourism is the main economic driver of the small town.

Tesla recently asked followers of its @TeslaCharging Twitter account to submit locations where Superchargers are needed. This location makes sense with the amount of traffic going through the area. It also has very little precipitation, which means those solar canopies will be powered up by the sun. That is another long-term vision of the company, to have solar and battery packs at Supercharging locations.

Also, the company plans to allow non-Teslas at its Supercharger locations. That alone will increase the demand at hubs like Quartzsite.

It’s hard to believe the Supercharger network was launched in 2012. A decade later, they are turning into a more common sight around the world. According to the company: Superchargers can add up to 200 miles (322 kilometres) of range in just 15 minutes.

In September, 420 Tesla projects were announced, including a 164-stall Supercharger hub on the I-5 corridor located in Coalinga, California. That will be the world’s largest Tesla Supercharger location. But that is nothing compared to reports of the largest EV charging location in the world, located in China’s hi-tech city of Shenzhen. There is an electric taxi charging station with a total of 637 fast chargers.

The largest EV charging location in the world with 637 stalls
The largest EV charging location in the world with 637 stalls
@DKurac/Twitter

Tesla's Full Self-Driving Beta is now available to everyone in the US and Canada

By Lennon Cihak
Tesla Full Self-Driving is available to anyone in North America
Tesla Full Self-Driving is available to anyone in North America
DirtyTesla/Twitter

The moment many Tesla owners have waited for has arrived: Full Self-Driving Beta is now available to anyone in North America who has requested it, according to Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Musk took to his newly acquired social media platform Twitter to announce the news.

“Tesla Full Self-Driving Beta is now available to anyone in North America who requests it from the car screen, assuming you have bought this option,” writes Musk. “Congrats to [the] Tesla Autopilot/AI team on achieving a major milestone!”

This historic moment comes just days after Tesla began rolling out its latest version of FSD Beta, version 10.69.3.1, which is version 2022.36.20. It includes feature updates like a revamped Energy App, alternate routes, blind spot camera location, and more.

Now, this version is going wide to “anyone in North America who requests it.”

To receive FSD Beta you'll just need to request it in your vehicle under Controls > Autopilot. There is no longer a minimum safety score to achieve and everyone should receive the beta shortly after requesting it, as long as you've bought or subscribed to FSD Beta in the U.S. or Canada.

There are a few requirements for you to receive Tesla's FSD Beta. Your vehicle will need to have Tesla's FSD computer, known as hardware 3.0 or above. It also currently requires your vehicle to be on a 2022.36 update or below.

If your vehicle is on one of the 2022.40 updates, then you'll need to wait until the next beta update since the current beta (v10.69.3.1) is based on 2022.36 and Tesla doesn't normally allow vehicles to roll back to a previous version.

Some Model S and Model X vehicles may require a camera upgrade before being eligible for FSD Beta.

Tesla's next FSD Beta, v11, which is still being tested internally may also be released to some external testers starting today. A few days ago Musk confirmed on Twitter that version 11 would be widened “before Thanksgiving." FSD Beta v11 includes a unified tech stack for city and highway Autopilot use and is expected to go to a wide release sometime next month.

When it comes to FSD Beta updates, Tesla starts distributing to employees first for testing and going wider as they collect data and fix bugs. Then, based on a number of factors, Tesla broadens up distribution to more owners. However, this may soon change when FSD Beta gets incorporated into all Tesla software builds. This may happen with FSD Beta v11.

For owners new to FSD Beta, it's surely a day a lot of us have been waiting for and a monumental moment for Tesla. However, it doesn't stop there, it looks like we'll soon all have access to the next big update, FSD Beta v11.

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View the release notes for the upcoming version 2022.44.

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Take a look at features that Elon Musk has said will be coming soon.

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