Tesla v11 software has huge UI update with drag strip and quick controls

By Nuno Cristovao

Over the past few years Tesla has released a major version of their car's software every year (v10 update, v9 update). This year we have been anticipating version 11. Elon Musk has teased it several times and has said that it will include features we've been wanting and features we didn't know we wanted.

The past few Tesla releases have been unusual and have only contained minor changes and bug fixes as Tesla appears to be keeping features in v11 hidden.

The anticipation has been building and now it looks like v11 has been leaked on a redesigned Model S test vehicle.

A major focus of this release appears to be personalization. When examining the UI, a lot of the elements appear to be customizable, where a user could possibly choose which icons or apps they'd like to show up. Elon Musk has previously tweeted that Tesla would allow multiple layouts in the future. He could have been hinting at these features in v11.

In the first image we can see this new tile-like interface, where you will presumingly be able to select which tiles you'd like to appear. For example, you may choose to have Music, Car Visualizations, Maps, Calendar, Energy Graph and many others. It'll be interesting to see how many choices Tesla really offers here and how they adapt this to other vehicles.

When we take a closer look at the bottom bar which normally houses a consistent car navigation and is the main way to get to climate controls, seat heaters and other apps, it looks like this will also become customizable. From the image we can see that the nav no longer takes up the full width of the screen and that in this image the seat heaters are right next to one another, which is very different from what Tesla has offered in the past.

There are now many apps and features in Tesla vehicles where some of them now require multiple taps to get to, and making this navigation customizable makes a lot of sense. For example if a user relies on the Phone app heavily, they will now be able to access it with one-tap instead of two. Like-wise, if you don't live in a cold climate, it's almost silly to have seat heaters and the rear window defroster take up multiple spaces in this prime real estate area.

We have recently seen buttons removed or moved around in recent updates. One such example is that the Voice Commands button has been removed and is currently only accessible through the buttons on the steering wheel, leaving the passenger without a way to use voice commands. We expect this button to return with v11.

The former top strip which contained car information and quick actions such as the time, Bluetooth, HomeLink and other functions have been moved and appear as a vertical strip on the left side of the screen.

It looks like right beneath this, we will see another big feature which appears to be a "Quick Menu," which will allow you to access the car's most often used features. Upon tapping it you will be presented with quick-function buttons such as lock car, open frunk, open glove box, display brightness, mirror and steering wheel adjustments and others.

Some of these features were fairly accessible before, but others required digging through the Car Controls menu, so this should make changing some settings much quicker. There doesn't appear to be a clear indication in this menu, but given the same square tile-like buttons, we would also expect these tiles to be customizable.

We also get a quick-peek at some of the other car menus. It looks like this particular version of the car (remember this is a refreshed Model S, but unclear whether it's Plaid or not), will also feature a "Drag Strip Mode." It's not clear which models this will apply to but it appears to be a new launch control system.

Continuing looking at this menu, a few other things stick out. We can see there is an option for "Smart Shift," which will allow the car to shift into drive or reverse for you. We knew this feature would be included in the refreshed Model S / X, but it's certainly possible that Tesla will bring this feature to all existing AP 2+ vehicles. We wouldn't necessarily expect it, but it's certainly possible. We also recently discovered how this feature will work.

We also see that there is a new option to turn on/off "Media on Drive," which gives you control whether you'd like the media player to automatically open when you put the car into drive.

The menu on the left looks very familiar with some minor changes. We no longer have the Quick Settings option at the top, which the Quick Menu from the home screen seems to have replaced. We also see a new "Trips," tab, which could be for more precise navigation settings, and possibly allowing for multi-stop destinations (way-points), which Elon Musk said was coming last September.

There are sure to be many more features included in this huge v11 release, but these are the major features we can see looking through these few images.

Some of these features will be slightly different on other vehicles as Tesla has to adapt them to work on a vertical screen for previous Model S / X vehicles and also make adjustments for the Model 3 / Y which need to include car visualizations on the main display.

We are all super excited for this highly anticipated release which appears to focus heavily on personalization.

In 2019 Tesla released v10, which included many new features such as Tesla Theater and many others. You can view the full list of v10 features here. The year before Tesla released v9 that contained major updates such as Navigate on Autopilot, Dashcam and many others as well.

From what we have seen so far, v11 appears to be just a feature packed. We can not wait.

Tesla update v11
Tesla software v11

Update: Tesla released v11 of their software and many other new features in the 2021 Holiday Update. The holiday update was released with version 2021.44.25.

Tesla Superchargers, Patents, and Autopilot Opened Up for Competition

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla is offering up its patents in exchange for other manufacturers' patents
Tesla is offering up its patents for an exchange

Tesla has signaled a more open approach by allowing other automakers to access its Supercharger network. This move, spurred on by a groundbreaking deal with Ford, is more than a simple act of corporate benevolence. Superchargers, now a significant profit center for Tesla, could potentially revolutionize the electric vehicle charging infrastructure by making it universally accessible.

Patents Unleashed: A Closer Look

Tesla has also made strides in the world of intellectual property, opening up select patents to other automakers. This move echoes a similar step taken nearly a decade ago when Tesla announced an open-source approach to its patents. However, the details warrant attention. Tesla isn't giving away these patents out of pure altruism. There's an important caveat; Tesla requires a cross-license deal, effectively asking for access to the other automakers' patents in return. Critics argue that this does not constitute "free" access. It's a strategic maneuver aimed at mutual growth rather than unilateral generosity.

FSD and Autopilot: A Bold Proposition

Adding to the mix, Tesla's CEO Elon Musk announced the possibility of licensing Autopilot and Full Self-Driving (FSD) technologies to other automakers. This move could transform the landscape of autonomous driving by making Tesla's advanced technologies more widely accessible. However, the practical implementation is a complex process. Past discussions about licensing self-driving technology to other automakers have not materialized, indicating potential hurdles ahead.

An Industry Gamechanger

While the recent developments have generated much buzz, the long-term implications for Tesla and the electric vehicle industry remain unclear. Directly licensing technologies and working with companies that have designed them is a viable way to accelerate technological adoption. Tesla's moves could pave the way for more partnerships akin to its early collaborations with Daimler and Toyota. However, the willingness and ability of other automakers to integrate Tesla's technology remain to be seen.

The overarching narrative here aligns with Tesla's mission statement to help accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. By allowing broader access to its technologies, Tesla stands to propel the entire industry forward, even if it potentially narrows its competitive edge. But as Musk stated, "Patents do not define technology leadership...but rather by the ability of a company to attract and motivate the world's most talented engineers."

Whether this bold gambit will yield the intended results or backfire remains a question only time will answer. For now, Tesla continues to push boundaries, challenging the status quo in its relentless pursuit of a sustainable future.

Tesla Gears Up to Enhance Service Mode: New Features Unveiled in Upcoming Software Update

By Kevin Armstrong
Tesla is making improvements to its Service Mode
Tesla is making improvements to its Service Mode

In the ongoing quest to deliver advanced vehicular technology, Tesla never fails to surprise. Tesla enthusiasts have new reasons to rejoice as a host of features are set to augment Service Mode in an upcoming software update.

Pioneering Enhancements: From Diagnostics to Calibrations

With every update, Tesla's futuristic touch becomes more evident. Michal Gapinski, creator of the Tesla Android Project, which famously enables Apple CarPlay in Teslas through a web-based solution, has shared some upcoming features to Tesla's Service Mode with us. In a forthcoming software update, Service Mode will house new diagnostic screens for seat belts, the HVAC system, and what appears to be a new window calibration screen. These screens promise to provide a comprehensive, accessible system check-up that offers valuable insights into your Tesla's health.

Sealt Belt Service Menu

Tesla is making improvements to its Service Mode
Tesla is making improvements to its Service Mode

The first new Service Mode menu appears to display details about Tesla's seat sensors, seat belts and the restraint control module (RCM). The car's visualization is displayed from the top with various areas are highlighted around the vehicle including what appears to be the seat sensors, seat belt buckles and retractors. Tesla displayed how they're tied together and how they communicate with the RCM.

New Window Calibration Menu

Tesla is making improvements to its window calibration system
Tesla is making improvements to its window calibration system

But that's not all. Tesla also appears to be adding a new menu for calibrating vehicle windows. This updated window calibration menu features a new visualization, lets you easily calibrate each window individually and displays the generation of the hardware installed.

HVAC Visualization

A particularly intriguing feature in the upcoming update is a dedicated service mode for Tesla's HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) system. This unique feature will display fan RPM and temperatures in various areas, seemingly allowing a multi-angle view of the HVAC system's visualization.

Though Service Mode is tailored for technicians or Tesla owners with a deep understanding of their vehicle, it offers a new level of engagement, providing detailed insights that can help troubleshoot, reset, calibrate, and even configure new parts.

Accessing Service Mode

To access Service Mode, navigate to Controls > Software, and tap and hold on the vehicle's model name that appears underneath the car's image until a water ripple appears. Then release and type 'service' in the dialog box before hitting 'ok'. It is crucial, however, not to make changes unless you understand the implications fully, as they could negatively affect the vehicle. Moreover, DO NOT drive with Service Mode activated, as it disables critical safety features like traction control.

While the new Service Mode features are not in production yet, they are expected to debut in an upcoming update. As we eagerly await these enhancements, one thing is clear - Tesla continues to push the envelope in providing owners with an unparalleled, comprehensive understanding of their vehicles.

Stay tuned for more updates on these exciting developments as they're expected in an upcoming software update.

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


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