Elon says Tesla needs to improve the car's software

By Kevin Armstrong
Elon Musk thinks Tesla needs to improve their software
Elon Musk thinks Tesla needs to improve their software
NATA

Tesla’s software needs work. That’s according to Elon Musk, who was highly critical of the interface, the browser and other programs in a video posted to the Tesla Owners Silicon Valley YouTube channel.

“We have a lot of work to do actually with the basic software in the car,” said Musk. “We definitely need to do work on the overall interface in the car.”

It was revolutionary when Tesla started putting large tablets in its vehicles in 2012. The huge touchscreen replaced most of the knobs and switches on the dashboard, giving Tesla yet another way to stand out in the automotive world.

However, touchscreens are relatively standard in most vehicles now, and there may be a few automakers doing it as well as Tesla soon, especially given the upcoming improvements to Apple's CarPlay.

Musk has heard the criticism, “there are a lot of complaints about the interface; you can do better on the interface.”

Musk doesn’t stop with his self-critiquing, “our web browser sucks. If you try to use the web browser in the car, it takes a long time to load, and then it is a trash browser. It’s worse than some iPad from five years ago, like by a lot.”

Tesla's browser is based on Google's open-source browser, Chromium. While the same engine powers Google Chrome, the browser in a Tesla lacks the speed and efficiency Musk expects.

Tesla has been working to improve the browser. Update 2022.12 came with a newer version of Chromium and introduced elements like autocomplete, changes to favorites and the ability to clear your browser cache.

However, this interview was conducted almost three months after that update was first released. Musk is clearly not impressed with the improvements.

He also says the rear screens in the Model S and Model X need a lot of work (rear screens may also come to Model 3 and Model Y).

The CEO points out that the rear screen is helpful to entertain people in the backseat, but the fact that the same audio plays throughout the cabin is less than ideal.

“We could, we should have separate audio for the back. Like, what is the point? We are currently playing the same audio level for the back screen as we do in the front.”

The first minivans with DVD players offered headphone jacks to provide an experience that wouldn't distract the driver.

“The back should play that audio; it should route to a Bluetooth that is keyed off of the rear screen, and then you give them headphones. So people can listen to music in the front and not get blasted by YouTube kids shows in the front, which is currently the situation.”

It's possible Tesla could offer the ability to stream the rear audio to Bluetooth headphones in a future update.

Musk added that "there's a bunch of stuff like that that we need to fix."

Musk did not commit to a timeline on making improvements or even if the changes he suggested will be made. Nevertheless, when a CEO says elements of the product “suck” and are “trash,” employees responsible for those aspects may want to get to work.

Tesla does not currently support CarPlay for a variety of reasons.

Video

Elon talks about Tesla's software at the 37 minute mark below.

First Look at Tesla's V12 User Interface, Full Screen Visualizations and New Media Player [Updated: Photos and Video]

By Not a Tesla App Staff
The_Alfather / Edited by Not a Tesla App

Tesla's latest V12 user interface will change the look and feel of some of the vehicle’s operations. This new interface, announced on X, is already partially available on the Cybertruck but will now be rolled out to the Model 3 and Model Y, equipped with AMD Ryzen processors according to Tesla. However, the new Model S and Model X will likely receive it as well, although possibly not at the same time. It integrates several new features and aesthetics that set new standards in vehicle interface design.

The new interface will become available in Tesla update 2024.14, which started rolling out to employees yesterday.

New Parked Vehicle Visualization

A standout feature of the v12 UI update, not to be confused with FSD v12, is the centralized vehicle visualization, which dominates the display while parked (video below). This design choice enhances visual appeal and improves functionality by placing critical vehicle performance metrics, and status updates front and center. Similar to the layout in the Cybertruck, this feature provides drivers with a clear and immediate view of their vehicle's status and shows off the gorgeous 3D model.

New Media Player

There’s a new media player that’s larger and easier to use. By increasing the size of the media player, Tesla is now able to fit additional options that were hidden before, such as EQ and audio settings, the search icon and shuffle and repeat options.

The new media player appears while the vehicle is parked, driving or while the visualizations are in full-screen mode.

The media player is available on the Model 3 and Model Y and according to Tesla it’ll be limited to vehicles with the Ryzen-based infotainment center.

Tesla adds a new media player in update 2024.14
Tesla adds a new media player in update 2024.14

Improved Navigation

The navigation system will see several improvements. You’ll now see a little trip progress bar that lets you visually see how far along you are on your route.

If your vehicle has a rear screen, as in the new Model 3, the redesigned Model S or Model X, then trip information such as ETA will also be displayed on the rear screen.

Tesla already has the ability to update your route if a faster route becomes available. You can change some of these settings under Controls > Navigate. However, now the vehicle will show you if a faster route becomes available and gives you a chance to cancel the updated route if needed.

Expanded Autopilot Visualizations

Tesla is now bringing its full-screen visualizations outside of North America. However, there will be some improvements as well. In addition to being able to have the visualizations go full screen, there will now be a small map displayed in the corner as well.

That’s one of the issues with the full-screen FSD visualizations right now. If you make them full-screen, you lose your navigation map completely and only have the next turn available.

This will be the first time full-screen visualizations are available outside North America. It’s not clear whether all the FSD visualizations will be available such as traffic lights, curbs and more will be displayed, but Tesla has slowly been adding additional visualizations for non-FSD users, so there’s a chance that this feature will finally display all FSD visualizations to users outside of North America.

It’s not immediately clear whether this feature will require Enhanced Autopilot (EAP) or FSD.

Update: The full-screen visualizations do not require FSD or EAP, but unfortunately the visualizations displayed are still the same ones as in previous updates, so it won’t display the surrounding environment and curbs.

Full-Screen Browser Support

With this update, Tesla will finally let you manually make the browser full-screen. While this will make Tesla’s Theater apps a little redundant since they just loaded the website of the selected streaming service, you’ll now be able to stream any video service full screen, as long as the service supports Tesla’s browser.

As expected, the full-screen button will only be available while the vehicle is parked.

Checking Compatibility

Owners can verify their vehicle’s compatibility with the new full-screen visualizations while parked and driving by navigating to Controls > Software > Additional Vehicle Info on their Tesla’s touchscreen. This update is tailored for Tesla vehicles equipped with the AMD Ryzen processor.

Tesla's Next FSD v12 Update Will Be Available For Users on 2024.8

By Not a Tesla App Staff

Tesla will soon roll out a FSD v12 which is compatible with update 2024.8 Tesla began its public rollout of FSD v12 last month, which brings a much more refined, human-like experience to the self-driving software.

To celebrate the achievement and show owners how big of an improvement FSD v12 is, Tesla offered a free month of FSD to all owners with compatible vehicles in the U.S. and Canada.

However, there was a caveat. The latest FSD v12 (v12.3.4) is Tesla update 2024.3.15. Since Tesla doesn't roll back updates since the process isn't rigorously tested, that means many owners who had already received Tesla update 2024.8.9 were left without a free trial and access to FSD v12.

Subscribing to FSD on Update 2024.8

In fact, if you're in the U.S. or Canada and subscribe to FSD while on update 2024.8.x, you'll actually receive the older, and quite a bit worse FSD v11.4.9.

The FSD v12 update has been highly anticipated and aims to finally upgrade Tesla’s ADAS level 2 system to something higher. Musk has talked about level 4 or 5, and even recently said Tesla is going all-in on FSD.

FSD v12 for Update 2024.8 Is Coming

Rohan Patel, who recently left Tesla, recently said that Tesla is already working on an FSD v12 update that is compatible with users on update 2024.8.x. This means that the next FSD update may finally be based on the 2024.8 codebase.

However, just this morning Tesla released the next major update to the platform, update 2024.14 for employee testing. The update is massive and includes an updated UI, hands-free trunk opening, a full-screen browser and more.

However, Patel never specified which codebase the next FSD update would be based on. If it's based on update 2024.8, then users who are upgraded to 2024.14 in the next couple of weeks may face a similar fate as users on 2024.8 today.

Release Date

Patel said to expect the release of the next version of FSD v12 this week. Since update 2024.14 is still being tested with "wave 1" employees, we'll likely see one of two things happen. We may see the next FSD update be based on 2024.8 and released very soon, or it'll be based on update 2024.14, but it may not be available for another couple of weeks.

Once this update arrives, owners with a Tesla on 2024.8.x will finally be able to update and receive their one-month trial of FSD v12 and finally experience what everyone has been excited about.

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