Published on November 17th, 2014 | by Cynthia Shahan5
How Tesla Updates Change The Game
November 17th, 2014 by Cynthia Shahan
Kim Reynolds, the Testing Director of Motor Trend, has formed an attachment to the Tesla Model S P85, with large part due to its frequently updated software.
Some recent updates really gave Kim a smile. It all started as the car’s nav screen downloaded the Version 6 software after he tapped the “Accept” button. The Tesla’s 3G connection set the car’s mind in motion. After going through this route several times, Kim was very curious what the Model S would be learning this time.
“The next night, while driving down the street to my house, the car automatically rose on its air suspension a few seconds before I turned into my steep driveway,” Kim noted. “Previously — and only if I remembered — I had to stop and push buttons to raise it. What’s happening is that the car is recalling everywhere I’ve requested greater ride height and now does it without waiting to be asked. To my knowledge, I think this is the first time an aspect of a car’s vehicle dynamics has been reprogrammed by over-the-air instructions, and it previews how the Model S’ recently announced Autopilot (semi-autonomous driving technology) will also be incrementally deployed.”
Kim notes that expected future updates, such as opening one’s garage door and parking itself, will be rolled out quietly in a similar fashion. Such updates give an ongoing measure of reliability, good judgment, and inventiveness, powered by good memory and a vehicle based very fundamentally on the software inside it.
These updates repeatedly offer something new and exciting to owners, making them happier with and more attached to their cars, even addicted to getting the latest updates. “All of a sudden, one morning it’ll be able to do something new,” Kim writes.
How smart is the Model S. Well, it’s got to have an IQ above 100. “The nav system already knows where I live and work (its previously asked me to be sure) as well as the hours I typically go back and forth. Now, when I set off on a weekday, a message sometimes appears indicating if there’s more traffic than usual on my normal route and suggests how to save a few minutes. Understand, it’s not rerouting a trip I’ve just actively requested from the navigation system. It’s happening passively, by just watching my habits.”
The Tesla is paying attention to and implementing knowledge of the driver’s habits. Tesla’s ever-watchful software adeptly figures how to be more efficient and helpful. Not necessarily good for the paranoid type, but this is all optional.
Another nifty feature Kim discusses is how your phone’s calendar can be linked to the Model S screen calendar.
For much more, read the full Motor Trend article. I found it very interesting and inspiring.