Tesla is set to make its new generation cars safer and entirely driverless over the course of time; it has emerged. Through a series of announcements, demos and press statements, the company has indicated that its ultimate goal is to provide what it calls the ‘Full Self-Driving Capability’ in all its models. The Full Self-Driving Capability is expected to replace another suite of software that the company uses in its cars, called ‘Enhanced Autopilot.’
Recently, the CEO of the company, Elon Musk, indicated that the company was implementing a new form of a software update that would see all the ‘Hardware 1’ software programs in its models replaced with a more advanced form of hardware called ‘Hardware 2.’
Hardware 2 is a highly advanced set of programs and software applications that can help to eliminate the need for humans to navigate the cars in the future. At the heart of Hardware, 2 is the inclusion of about eight highly specialised cameras and many sonic sensors and radars. The highly advanced car driving technology package also contains a super fast computer that can process data at very high speeds compared to what Hardware 1 does.
Interestingly, it appears that the company has decided to stagger the process of updating the software in its Model S and Model X cars. Owners of these models will have the chance to choose the kind of technology they would like to have in their cars. Besides, owners of these models will have access to a series of software updates over the course of time. The series of software updates is scheduled to occur over time in such a manner that the cars will eventually become autonomous at the end.
Observers are keen to point out that the decision of Tesla to stagger the process of updating the software programs in its cars is based on the need to get regulatory approval for every step of the way. Given the nature of self-driving software and its safety implications, Tesla has to comply with a barrage of regulations along the way.
But in what appears as a moral boost to the company, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has pointed out that the company’s Autopilot technology does prevent accidents and helps to save lives. The NHTSA was commenting on the findings of a long-running investigation into an accident involving one of the Tesla’s cars running on Autopilot.
Elon Musk was quick to reiterate the findings of the NHTSA, pointing out that the improvements that the company was carrying out on its technology were solely responsible for the reduction in the rates of accidents involving its cars.
‘The crash rate of Tesla vehicles reduces by 40% after installation of Autosteer,’ he tweeted.
Autosteer is one of the various software packages that the company has been actively building and installing in its models over the recent past.