Tesla claims its 8.0 update has the biggest user interface improvements since the Model S' launch.

The Tesla 8.0 software update is now widely available to drivers via an over-the-air update, and that means the company can finally tell us what the changes are. The EV maker claims this is “the biggest UI revamp since the launch of Model S.” 

Among the most significant overhauls come to Tesla’s Autopilot semi-autonomous driving system because the tech makes much greater use of the front-mounted radar sensors. They now act somewhat like cameras by scanning the road ahead and creating a 3D image. The improvements allow Autopilot to handle highway interchanges and adapts better to curves through the fleet learning capability. On the safety front, Autosteer shuts off if the driver ignores in-vehicle warnings.

"Software update 8.0 kicks off a significant over-the-air overhaul of the Tesla touchscreen and introduces the biggest UI revamp since the launch of Model S." 

Version 8.0 also brings significant improvements to Tesla’s infotainment system. While using the map, the control bar now fades away when not in use and that allows the image to take up the entire screen. The zoom also adjusts depending on the vehicle’s location and what the driver needs to see most. Another major convenience is the ability to make a single downward swipe while at home and start routing to work. When away from the house, the same movement directs the navigation to take you back to your residence.

The system’s voice recognition is even better at accepting commands, too. A driver now taps a button once to initiate it, and a transcript appears on the instrument panel telling the driver what the tech hears.

Elon Musk says his favorite new feature is the Cabin Overheat Protection that keeps kids and pets from overheating inside the vehicle. Whenever the interior reaches 105 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius), the air conditioning automatically turns on to cool things down. A future update will let owners pick maximum and minimum temperatures for activating the heating or AC.

These updates are available for Teslas going back to 2012. However, the Autopilot improvements are only for models past a certain point in 2014 because earlier ones don’t have the sensors to support the system. According to Musk on Twitter yesterday, version 8.0 can’t go to customers worldwide immediately because there need to be slight adjustments for different regions.

Source: Tesla

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