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Additions and changes (or “What has Tesla ever done for me?”)

One of the features of Tesla cars is their ability to be updated via software. In days gone by you were stuck with the car as delivered ... it was never going to improve. Tesla's cars really do change over time, features are added ... and at no cost. We have now moved from a time when nothing could ever change without workshop attention to a time when drivers of Teslas expect a whole lot of changes ... preferably with a new instalment every couple of weeks! For all the frustration that we may feel it's worth looking at what has happened with the Model 3 in the UK over the past couple of years purely via free software updates.

I should have more carefully noted the changes as they occurred but although I don't have a definitive list I do have a note of quite a number of things that have been added via software since September 2019 (when I got my car). This list clearly doesn't take account of the much greater number of changes that are made "under the hood". Unfortunately we rarely get much detail about those, but that's potentially another list, though one which would be more difficult to substantiate.

D228AC01-BC19-4120-ABE1-014A65656F64.jpeg


So here we go:

“What has Tesla ever done for me?”

5% increase in power
addition of “hold” for true one pedal driving
user profiles save more settings
Tesla Theatre .. Netflix, Youtube etc
“Caraoke” entertainment feature
umpteen games !
“Joe Mode” for slightly quieter bing bongs
Scheduled departure setting in charging controls
auto navigation setting available from linked calendar
notifications to app if car is left unlocked or windows open - windows auto close feature
visualization items increased eg cones, bins, pedestrians, traffic lights
increased CCS peak charging rate (from 100kW to 170kW for SR+)
more voice controls (needs excellent LTE connectivity to work)
auto closing of windows left open
wiper performance improvements (still work to do)
Supercharger preconditioning when navigating to site
car now shows if Superchargers are out of order or site is busy
ability to wake for externally timed charging
reverse camera views now includes views from side cameras
ability to detect speed limit signs (not on motorways)
Pin to drive: only number required now without confirmatory button press
rear camera on dash cam footage
in-car screen viewer of recorded dash cam clips
ability to format data drives for dash cam
TACC able to set at current speed rather than just at speed limit
car data e-sim changed to UK (from NL) for access to iPlayer etc
ability to set mirror dimming manually
car wash mode
ability to tap battery icon to instantly swap between showing percentage or miles
navigation can now have waypoints
Blind spot camera display when indicating
ability to switch miles or battery percentage with a tap on battery icon


Specifically App related:
ability to unlock boot and frunk
notifications to app if car is left unlocked or windows open - windows auto close feature and via app
Battery heater temperature icon in app shows when pre-conditioning
ability to change charging parameters via the app e.g. amps and timer
live view from car cameras in app when Sentry Mode is on
charging stats graphing and “savings” through EV charging Vs fuel pricing

(“2019 Tesla Model 3 Performance AWD Front” by Vauxford is licensed under CC BY-ND 4.0.)
 
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Adopado

Well-Known Member
Aug 19, 2019
6,137
4,687
Scotland
So basically stop moaning everybody :)

It's quite a list

I sometimes forget myself how many things have been added and developed. Funnily enough it's usually the non Tesla people who are most impressed and I only think about it when they ask "So what do these software updates do to the car?" ... I reel off a few things ... they say "Wow, that's amazing. So is that every few months?" I reply "Well, last year I think I had about 20 updates." They go "WHAT! ... and you don't pay extra for that?" I usually soften the excitement by letting them know that sometimes they introduce a problem as well as solve a different one!
 

NewbieT

Active Member
Aug 16, 2019
1,530
1,107
North West
I’m going to be an outlier and say … very little that I would actually pay for if there was an additional charge. Lots of gimmicks and nice to have. Light shows and computer games don’t add much value for me. V11 re-write, so what?

Same car. Same range. AP not really any better - just different.

Admittedly far better than a software vendor that doesn’t even bother supporting stuff.

Do wish Tesla would listen more to what we ask for and not what they think we want or that they feel like giving us. Finally we get waypoints. Let’s start with:
  • Basic timed charging- Start & Stop.
  • Pre- heat for 3rd Party UK CCS Rapids
  • Apple Shortcuts Support
 
I haven't yet done so, but I bet if you went through that list there would be quite a few that would just have bought the car up to a normal expected set of functionality, especially for the earlier adopters, then many features were very much half finished, or not even started. And even now, with the model 3 in the UK nearing its third birthday, still more to go.

Unfortunately, when I first put my money down (£2k and 3 years to go before delivery), I was very much in awe of what Tesla were achieving. Even at point of ordering, and another £1k, whilst a very different spec than what was expected 2+ years earlier, it really was pretty much the only option - our other car was 14+ years old and had started to show signs of its age. Plus it wasn't the most environmentally friendly car around town so the time felt right to move on. In hindsight, especially with Covid lockdowns, it was probably a bit premature. The car was, and still is in some respects, still a work in progress. But in the early days, along with the rose coloured spectacles, it wasn't so easy to realise that many of the wow stories were not quite what they seemed. Unlike my son, I'm long past being wowed by a fart noise, and whilst some additions are very welcome, I probably wouldn't have paid any extra for them or added them as a purchase factor and many for me are just gimmicks or fixing/adding what would be expected of a normal car which, along with delivery, service and company attitude and issues, unfortunately detracts from our ownership experience and puts a different perspective on things.

But at least software things can be fixed. Whether they choose to is a different matter.
 

GRiLLA

Active Member
Jul 5, 2020
1,803
1,938
UK
Ahh, I remember the days before Hold mode, having to use the brake to stop the car then pump it to hold the car. Also when there used to only be 2 stalls at SuperChargers with CCS leads, and you could queue to get a chance to charge our downmarket cars.

You tell young people today that and they won't believe you.

To the moaners, above who say they wouldn't have paid for that, you didn't have to. Go talk to an Ionic 5 owner who would sell you a child in exchange for pre-conditioning for a charger, a VAG owner who just got navigation directing to use a 7KW charger, a Polestar owner who waited a year for an app to be released then realising how hideous it is.
 
Conversely to this in the 14 months I've owned my ID.3, there has been one software update which did very little other than changing a few things around in the infotainment interface and fixing a couple of bugs that generated false alerts like "drive system failure, take car to garage". It's also very hit & miss as to when you may get the OTA updates. You have to sign up to get them, then just wait for what can be months before the update randomly shows up. To top it all off, the next update has to be dealer installed to allow for the following OTA to work. Craziness...

For a newly-launched EV in today's market, the ID.3 feels quite antiquated. It's a nice car to drive, but I did expect more from it.
 

Dilly

Active Member
Feb 24, 2020
3,062
2,525
Norfolk
My car is two years old next month. We have forgotten how much has changed in that time. Many things have improved, too many things have remained the same and I have some confidence that eventually they will end up OK.
I think what excites me, is that so much is possible with OTA updates.
I just wish I was ten years younger!
 
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pgkevet

Active Member
Jul 1, 2019
1,846
1,659
mid wales
Most of the things on that list are of no significant interest to me. Pin to drive, yeas, but then most expensive cars would have some form of immobiliser or be fitted with one by the owner. One of the things I miss is when Tesla removed the ability to overlay any 2 windows over the map and make either one full screen (on the S). as for confidence that things will end up OK - they may, maybe, just but by then the on-board hardware will be obsolete again and the rear camera will still get covered in muck and the side cameras blinded. Waypoints? Heck, ya just nav to each in turn - no biggie.
It's the stuff that's missing that I find weird - no surround view and no ability to, say, move a car shape to a parking spot of choice.
 

Adopado

Well-Known Member
Aug 19, 2019
6,137
4,687
Scotland
On the list above there are several items that will be of little interest to many and several that will be of great interest to some. I even forgot to add the recent “light show” entertainment…. it doesn’t even register in my brain. Same with games and the like; take them or leave them… but we’re all different. But even without the lesser valued items there’s surely something for everyone here.

Changes that were specifically of value to me were:

Power increase
CCS charging speed increase
One pedal driving
Joe mode
Auto window closing and with app control plus notifications
On screen dash cam viewer
Supercharger pre conditioning
Supercharger busy or out of order info
Wiper performance improvement
Extra reversing camera views
Blind spot camera view (getting used to it now)
TACC setting at current speed option
Nav waypoints
Car data sim change to UK
Ability to alter charging rate and times via app
Ability to live stream cameras from car

I only occasionally drive on roads to benefit from AP but follow the comments from regular users with interest… from those who insist it’s improving and those who say the opposite! I’ll look forward to my next try out!
 

Rooster6655

Active Member
May 3, 2019
1,913
750
UK
I remember when I got the car 2.5 years ago that the voice control for phone contacts was excellent, then they did an update a few months later and it’s not worked properly since.

Funny I read a comment about a new Y owner being told they are working on the British accent, well it used to work perfect 2 years ago!

So with the good side there is also a not so good side and that’s not including the lagging camera for over 2 months now despite several updates in the meantime
 

Adopado

Well-Known Member
Aug 19, 2019
6,137
4,687
Scotland
Do wish Tesla would listen more to what we ask for and not what they think we want or that they feel like giving us. Finally we get waypoints. Let’s start with:
  • Basic timed charging- Start & Stop.
  • Pre- heat for 3rd Party UK CCS Rapids
  • Apple Shortcuts Support
We could all come up our own lists of changes that we would want. There are multiple threads started to talk about changes we would want. I have started threads about things we would want ... ... but this thread is simply about documenting what has actually changed. This is probably of most interest to people who have only received cars fairly recently. The thread is not intended to imply that all is well with the world and that the job of developing the Tesla is in any way finished!
 
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init6

Active Member
Oct 16, 2020
1,781
1,118
Scotland
I find it remarkable that a Tesla seems to be a lot of peoples first apparent experience of software. I say apparent, because pretty much every piece fo tech has software these days. If you look at your mobile phone the changes it has had in the last 2 years will likely dwarf anything Tesla has done. I understand that this is probably the first time people have had this happen in a car, but even my TV does software updates. Its the nature of technology that software will change and sometimes not for the better.

Back to the OP, it's great to have some perspective and not all changes have been downgrades.
 
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Isnt all this stuff:


notifications to app if car is left unlocked or windows open - windows auto close feature
auto closing of windows left open
wiper performance improvements (still work to do)
reverse camera views now includes views from side cameras
ability to detect speed limit signs (not on motorways)
TACC able to set at current speed rather than just at speed limit
car data e-sim changed to UK (from NL) for access to iPlayer etc
ability to set mirror dimming manually
navigation can now have waypoints

stuff that was bloody obviously necessary from the start (and pretty commonplace on rivals)? I dont think Tesla should be given much credit for realising that people wanted cruise control to work as it did on every other car, or connected services to be linked to the country of supply, or to be guided on journeys that have more than one stop.

And now it's trying literally to reinvent the (steering) wheel :rolleyes:
 
To the moaners
What’s this about describing people as “moaners” if there are some aspects of their cars they’re not happy with, or if they feel distinctly underwhelmed by light shows and fart modes. Teslas are not perfect. These people own Teslas and speak from experience. Their opinions are valid and welcomed by the majority. In fact I think their opinion is far more balanced than that of the fanboys who will tolerate no criticism of Tesla, however valid that criticism might be.

OTA software updates are fantastic but it’s not always plain sailing. Sometimes they break things that previously worked flawlessly and need another update to fix it. The last two major holiday updates, which people looked forward to for weeks with barely suppressed excitement and huge anticipation, have not been particularly well received. Software updates seem incapable of fixing phantom braking and crap wipers and auto headlights.

Whoops, I was determined not to mention wipers and headlights. I’m clearly a serial moaning minnie.
 

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