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Is it unethical to charge extra for Autopilot (software) after we had paid for the hardware?

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by Vaxe, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. Vaxe

    Vaxe Member

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    I support Tesla’s vision and have always recommended them to friends and coworkers. With the latest firmware, I was able to try Autopilot for the first time and would like to buy it - but I’m having a hard time justifying the purchase.

    If I had to bring the car in for service to have them install additional sensors or cameras, then I’m all for shelling out the $6000.
    However, with a 30min software download, I now have Autopilot, which means I had already paid for the hardware. It’s like buying an iPhone with camera enabled, but live video recording disabled unless you download a paid app.

    I think Tesla should’ve offered an option with less Autopilot hardware for less than the $49k base. Or they should’ve raised the base price and made Autopilot standard. It leaves a bad taste to take away a feature when the car you bought already has the hardware. If it’s a monthly subscription fee for a modest $25-$50 for server maintenance, improvements and updates, then yes. $6000 is just too much.

    I’m sure Tesla already factored in the cost of BOM and included that in our invoice. $6000 goes straight to the bottom line.

    Curious to hear your thoughts. Thanks all
     
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  2. MP3Mike

    MP3Mike Well-Known Member

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    Most of the Autopilot hardware is in active use in even cars without EAP. It used for FCW, AEB, and SCW for example.

    Sure they could leave a few of the cameras off, but they need all of the computing power, radar, and ultrasonic sensors... The $6k is for the software, not the hardware.
     
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  3. bFlat

    bFlat Member

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    Is it unethical to pay $2500 for a laptop and then have to pay another $200 for software?
     
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  4. Wes!

    Wes! Member

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    I bought a cell phone from AT&T. Is it unethical to charge me for cell service when I bought the hardware?
     
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  5. Gavyne

    Gavyne Member

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    You paid for the hardware because the car already do things that requires the hardware. Forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane assist warnings including steering intervention, etc.. are all standard on all Model 3's. They use the autopilot hardware. The hardware is simply capable of more, which you pay for if you wish to unlock.

    It's very much like iphones, you could download apps or pay for apps to do things that the default phone won't do. Because your iphone is capable of much more than what the default apps show you.
     
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  6. TT97

    TT97 Active Member

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    For AT&T service, yes!
     
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  7. Raechris

    Raechris Member

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    No
     
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  8. devsters

    devsters Member

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    Not even close to being unethical. And why do you think it is unfair to pay tax on software? This is all capitalism 101. Microsoft should give you free windows upgrades for life since you own a PC right?
     
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  9. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    I imagine there is a ton of cost in not just the software development for EAP, but also liability/legal issues as well if something goes wrong with the system in a way the driver can't intervene.

    So it's perfectly ethical to charge people for the EAP package.

    What I do believe is ethically challenging is to promise features, and then never deliver on them.
     
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  10. Mo City

    Mo City Member

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    As long as you are aware of the terms when purchasing the car, there is nothing unethical.

    Tesla chooses to build AP into every car whether they get paid for it or not. They also choose to charge less for AP when you buy it initially. They have every right to make both of those choices.
     
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  11. mal_tsla

    mal_tsla Member

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    Disagree. Hardware does nothing without the software. Autopilot is primarily a software feature.
     
  12. NathanielHrnblwr

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    I guess you wouldn't buy apps or music either unless they came on a disk.
     
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  13. Vaxe

    Vaxe Member

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    But how sure are we that Tesla did not already spread EAP development cost into the $49k base price? I don’t think they would stake recouping all that software R&D cost to consumer choice.

     
  14. S4WRXTTCS

    S4WRXTTCS Active Member

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    That would ruin one of the best things about Tesla. That is the active safety (AEB/FCW/etc) requires that hardware. So by releasing it without the hardware makes the car less safe.

    There also is an agreement among the NHTSA, and various car manufactures to have automatic emergency braking technologies on all their cars by a certain date. The SAME hardware that's used for the convenience package is used for active safety like AEB.
     
  15. tpham07

    tpham07 Active Member

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    Nope. That's like buying an xbox, and saying its unethical to be charged for games. "but i already bought the hardware"
     
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  16. Vaxe

    Vaxe Member

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    Apple does :)
     
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  17. tpham07

    tpham07 Active Member

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    man i remember the good old days long time ago when OS X new versions costed money haha.
     
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  18. MikeATL

    MikeATL Member

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    I’ve bought IT data center hardware that had the hardware capabilities for a number of features that I didn’t pay for and they don’t work unless I purchase them and obtain the necessary license key.

    Bottom line is that if you understand what you’re buying, there’s nothing wrong with that business approach.
     
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  19. Vaxe

    Vaxe Member

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    But why would they not want to get paid? My point is how do we know we didn’t already pay for EAP development cost in our invoice?
     
  20. alseTrick

    alseTrick Active Member

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    Why do I have to pay for Fortnite?

    I already bought the console!
     
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