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No LTE in 2014

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by techMology, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. techMology

    techMology Member

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    I'm at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and just had an interesting conversation with someone at Volvo heading their connected car offering.

    The reason LTE is not available yet (even though some manufacturers have announced it - he shook his head at this) is because there is no LTE chipset certified for automotive applications. They don't expect a certified chipset commercially available until late 2014 (November, maybe). So until then, it's 3G (HSPA) and FauxG (HSPA+).

    He also reiterated their view that 3G "is enough; 1-2 Mbps, roughly". He also said consumers aren't really asking for it, but marketing is driving the request for LTE ("another sticker on the box").

    So there you have it.
     
  2. andrewket

    andrewket 2014 S P85DL, 2016 X P90DL (soon 100)

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    I believe all of it, but still hold to my position that the Model S would benefit from LTE. I get many audio drop outs, slow map loads, etc. Forget about using the browser. Tether the car to my LTE phone and it's much better.
     
  3. techMology

    techMology Member

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    Agreed. I want it too. I'll be spending the money for the retrofit. I'm hoping it won't be insanely priced.
     
  4. widodh

    widodh Model S R231 EU

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    #4 widodh, Feb 25, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2014
    One of the things with LTE in the Netherlands is that LTE works on 800Mhz while HSPA works on 1800Mhz.

    But another thing is that the latency of LTE is a lot better, 50ms vs 300ms and that's something you'll notice.

    So it's not always about bandwidth, but the lower radio frequency of LTE and the lower latency would really improve the connection in the Model S.
     
  5. rlang59

    rlang59 Member

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    Considering they will have to replace the center screen, I'd be willing to bet on insanely priced.
     
  6. sranger

    sranger Member

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    Why would the auto need a special chip set? I can use my LTE cell phone in a car with no issues....
     
  7. zwede

    zwede 2013 P85+

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    Not necessarily. They would probably send the screens back to HQ where the radio module is replaced and then the old screen is sent back out to a SC as a replacement for another car. The cost (for Tesla) would then just be the radio module + shipping + install labor.
     
  8. techmaven

    techmaven Active Member

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    LTE is overkill right now, and is probably too much for Tesla to deal with on an international basis in the near future anyways. Audio drops, map load issues, etc. are probably an antenna design issue + AT&T cell issues + infotainment computer issues.

    I do think that the computer should be upgradable and I don't envy the programmers that have to try to squeeze in more functionality (especially navigation UI) onto the Tegra 2. At some point, it might be worth it to Tesla to just offer a substantial computer upgrade rather than try to squeeze more functionality onto the existing infotainment system.
     
  9. techMology

    techMology Member

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    #9 techMology, Feb 25, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 25, 2014
    EXACTLY!
     
  10. techMology

    techMology Member

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    There is a module behind the screen that would have to be replaced, not the screen itself. Someone posted a picture of it somewhere; I can't recall where.

    It would require getting behind that screen, though, I would assume Tesla have designed things to make that relatively easy.
     
  11. andrewket

    andrewket 2014 S P85DL, 2016 X P90DL (soon 100)

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    #11 andrewket, Feb 25, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 25, 2014
    Depending on the app, latency can affect the customer experience more than bandwidth. I agree. Anything interactive, for example.
     
  12. pete8314

    pete8314 Vendor

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    I agree with most of what he said, except this bit. For most cars, a theoretical 1-2Mbps is plenty, but the Model S is a little more resource hungry compared to most (all?) cars when it comes to bandwidth. Every day I'm streaming audio and typically running half or full-screen Google earth maps. Throw in some navigation data, telemetry, maybe a passenger trying to navigate the web....it adds up. My audio pauses a lot, and my normal drive is in a good AT&T area. If streaming via LTE on my phone or tablet (together with Waze), there's never an issue.

    So I think the Model S shouldn't be rolled into most mainstream 'connected' cars.
     
  13. rlang59

    rlang59 Member

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    No the module is in the MCU which is in the "screen" (just had mine replaced). Given Tesla's pricing for retrofits I would not count on this being cheap so don't get your hopes up.
     
  14. techMology

    techMology Member

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    100% agreed. That's why I've been keen on learning when LTE will be introduced. It's a bummer it won't be for a while (and after my car is built so I will have to retrofit).

    The only saving grace is as people move off the HSPA network onto LTE, the network should perform a bit better (but only until they start stealing spectrum from HSPA to feed LTE requirements).
     
  15. techMology

    techMology Member

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    Seems strange to have to replace a screen in order to upgrade a component which isn't actually connected to the screen (it merely provides data connectivity).

    But I'm not an expert on Tesla parts, so I'll defer to you (and others) on that. If what you say is true, yep, it'll be obscenely expensive to retrofit.
     
  16. rlang59

    rlang59 Member

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    The screen is more than just a screen, it is also where the computer lives for lack of a better term.
     
  17. AnOutsider

    AnOutsider S532 # XS27

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    His point still stands though. If I want to upgrade my CPU, add more RAM or switch out my wireless card, very rarely does that affect another component. If Tesla designed it that way, I'm not sure why.
     
  18. jyc

    jyc Member

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    I'm not really worried about replacing the radio module itself as much, since I would hope that it was designed as a separate module. I'm not an antenna expert, but I imagine that the existing radio antenna might need to be changed or updated to address the different frequencies used by different carriers and countries, unless they already designed the antenna to work for future LTE upgrades. An antenna replacement would probably push the price up quite a bit.
     
  19. rlang59

    rlang59 Member

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    I understand his point but you know this is not how the service centers work, they replace the entire "black box" not individual components. This also assumes that it is a module (which it probably is) and not soldered on the board. Either way my point still stands, the retrofit will most likely require them to replace the screen and will be expensive. It doesn't really matter to me since I wouldn't pay for the upgrade anyway, I was just trying to set expectations low for a "reasonably priced" upgrade path.
     
  20. polyphase

    polyphase Member

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    I'm just speculating of course, but all the components of the computer will be upgraded in a new generation that includes a 4G radio. Why wouldn't they? So the dashboard form factor is probably the only thing that won't change. You'll have to swap out all the guts to get a 4G radio. Still, that might be worthwhile, but not cheap.
     

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