Tesla's Latest Self-Driving Update Is A Game-Changer

Tesla has released a new beta update for its Full Self-Driving (FSD) software, and it's a big one. The update, which carries the build number v10.12, brings a whole bunch of upgrades for the EVs' turn-taking systems when FSD is enabled. To start, the release notes mention that Tesla has improved the underlying framework that is involved in decision-making for taking left turns. The EV-maker has refined the response of modeling objects, helping the system process noisy data more efficiently.

Another notable change introduced by the update is that the frequency of attempts at taking an uncomfortable turn has been lowered, thanks to an upgraded object future prediction system when changing lanes. It is worth noting here that the lane-changing feature packaged with the FSD bundle has already attracted scrutiny in Europe and might be deemed illegal in the region, according to a report from Stern. As for the left turn woes, a drone video from last year showed a Tesla on an FSD beta build taking an unprotected left turn, prompting concerns in the U.S. as well.

The update also upgrades the lane neural network architecture in order to enhance the safety of turns at crossing traffic. With the addition of 180,000 new video recordings to the training data cache, Tesla also touts to have improved the accuracy of lane prediction. And to ensure that movement out of restricted space is a hassle-free affair, the planner has received a tweak so that it relies less on lane movement.

Boosting FSD stability, one turn at a time

Another crucial improvement that comes courtesy of the latest update is a reduction in false slowdowns, thanks to enhancements made at recognizing yellow lights at traffic signals and lane behavior. Tesla recently courted a federal investigation for a "phantom braking" issue in its cars that caused unexpected deceleration even when the EV was driving at highway speeds. The latest FSD beta update also enhances the understanding of still obstacles, thanks to a wider training data set of 30,000 additional video clips for the aforementioned purpose.

Additionally, velocity errors made by the self-driving system when pedestrians and cyclists are close by have also been reduced. Moreover, the detection of far-away crossing objects has received an upgrade with the latest FSD beta build. Motion estimation and lane change planning have also been refined, ensuring a comfortable lane movement if the maneuver involves rough deceleration of the car.

But do keep in mind that the update is currently rolling out only for Tesla employees and will only be reaching beta-testers after assessing the performance and stability. Replying to a user's query about the latest FSD beta update, Elon Musk responded on Twitter that the v10.12 update will have a limited rollout and will see a wider release with version 10.12.2 of FSD Beta. Notably, Musk added that with FSD Beta 10.12.2, the company will "probably" attain a safety score of more than 95/10.