Elon Musk has just shared an important update on the rollout of the Full Self Driving Beta release.
By now you’ve likely seen YouTube videos from an early group of around 30 FSD Beta testers that shows Tesla’s progress in autonomy. The FSD Beta outperforms the current shipping version of FSD Preview, with the ability to navigate city streets, even without lane lines.
The FSD Beta software is also capable of making turns, taking round abouts and avoiding cars on the side of roads. While a little more rare, there are also examples of the car navigating around debris on the road. These features build on top of the current preview that automatically stops at red lights and stop signs.
In Musks’ tweet this afternoon, he confirms the FSD Beta program is being doubled in size with version 8.2 (this is a FSD Beta version numbering, not the regular software updates).
He goes on to say that with 8.3 of the software, they’ll likely 10x the number of participants in the program. Putting the FSD Beta software in the hands of more regular people is likely not a decision that comes lightly, given the chance for incidents to happen. This is a very positive sign of the confidence that Elon and the team have in the software.
During the last earnings call, Elon revealed that around 1,000 people currently have FSDbeta, which we expect is mostly made up of employees. A 2x growth means there will shortly be 2,000 people, followed by a total of 10,000 participants when 8.3 rolls out in a the next month or so.
Elon has just replied to WholeMars on Twitter, and confirms the timeline for the 8.3 release of FSD Beta. Musk says the next release has literally ~`1,000 improvements.
Given software releases often squash a number of bugs, it’s not clear how much improvement to the driving experience this will correlate to, but the suggestion is this is dramatically better than what we’ve seen to date.
Elon does provide this disclaimer ‘Still be careful, but it’s getting mature’.
So what should you do if you want to be part of the FSD Beta program? That’s a great question. Elon says to ‘let us know’ in the Tweet, but doesn’t provide any detail on how to go about that. Naturally the post now has a flood of replies with people (including myself) who want in.
This presents a challenge for Tesla to match a Twitter account to a Tesla account, or VIN of a car, let’s hope they have a pretty sophisticated AI running across their CRM and social channels to make that connection.
As a 2019 Model 3 Performance (stealth) owner, and someone who has purchased FSD, I’d love to be part of the Beta and provide updates to the readers of techAU regarding the progress of the software. Feel free to hit me up on email, slide into the DMs, whatever it take Elon, let’s get this done (even if we are in a RHD market).
Elon has previously said that he expects to deliver ‘feature complete’ Level 5 autonomy by the end of 2021. Now we’re in March, this expansion of FSD beta that started in October 2020, is a very positive sign.
There is still work to do, including the ability for the car to go park itself, something Smart Summon does not currently offer.
Having now referred 73 people to buy a Tesla vehicle, it would be great to see that rewarded with early access.