Autopilot software is not something completely new in the auto industry, with the Google Self-Driving cars having traveled more than 1.7 million miles already, and several other companies working on incorporating this feature into their vehicles.
Tesla is one of the aforementioned companies, but its aims are to take things further than any other competitor has. Their work is still in progress, but after the driver will be able to activate Autopilot, the car will be programmed to do things such as staying in lane, changing lanes when the driver turns on the turn signal, avoiding obstacles, and driving at the safest speed possible.
Safety is one of the most important things the Tesla company has in mind, as it is well-known that car accidents cause an incredible amount of deaths and are a huge issue in our society.
Tesla is the first company in the car industry which has released the autopilot software as a “beta test”, which means that drivers who want to use it can become software testers and help the company perfect their autopilot.
In a statement published on Tesla’s official website, it reads “Tesla’s Autopilot is a way to relieve drivers of the most boring and potentially dangerous aspects of road travel — but the driver is still responsible for, and ultimately in control of, the car.”
But what are the actual features that Tesla promises to bring to the auto industry and to their customers?
The first one would be the speedup of autopilot research. Every Model S built by the company will, with the owner’s consent, transmit travel data back to the company. This data is used to create maps which are useful for learning the aggregated driving behavior.
Another one of the company’s intentions is to produce fully self-driving cars in the future, making use of the same data gathered by the Autopilot cars, which only have partial autonomy. The ultimate goal is to create vehicles which are clearly safer than human drivers.
Even if Tesla has some other challenges to address – such as navigating urban streets at intermediate speeds – they definitely promise some major and exciting changes in the auto industry.