Fri. Oct 18th, 2019

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Tesla’s Smart Summon feature faces some hiccups

2 min read
Tesla's Smart Summon feature faces some hiccups

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Tesla recently rolled out a big software update – dubbed Software Version 10.0 – last week, which includes a new Smart Summon feature for customers who paid extra for the Full Self-Driving Capability. Essentially an enhanced version of the Summon function, Smart Summon allows users to summon their vehicle to their current or a designated location like a remote valet via the Tesla app.

As stated on the company’s website, the feature is perfect “if you have an overflowing shopping cart, are dealing with a fussy child, or simply don’t want to walk to your car through the rain.” It’s certainly an intriguing feature, but early adopters have encountered a number of issues while using it, and are presenting them on various online platforms.

On YouTube, Daniel Spalding’s video shows the function working somewhat well, as his Model 3 is capable of exiting a parking lot and stopping for a pedestrian and cyclist as it should.

However, even after these obstacles have moved far away, the car appears uncertain of its movements, stopping on the wrong side of the aisle and too far out into an intersection. When the Model 3 eventually arrives near Spalding, it ended up blocking the roadway.

Other Tesla owners had more dramatic experiences with the function, as Twitter user @abgoswami had to watch his Model 3 drive forward from his empty driveway into the side of a garage. Meanwhile, @eiddor’s video post on the social media platform sees a Model 3 being summoned and nearly getting into a collision as it attempted to cross a road while exiting a parking lot.

Tesla did point out in its release notes that Smart Summon is operable from a maximum distance of 200 feet (61 metres), and is only intended for use in private parking lots or driveways, with owners expected to be responsible to maintain a line of sight with the vehicle in case it fails to detect certain obstacles.

Of course, it should be noted that Tesla does not deem Smart Summon as a fully autonomous feature, but it’s clear more work will be needed to fine tune the system to perform more effectively, and there will be more “fail” videos coming out as users test out the feature.

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