Tesla Rebuilt Its Music Player; Expect More Music Services in 2023

By Lennon Cihak

Tesla's rebuilding its music player

Tesla has now reportedly rebuilt parts of their in-car audio player using HTML, Javascript and CSS, but what exactly does that mean? Could this change mean more music streaming services coming down the pipeline? If so, we may see Amazon Music, Pandora, and other audio streaming services added to Tesla’s vehicles in an upcoming software update.

Tesla launched Apple Music integration in their vehicles with the 2022 holiday update and according to Tesla hacker Greentheonly, parts of the music player have been rebuilt using web technologies.

Apple Music appears to be the only music service utilizing the new player at this moment, but it appears that Tesla is transitioning Spotify to their web-based player as well. The HTML-based audio player interface is almost identical to the native audio player in terms of design and behavior except for some small design changes.

While Apple Music is the only audio service leveraging Chromium for its interface, we believe Tesla will move all their music services to leverage this new player.

Why Use a HTML Player?

So the question is why move to an HTML-based player when Tesla already has a working audio player and there are downsides to web-based apps, such as reduced performance?

The answer is development time and ease of updating. While web apps aren’t a good choice for intensive tasks, a simple audio player could be.

Developing web software is usually much quicker and easier when compared to developing in a native language such as C or C++. The user interface is quicker to build and changes can also be implemented faster.

Since most streaming services like YouTube Music, Amazon Music, Pandora, SiriusXM and many others already offer web-based players, adapting these to work in Tesla’s web player is a much easier process than porting the music service to work in another language. The APIs, streaming protocols and all the details needed are already available in these web apps and Tesla just needs to adapt the application to work with their user interface.

Web applications also have the advantage of downloading new data when a user connects, so it’s much easier to roll out new features, updates and bug fixes. A web-based solution doesn’t require the end user to download a software update either, so Tesla can fix any issues on the fly.

Video Streaming

When Tesla rolled out their video streaming services in Tesla Theater, they took the web route and loaded the streaming service’s website in a Chromeless browser, creating almost zero development for the Tesla team. They leveraged what each streaming service already provides on the web and made it available in the car.

For audio, it’s a similar concept, except Tesla wants to provide a consistent user interface regardless if you’re listening to TuneIn, SiriusXM or Spotify. To do this Tesla still needs an additional layer that connects the audio controls to their UI, but the effort required is greatly reduced.

This change to leveraging the vehicle’s browser to render more parts of the Tesla interface could be the reason why we’ve seen so many performance improvements to Tesla’s Chromium-based browser.

New Music Services

With this upgrade and transition already taking place, I’d be surprised if we didn’t start to see the addition of many music streaming services integrated with Tesla’s vehicles in the near future.

This could mean that we may see additional music services such as YouTube Music, Pandora, Amazon Music, and even a streaming version of SiriusXM in the near future.

By Kevin Armstrong

Tesla adjusts the length of FSD suspensions

Well-known Tesla hacker, @greentheonly, has found something new in Tesla’s code that answers many questions. It appears that the company is moving forward with a two-week suspension for drivers who lose full self-driving access. This revelation puts an end to the speculation of FSD suspension times, and it should be a great relief to those who’ve been stuck in FSD jail in the past.

Update 2022.44.30.10

FSD 10.69.25.2

Last updated: Jan 19, 9:30 pm

In a tweet, @greentheonly says that Tesla appears to have finally added the two weeks suspension to FSD Beta 10.69.25.2. He states that the internal wording has been updated to mention two weeks. Previously it was only mentioned in the FSD Beta 10.69.25.1 release notes.

Only a small percentage of customers have started receiving the latest beta, v10.69.25.2. However, the update continues to roll out to additional owners today and that trend is expected to continue.

Confusion on Suspension

The hacker was asked if this change is hard coded to two weeks or if it is an auto-regrade system similar to the safety score. Green responded that the phrasing in the software has been changed from:

“Feature will be restored with an upcoming software release.”

To the following phrase, which matches the two weeks mentioned in the release notes:

“Feature will be restored approximately two weeks after suspension.”

In another tweet, he explained: …the message is hardcoded to two weeks, so the code is likely same too otherwise the message would be variable as well I would imagine.

The original wording had many believing that with Beta 10.69.25.1, Tesla was transitioning away from global resets and instead resetting them after a specific period, believed to be two weeks. That belief stemmed from the company’s previous release notes stating that the FSD Beta feature can “only be removed per this suspension method and will be unavailable for approximately two weeks.” However, when the update started rolling out publicly, owners’ suspensions remained.

Shorter Suspensions are Productive

To reiterate, because there are many new Tesla owners, FSD becomes disabled if there are too many inattention warnings. So, after being alerted three times (for legacy Model S and Model X cars) or five times (for vehicles with the cabin camera), FSD is disabled. Previously, the length of the suspension has been anyone’s guess. Several users have said they were banned from the system for months. Now, the suspension appears to be about 14 days after receiving your last strike.

Hopefully, the shortened suspension is long enough to correct the driver’s actions, but it’s also short enough that Tesla can continue gathering Autopilot information and reduce frustration. The system has undergone significant improvements, and engineers have said it can only improve with more real-world input.

Tesla is expected to remove the need to provide resistance to the steering wheel with an upcoming update. However, drivers will still need to remain attentive because Tesla will likely start to rely more heavily on the vehicle’s in-cabin camera or radar to measure the driver’s attentiveness.

By Lennon Cihak

How to calibrate your Tesla's cameras

If your Tesla is not recognizing objects correctly, if it appears to be performing abnormally, or if you’re receiving errors related to your cameras or Autopilot, you may want to calibrate your vehicle’s cameras.

The process may take a while to complete, but it’s quick and easy to begin.

How Many Cameras Does a Tesla Have?

Teslas with Autopilot 2 or higher have eight cameras around the vehicle, excluding the cabin camera. The cabin camera was initially added with the Model 3 in 2017, and Tesla later enabled its use via a software update.

The cabin camera does not directly impact Autopilot’s performance while engaged. Instead, it’s solely used to help monitor the driver and confirm that they’re paying attention while Autopilot is engaged.

Tesla initially equipped its vehicles with ultrasonic sensors, but the Austin-based automotive company is transitioning its vehicles to leverage Tesla Vision exclusively. In 2022 Tesla begin to omit ultrasonic sensors entirely and now uses the vehicle’s cameras exclusively.

How to Calibrate Your Tesla’s Cameras

To calibrate your vehicle’s cameras, follow the steps below. Keep in mind that although you can drive your vehicle immediately after performing these steps, some features that depend on the vehicle’s cameras will not be available until after calibration is completed.

  • Go to “Controls” (the car icon)
  • Tap “Service”
  • Tap “Camera Calibration”

Once you’ve tapped “Camera Calibration,” a warning message will pop up with the following text:

“Clearing the Autopilot camera calibration will reset the calibrated camera positions and angles stored on the Autopilot computer. This procedure should only be performed if the cameras have been moved due to a windshield or camera replacement. Clearing calibration will result in no Autopilot features until the system recalibrates, which may take up to 100 miles of driving on roads with highly-visible lane lines.”

When you’re ready, tap “Clear Calibration.”

Note: If possible, drive on a long straight road with multiple lanes (like a controlled-access highway) with easily visible lane markings for quicker and more accurate calibration. According to Tesla, “Clear Calibration may not resolve all camera and sensor concerns.”

How Long Does It Take to Calibrate the Cameras?

The blue ring around the Autopilot icon will show you the progress of your camera calibration

First, you will not be able to use Full Self-Driving, Enhanced Autopilot, or Basic Autopilot. These will all be disabled while the cameras are recalibrated.

The steering wheel icon that previously showed whether Autopilot was engaged will now show a blue ring. As the vehicle gathers data and the software adjusts, the ring will adjust to show the calibration progress. Although it may take up to 100 miles of driving to calibrate your cameras, it’s usually much quicker. To be safe, you should plan for the calibration process to take 2-3 hours of driving to complete.

Camera Calibration Stuck at 99%

The ring may get to 99% complete and then get ‘stuck.’ This is normal. Be patient and allow the car to complete the process. It will resolve itself and the vehicle will notify you when calibration is complete.

If after a few drives and more than 100 miles the recalibration is still stuck, contact Tesla to set up a service appointment. They’ll be able to determine whether the issue is software or hardware-related. Tesla may be able to diagnose your vehicle remotely and push an update to help fix any issues.

Why Do Cameras Need to be Calibrated?

The cameras placed strategically around the vehicle need to be aligned perfectly in order to function properly. Each video feed from the cameras is joined together to form a 360-degree view of the vehicle’s environment. If there’s a gap between cameras or an extension overlap, it could cause the vehicle to not see certain areas or see “double.” It’s like taking multiple pictures with your phone and then stitching them together. It’s how astronomers edit and stitch pictures together from the James Webb Space Telescope.

The calibration process doesn’t actually move the cameras, but instead, it crops and adjusts each camera’s feed so that the vehicle sees a single unified image. That’s why the slightest millimeter of miscalibration could cause issues.

What Does Recalibrating Tesla’s Cameras Fix?

Recalibrating the cameras in your Tesla may fix a number of things, including phantom braking, inability to properly detect surrounding objects, Autopilot faults, and various error messages.

Tesla states in their Model 3 instruction manual that a few limitations may cause Autopilot’s functionality to be limited. They include:

  • Poor visibility (due to heavy rain, snow, fog, etc.).
  • Bright light (due to oncoming headlights, direct sunlight, etc.).
  • Damage or obstructions caused by mud, ice, snow, etc.
  • Interference or obstruction by object(s) mounted onto the vehicle (such as a bike rack).
  • Obstruction caused by applying excessive paint or adhesive products (such as wraps, stickers, rubber coating, etc.) onto the vehicle.

  • Narrow or winding roads.
  • A damaged or misaligned body panel.
  • Use of gray or aftermarket glass.
  • Interference from other equipment that generates ultrasonic waves.
  • Extremely hot or cold temperatures.

If you’ve just received delivery of your Tesla, your vehicle may still be calibrating its cameras. Look for the blue ring around the Autopilot icon to see if your vehicle is still calibrating its cameras.

Hopefully, after recalibrating your cameras, the issues you were experiencing are fixed. Although recalibrating your cameras does not fix all issues, it’s usually a good first step to try.

As always, if you continue to experience issues, you should schedule an appointment with Tesla service through the Tesla app.

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