Tesla’s remote control feature for car retrieval, known as Advanced Summon, is almost ready for release. In a recent update on Twitter, CEO Elon Musk noted both the impending timeline and that he was personally testing the self-driving feature over the weekend himself. Advanced Summon is a set of new features and capabilities that allow Tesla drivers to command their vehicles to drive to their location through the Tesla mobile app.
Tesla owners who are part of the all-electric car maker’s Early Access Program recently shared aspects of Advanced Summon that are expected to be included in the final release. These include the ability to recognize people and objects in the way of the car’s path. Also, smoother steering and a quicker commute to the summoning driver than what was demonstrated in the beta testing version are anticipated.
The current iteration of Summon utilizes a vehicle’s ultrasonic sensors to move forward and backward in a straight line for a maximum of 39 feet, whereas the new version will utilize data from Autopilot cameras to make longer trips that are self-guided. This update to data sourcing would, in theory, allow the car to also read signs in a parking lot to determine whether it was valid to park in an empty spot before pulling in, adding self-parking to the Advanced Summon set of features. That particular enhancement, however, isn’t expected to be released until next year with a further update.
Tesla’s advances in autonomous driving continue to raise the bar for other car maker’s to meet. The electric car maker’s Full Self-Driving computer is already being installed in vehicles currently being produced, and new Autopilot and Autopilot-enabled features are regularly being made available via over-the-air software updates. Earlier this month, Tesla released two Lane Departure Avoidance features that steer drivers back into their lane after drifting without a turn signal. The features are derived from Autopilot but don’t require it to be on in order to work.
The safety data Tesla has compiled statistically demonstrates that less accidents happen when Autopilot is used vs. when cars are driven manually. Based on this data, the company now includes the self-driving feature in all newly purchased Tesla Model S, Model 3, and Model X vehicles. The Lane Departure Avoidance features were added without further cost to Tesla’s customers, both actions being taken as part of Tesla’s “safety first” mission.
While most Autopilot features are dedicated to safety enhancements, Advanced Summon applies the same technology to further improve the Tesla ownership experience, adding both convenience and more fun to the mix.