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Tesla “Request FSD Beta” button formally gets released

Credit: Tesla Raj/YouTube and @28delayslater/Twitter

After months of waiting, Tesla owners who wish to take part in the company’s FSD Beta program could now formally request the advanced driver-assist system to be loaded into their vehicle. The release of the “Request FSD Beta” button comes before the rollout of FSD Beta 10.1, which is expected to be distributed to the company’s testers over the weekend. 

The wait has been long for Tesla owners who are looking to test out the company’s most advanced driver-assist system to date. Initially intended for release months ago, the rollout of the “Request FSD Beta” button has been delayed multiple times. True to Elon Musk’s recent statements on Twitter, however, the wait for the famed button is now over, with Tesla releasing the function in its software update 2021.32.22. As per the update’s Release Notes:

“Request Full Self-Driving Beta”

“You can now request early access to Full Self-Driving Beta pending eligibility. To get started, tap ‘Controls’>’ Autopilot’>Request Full Self-Driving Beta’ and follow the instructions.”

Similar to the FSD Beta program that has initially been released to the company’s first batch of testers last October, Tesla made it a serious point to highlight that safety must be paramount when using the advanced driver-assist system. This could be seen in the heavy emphasis on cautious driving that the company references in its recent update, as well as the use of Safety Scores to determine which drivers are eligible for the program. 

“Thank you for your interest in limited early access Full Self-Driving Beta! The Tesla team is analyzing your vehicle driving data and Safety Score to determine eligibility. You can view your Safety Score from the Tesla app at any time (version 4.1.0 or newer). If eligible, you will receive a software update as part of the limited early access,” Tesla wrote, adding that owners also have the option to opt-out of the FSD Beta test program. 

Tesla requires owners to agree to a number of terms and conditions for the FSD Beta program. First off, the company noted that owners must “consent to the collection and review of ongoing VIN-associated vehicle driving data” while enrolled in the program. Also, participants must “understand that when using FSD Beta, (they are) responsible for remaining alert with (their) hands on the wheel, and must be prepared to take action at any time.” 

The company further made it clear that while FSD Beta would provide vehicles with advanced driver-assist capabilities that would enable navigation on areas such as inner-city roads, “FSD Beta does not make (vehicles) autonomous.” Tesla also made it clear that access to the advanced driver-assist system could be revoked at any time. This should discourage drivers from abusing the system, such as when Consumer Reports posted a video showing how to use Autopilot without anyone in the driver’s seat. 

Tesla’s emphasis on safe driving with the release of the “Request FSD Beta” button is understandable. The scrutiny faced by new technologies such as Autopilot and FSD is immense, after all, and it would be very easy for critics to take control of the narrative if something untoward were to happen. This was highlighted by Elon Musk recently when he noted on Twitter that the initial ~2,000 FSD Beta testers have been testing the advanced driver-assist system for almost a year with no accidents whatsoever. As the program expands with the “Request FSD Beta” button, Tesla would definitely do what it can to keep the system’s safety record as intact as possible. 

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Tesla “Request FSD Beta” button formally gets released
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