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Tesla Software V9 sneak peek: UI overhaul, Drive on Nav, and arcade Easter Egg

A sneak peek featuring the first images of Tesla’s upcoming Software Version 9 have emerged online, providing a brief teaser of some design elements and features that can be expected in the upcoming update.

The sneak peek images were recently shared on Twitter by Jason Hughes, a notable member of the Tesla community. The uploaded pictures do not provide a full walkthrough of Software V9’s ins and outs, but it does confirm several features that have been speculated for the firmware release. Immediately noticeable is V9’s User Interface, which has been updated to the look and theme of the UI found in the Model 3. The sneak peek featured images from a Model S’s media control unit, and based on the photos, the layout of the new UI works pretty well with the vehicle’s 17″ portrait display.

The images uploaded of Software Version 9 also show that the App Bar, which used to include buttons for the car’s main features, has been removed. Navigation is always displayed as well. Just like the theme of the UI, buttons in the new Software V9 interface are very similar to those found in the Model 3.

Screenshots of Tesla’s Software Version 9. [Credit: Jason Hughes/Twitter]

Particularly noteworthy in the sneak peek images were Nav waypoints, as well as a feature for Autopilot called “Drive On Nav.” Very little is known about the Drive On Nav feature, though it does seem to be related to a capability that Elon Musk dubbed as “Integrated Navigation” during the company’s Q2 2018 earnings call.

“Integrated navigation. So, you’d like by the way, a little tip for if you’re driving Model S or X or 3, is if you just tap the Navigate button and just drag down, it will automatically navigate you to your home or work, depending upon where you are. That’s a pretty cool feature,” Musk said.

A screenshot showing Drive On Nav, a new Autopilot feature. [Credit: Jason Hughes/Twitter]

On the more fun side of things, the Software Version 9 sneak peek also included a screenshot of Asteroids, a classic Atari game from 1979, being emulated on the Model S’ media control unit as an Easter Egg. Asteroids would likely be only one of several titles that would be rolled out with Version 9, particularly since Elon Musk noted that Tesla would be including games like Pole Position, Tempest, and Missile Command with the upcoming update. Musk even noted that Pole Position, a popular racing game, could be controlled using the electric car’s actual steering wheel.

A screenshot of Asteroids being emulated on the Model S’ 17″ screen. [Credit: Jason Hughes/Twitter]

While the Software Version 9 sneak peek images are already compelling, Hughes noted in his Twitter updates that the software itself is still under development and that there are more features set to be added in the near future. The Tesla enthusiast further mentioned that what he saw so far in the Model S’ Version 9 software is akin to Tesla’s strategy when it transitioned its fleet from Software V7 to V8, in the way that the initial update mostly included UI changes, followed by feature rollouts in succeeding patches.

Tesla’s Software Version 9 is expected to be one of the most notable updates to the company’s software, particularly since Elon Musk noted that it would include the first of the company’s Full Self-Driving features. The full rollout of Software V9 is expected this September.

Tesla Software V9 sneak peek: UI overhaul, Drive on Nav, and arcade Easter Egg
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