23 Apr 2019 | Tesla Unveils Full Self Driving Hardware, ‘Robotaxi’ Ride-Sharing and Google Maps Adds Live EV Charging Data

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Show #452

Good morning, good afternoon and good evening wherever you are in the world, welcome to EV News Daily for Tuesday 23rd April 2019. It’s Martyn Lee here and I’ve been through every EV story I could find today to save you time.

Thank you to MYEV.com for helping make this show, they’ve built the first marketplace specifically for Electric Vehicles. It’s a totally free marketplace that simplifies the buying and selling process, and help you learn about EVs along the way too.

TESLA UNVEILS NEW CHIP, NEW COMPUTER

  • So many outlets are talking about the Tesla Autonomy Day yesterday it's hard to know which comments to bring you, so lets start full nerd, as the presentation started with more gigahertz and teraflops than I ever wanted to know about.
  • "Tesla has unveiled a new chip and computer for its cars custom designed by a team led by Apple veteran Pete Bannon. The hardware started full production in July 2018 and is already being retrofitted to employee vehicles, CEO Elon Musk said at the company’s first “Autonomy Day” – intended to showcase autonomous driving progress. Tesla has dropped NVIDIA’s products as a result." is the verdict of Computer Business Review: "The Tesla chip, built for the company by Samsung, is capable of 76 trillion operations per second (TOPS). It draws just 100 watts and includes what Bannon described as a “modest” GPU, with the aim being that as the neural net improves performance, the amount of post-processing the GPU does will shrink. The computer includes 12 A72 64-bit CPUs for general purpose processing that operate at 2.2. gigahertz."

  • Pete Bannon said: "“In 2016 there was no ground-up neural network accelerator; everyone was adding instructions to their CPU or GPU or DSP to make it better for inference. I was hired in Feb 2016. I asked Elon if he was willing to spend all the money it takes to do full custom system design.” He said ‘are we gonna win?’ and I said ‘of course’ so we got a bunch of people and got to work.”.

https://www.cbronline.com/news/tesla-chip-nvidia

  • Fred at Electrek points out the hardware is already on the road: "Today, the company clarified that it was in all new Model S and Model X since March (start around March 20th) and in all new Model 3 vehicles earlier this month (starting around April 12th). Musk said that Tesla will start offering retrofits to current Tesla owners who bought the ‘Full Self-Driving package’ in the next few months."

https://electrek.co/2019/04/22/tesla-full-self-driving-computer-details/

TESLA OUTLINES PLAN FOR ‘ROBOTAXI’ RIDE-SHARING SERVICE

  • "Tesla owners who wish to use their vehicles for the Tesla Network will be able to manage their electric cars through their smartphone. Musk dropped several points of information that will be key to the Tesla Network’s Robotaxi service as well. " says Simon at Teslarati: "Among these is the vehicles’ longevity. The CEO noted that current-generation battery packs are good for about 300,000 to 500,000 miles, though Tesla’s upcoming batteries which will go on production next year will operate for twice as long, up to 1 million miles with minimal maintenance. Operating the Tesla Network will make the electric car maker a player in the highly-competitive ride-sharing market, which is dominated by giants such as Uber and Lyft. Thanks to their low operating costs as all-electric cars, Tesla’s electric cars hold an advantage. Tesla estimates that running a Robotaxi will cost around $0.18 or less per mile. This undercuts the $2-$3 cost per mile of ride-sharing."

  • In a separate Electrek article Fred said: "On the app, Tesla owners will be able to add their cars to the shared fleet to earn money or summon an autonomous Tesla vehicle to pick them up and bring them to a destination. Musk dove deep into the economics of such a fleet — both from Tesla’s perspective and from the perspective of a Tesla owner. As we previously reported, now all new Tesla vehicles are equipped with what Musk believes is all the hardware necessary to achieve full self-driving through future software updates. He estimates that Tesla will have over a million of those vehicles on the road by the end of next year — around the time they start activating full self-driving capability"

https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-autonomy-day-livestream-updates/

https://electrek.co/2019/04/22/tesla-robotaxi-network-self-driving-fleet-ride-sharing-cars/

  • One of the Electrek forum members MrXtraconservative said "People called Musk crazy when he said his rockets would fall from space, then safely land backwards. Impossible! Today is more of the same."

STUFF ELON MUSK SAID ABOUT TESLA AUTONOMOUS CARS ON MONDAY, RANKED

  • Gizmodo ranks how outrageous some of the statements were, with more Elons awarded for anything out there.
  • The new Tesla micro-chip is “the best chip in the world... objectively” (Gizmodo say: according to Bloomberg, even Nvidia—which Musk said Tesla had already transitioned away from as a chip supplier to begin installing the in-house chip—admitted that Tesla had “raised the bar for self-driving computers.”. One out of five Elons)
  • Tesla will have level 5 autonomy in 2020 which means they will self-drive so well “no one needs to pay attention" (Gizmodo say: “Claiming that the Tesla cars have the hardware for full autonomy and only need the software is like saying that we have seeds, we just need to plow, plant, nurture, harvest and then eat,” Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute engineer Raj Rajkumar told the Verge. “Basically they are at the starting point—full autonomy is many years away.” Three out of Five Elons)
  • “Probably two years from now we’ll make a car with no steering wheels or pedals.” (Five out of five Elons.)

https://gizmodo.com/stuff-elon-musk-said-about-tesla-autonomous-cars-on-mon-1834233680

GOOGLE MAPS HELPS YOU FIND OPEN EV CHARGING STATIONS IN REAL TIME

  • "From now on, you just have to fire up Google Maps if you need to hunt for an open EV charging station." reports Engadget UK today: "The latest versions of Google Maps for Android, iOS and the web now show real-time availability for charging ports in the US and UK, giving you a better idea of when to go for a top-up -- you're no longer relegated to static info like before. The feature won't help you find a Tesla Supercharger (you don't really need that given Tesla's app), but it will cover the networks of Chargemaster, EVgo and SemaConnect, with Chargepoint coming soon."

https://www.engadget.com/2019/04/23/google-maps-real-time-ev-charging-station-info/

EVGO AND MAVEN GIG INTRODUCE FIRST IN THE NATION PUBLIC-RIDESHARE FAST EV CHARGING HUBS

  • At a special ribbon cutting event today, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined LA-based EVgo, the nation’s largest public fast EV charging network, and Maven, General Motors’ car sharing platform, to celebrate the introduction of a new, innovative network of EV fast charging hubs that feature both public and dedicated fast chargers for Maven Gig’s shared-use vehicles.
  • Los Angeles is home to EVgo’s first local network of these public-rideshare fast EV charging hubs, which will include three locations across the city, further demonstrating the city’s role as a leader in transportation electrification. Today’s event celebrated the official opening of the Venice Crossroads fast EV charging hub located at 8985 Venice Blvd in Los Angeles. Venice Crossroads is located six miles away from the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and adjacent to the 10 Freeway and the Metro Expo Line. The first hub in the network opened last month in the heart of Hollywood at the Hollywest Promenade
  • Cathy Zoi, CEO of EVgo: "Our new network of public-rideshare fast charging hubs in Los Angeles is the first of its kind and will make charging quick and easy for Maven Gig members, while helping to improve access for all EV drivers across the city. "

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