Rivian says “fat finger” caused software update to brick infotainment systems, physical servicing may be required

Today’s cars are more like computers on wheels, and even a seemingly routine software update can lead to unexpected consequences. Rivian unfortunately experienced a “fat finger” mishap with their latest software update, bricking infotainment systems that may require a physical service visit to fix.

On Tuesday Rivian released an over-the-air (OTA) software update, version 2023.42.0, promising enhancements to features like proximity locking, vehicle access, and gauge views. However, what was intended as a positive step forward quickly turned into a frustrating experience for some R1T and R1S owners.

According to Rivian the glitch occurred when the wrong build with incorrect security certificates was inadvertently sent out. This error resulted in bricking the infotainment systems of an unknown number of vehicles. Rivian’s VP Software Wassym Benraid quickly acknowledged the issue, warning however that the “fat finger” mistake could leave affected drivers facing potential physical repairs.

“We made an error with the 2023.42 OTA update – a fat finger where the wrong build with the wrong security certificates was sent out. We cancelled the campaign and we will restart it with the proper software that went through the different campaigns of beta testing. Service will be contacting impacted customers and will go through the resolution options. That may require physical repair in some cases. This is on us – we messed up. Thanks for your support and your patience as we go through this,” Benraid said on Reddit.

Rivian has since cancelled the faulty update, assuring customers that their service staff would be in touch with those impacted, and resolution options would be explored, potentially requiring physical repairs in severe cases.

Despite the glitch, most critical vehicle functions remained operational. Critical functions like turn signals, locks, lights, wipers, and the backup camera were unaffected. However, the infotainment system, a hub for various features, became non-functional for many.

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