Tesla has begun the all important public roll-out of its latest version of Full Self-Driving (FSD) Beta, v12, with the release of software update 2023.44.30.12 on Sunday. The release is important because v12 is the first version in which the self-driving system operates entirely on end-to-end neural nets.
Up to this point, Tesla’s FSD technology could have been considered partial AI, with the system using neural nets for the system to determine what is going on around it. The part that doesn’t use AI is the hundreds of thousands of lines of code which tells the vehicle what to do in various scenarios, for instance, decelerating when a pedestrian is detected or moving forward at a green traffic light. However, the introduction of v12 marks a pivotal shift. The car’s responses will no longer be dictated by preset instructions; instead, they will also be governed by neural networks, representing a significant evolution in the system’s functionality, which Elon Musk refers to as “end-to-end AI,”
FSD v12 has been teased since last year, and was rumoured to possibly be included in the annual holiday software update. That didn’t come fruition, with Musk later revealing the software was going through extra testing ahead of a wide release.
Until now the software has only been in the hands of employee testers, but the first public testers received FSD V12 on Sunday night. Despite Musk’s assertion that the ‘beta’ tag would be lost with V12, the release notes of software update 2023.44.30.12 still include the moniker, according to screenshots shared by @WholeMarsBlog on X (formerly Twitter).
“FSD Beta v12 upgrades the city-streets driving stack to a single end-to-end neural network trained on millions of video clips, replacing over 300k lines of explicit C++ code,” the release notes read.
pinch me i must be dreaming pic.twitter.com/1BpwkkhoIM— Whole Mars Catalog (@WholeMarsBlog) January 22, 2024
Unfortunately this has not turned into a wide release just yet, and so far appears to be quite limited. However, early impressions of FSD v12.1.2 have been positive, with comments that it behaves much more like a human. It has also been noted that it now recognizes and slows down to 8mph (12km/h) for speed bumps.
You can watch a video of FSD v12 in action below.