The software update for Tesla vehicles includes a new feature – tracking the driver through the car’s internal cameras while the autopilot is running. The engineers noted that the self-driving feature requires constant attention from the user, but it has been criticized for the fact that the driver can easily trick the device.
For example, users could activate the function and leave the driver’s seat. The new feature will determine how attentive the driver is while driving. Tesla cars used to do this using sensors in the steering wheel to make sure the driver was in control. Other car manufacturers have used internal sensors to keep track of where the driver’s eyes are looking. This means that the car may slow down or disable the automatic driving function if the driver, for example, starts looking at the phone screen.
A new software update for Tesla vehicles, which has been reported by several media outlets, shows that the camera above the car’s rearview mirror will begin performing a similar function.
This camera can “detect and warn if the driver is inattentive when the autopilot is on”. However, Tesla noted that the data from the camera will not be transmitted to the company, and the exchange of data is not included in the car settings at all.
Tesla, which disbanded its press office last year, has not made a statement on the reasons for the new feature. However, this update coincided with several stories where motorists turned on the autopilot, but did not control the movement.