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Tesla upgrades in-car navigation software in China, introduces lane-level guidance

June 7, 2024 - 21:17 By Reuters
A row of Tesla superchargers is shown at a supercharging location in Los Angeles, California on June 5. (Reuters)

BEIJING (Reuters) -- Tesla released a software upgrade for its in-car navigation system in China on Friday, introducing new features such as displaying lane markings on its maps that correspond to the actual lanes on the road.

The company announced the update on its official WeChat account along with a series of new features added in the latest over-the-air upgrade that it claimed would reduce users' reliance on smartphone applications while driving.

Tesla did not specify the provider of the lane-related mapping service while the official Shanghai Securities News reported on Friday that Baidu is the map supplier.

Baidu, first announced the release of its V20 Baidu Maps in April, naming Tesla and Huawei among the clients of the map. Baidu has been Tesla's navigation map provider since 2020.

The Baidu Maps V20 introduces lane-level navigation, which the company said can provide human drivers with detailed road information and lane recommendations to enhance driving safety and experience.

Chinese users in China have complained about Tesla's in-car navigation map on social media, saying it is not as detailed as maps available on smartphones. Tesla in China was not immediately available to comment.

Tesla, which only uses cameras as sensors for its autonomous driving technology, is currently in the process of introducing its 'Full Self-Driving' software system in China, which recently made progress as the company prepares to register this technologically advanced feature with authorities, Reuters reported last month.

Unlike high-definition maps that collect more detailed, sensitive geographic information to serve as an additional sensor for autonomous driving cars, navigation maps have been widely used in China to provide traffic information to human drivers.