Paying to beta test
A not even alpha quality product. Tesla is giving the rest of the tech world a run for their money in most shameful business practices!
Automakers can't wait to launch lucrative subscription services, such as autonomous driving assistance features – and semiconductor giants say they are providing the tools to make that happen. Intel, Nvidia, and Arm, to name three, are designing chipsets, frameworks, and services so cars can be improved through software …
I beg to differ. The existing cloud services companies are well ahead of the curve when it comes to shonky business practises - unilateral and retroactive on the fly license/ToS changes.
The economic driver for services is not the same between larger corporations and individuals. The tax model encourages businesses to go for opex over capex and when they need something, they need it to be available or risk revenue. This isn't true for most individuals. They might go for a video streaming subscription because the cost is inconsequential and there are ongoing beneficial updates in the form of new content, but I don't think that model translates to cars. The payments are large which means people start doing the maths and many people do look at how much they can sweat the asset. The viable target market is the people who buy a new car every three years. I don't think that's most people.
Banks used to make money by paying a small interest rate on customer savings, lending that money to others, charging interest and trousering the difference. Today, they charge billions in fees to the point where I need to keep just over 65,000 Pounds in my savings account for the interest generated to equal my monthly account fee. The bank says if I'm not happy I can go to another bank who all charge exactly the same fee structure within a few pence.
We used to be able to buy software for a fixed amount of cash, then use it as we saw fit. Now monopolies are forcing subscriptions, not because it's good for consumers, but to enrich their bottom lines with a continuous revenue stream. Cloud services hold your own data for ransom and if you don't render unto Caesar on a monthly basis then you lose access. They are suspending on-prem versions of their software forcing businesses into their Clouds. None of this benefits the customer, regardless of what the marketing hype says. Instead of having our data flow over a stable and secure 1GB network, it is now over the general Internet and subject to the ups and downs of TCP/IP. We get up to a dozen alerts of various Cloud service outages daily and bandwidth is never fixed or assured.
Our IT department was forced to move our mail/collaboration services to the Cloud by a group of company accountants and "progressive" VP's (That's the name they applied to themselves) who wanted "real-time" Cloud collaboration. Not one person in IT agreed with that decision, nor were they consulted. Today those accountants / VP's are the loudest complainers when their multiple pivot table linked 650 MB Excel files are slow to load. "It was never this slow before!" They write in ticket emails. They drank their own Kool-Aid and hate the taste, then they blame IT. We've lost a lot of good people who gave up in disgust at this behaviour.
One resignation letter of someone who spent 40 years in IT and had enough, said it best before he retired. "We are a client facing business dealing with literal life and death scenarios daily. You have placed both core business processes and contact with our clients in the hands of another company and now pay them monthly to maintain it. If that service ever fails and inevitably it will, people will die. The cost to corporate reputation will far exceed any loss on the GL. I do not wish to see that day."
Cloud services are a Briar Patch. Easy to upload into it and very difficult to get data out or transfer to a competitor. You can go to a rival Cloud provider, but they charge subscriptions as well. Your only choice is who you give your money too; after that you are screwed.
One day, and I suspect soon, some hax group will gain full access to back end cloud systems and cost the subscribing companies trillions in losses. That will motivate a swing back to on-prem, but only when the accountants are ankle deep in blood. And, of course, they will blame IT for it.
Rewinding to 1990s about difference between cars and Windows 95, looks like we will see cars stop for no reason, need restarting and this will be seen as normal. Definitely thinking about getting a ten year old diesel with at most a Satnav for next transport. Having a car demanding its own phone is too much like raising a teenager again
very soon you'll only be doing that, THINKING about getting a 10 yr old diesel. Unless you're one of those people who can afford anything and ah, yeah, that 10 year old diesel is what I'm missing in my collection, to drive around my estate...
If what my brother tells me is about to happen in the UK then you'll be lucky to get a ten year old diesel anything and if you are lucky to get one you might find its banned from many cities.
I do predict a 'robust' market in used vehicles. After all, a car like a Morris 1000 can be kept going indeficitely if you know the right people. The only issue will be that legislation will continually clamp down on using old vehicles in the name of environmentalism or road safety.
We asked the processor core designer how it intends to prevent miscreants from hijacking over-the-air updates to compromise people's vehicles. A spokesperson told us "the adoption of zero-trust security architecture in the automotive space is critical" to thwarting these supply-chain attacks.
I would get out the popcorn, but I would probably be late to the first crack of the over the air update.
Building security into the system should already have been defined; as always it will be an afterthought bolt-on.
> it will be an afterthought bolt-on
You're an optimist.
Security costs money, while saying "We take our customers' lives and security very seriously" is free.
Bean counters will never agree to waste money on stuff which don't yield a return on investment. At least not before there is a big uproar in public opinion, and soon-to-be-reelected politicians make it compulsory.
go and F*** right off, right now and take your subscription software services to make a car go with you.
Design the thing and test it properly in the first place,
Oh, and please use a standard aperture and ISO connector so I can throw you defective 4 year old dysfunctional radio in the bin and replace it with something that works and might last the lifetime of the car.
Dead on. I suppose they can upgrade/break the vehicle entertainment or climate control systems and such over the air without serious consequences, but if they try that with safety related features, the results are likely going to be a field day for morticians, and ambulance chasing lawyers. Elon Musk doesn't understand that. Yet. But the rest of the automotive industry likely does. I think we're likely looking at the fantasies of marketeers here, not the future.
The one hope "they" might have of pulling this nefarious scam off would seem to be maps. If future cars are dependent on maps for routine tasks, maybe they can sell the notion that having the very latest map is essential to safety and vehicle operators must pay generously for regular updates. But they better be damn sure that they can deliver valid maps reliably and never end up with cars with no usable maps at all or vectoring tens of thousands of commuting vehicles onto some dead end street instead of the bridge or tunnel entrance four streets over.
Having been in the third party aftermarket for vehicles, I kept an eye on news about maps and so forth.
I can't count the number of times drivers (in particular large trucks) got themselves stuck because they followed the satnav instructions; I strongly doubt any 'AI' (which isn't intelligent in the least) would do any better.
I was returning to the office with co-worker from London (returning to Cambridge) and on the way up the A10 (which had been redone to full dual carriageway) the satnav kept telling us to pull across over the oncoming traffic lanes to where the road had previously been.
I shudder to think that the satnav instructions might get higher priority than the sensors.
"I can't count the number of times drivers (in particular large trucks) got themselves stuck because they followed the satnav instructions;"
To be fair, that's often because the truck driver or haulage company cheaped out and bought consumer SatNavs instead paying for the ones that include narrow lane and height restriction warnings.
For years car makers have been using their map systems for more than navigating to your destination. You don't get this capability by using google maps. For example Mercedes uses your route to determine how best to optimise battery use - when to use electric, when best to optimise regeneration etc. And its three years old. The one before that had no electric motors, but could use your route to e.g. shut the windows when you went through a tunnel and return them to position when you left it (as required in e.g. Switzerland). And of course my partner loves the car knowing where it is, as the Mercedes app tells her when I'll be home :)
Ha ha. Spy in the cockpit instead of the boot.
But e.g. Toyota Prius sat nav is linked to the steering (electric position sensor) and the wheel rotation counters (highly accurate due to their torque sensors and all that), so that *when* GPS goes down, the navigation system still has a very good idea of where the car is. I once navigated the last quarter mile of a route (to a friend's house down some barely lit country roads) in fog so dense that one couldn't see 30 feet in front. I had the window down and was following the kerb at walking pace and the turn diagram was accurate still down to 2-3 yards, which TBH is probably the map data itself!
We have ways of making you comply. Sure, you can replace the radio. But we'll replace the radio service with a streaming service.
Its going to be interesting watching how this evolves. I'm expecting a Mad Max type of future where there's constant tension between vehicle owners who resort to ever more exotic modifications to keep their cars running and law enforcement (as the legal/enforcement arm of the Society of Motor Manufactures and Traders) clash in a battle of wits and will.
It seems like there is an agenda in many countries to eliminate self-employment and ability to create a new business, through excessive regulation, high taxes and other barriers.
People are meant to work for those big corporations and earn slave wages, that won't allow them to afford products to own.
People will have no choice but to use subscriptions, which is another pillar of modern slavery.
Your very own car was a strong symbol of freedom, in that it allowed you to move around freely, at your own discretion. For many people it was even the only freedom they could realistically pretend to.
Now corporate greed is about to take this away, by making your ability to move depend on you paying various subscriptions and quietly allowing them your monitor and monetize your whole life.
They would ask for your firstborn, but they have already taken him/her long ago...
That's true, but realistically it can go only so far: There comes a point in car's age where the average user can't or won't manage any more. Not everybody is able/willing to search for spare parts and/or do maintenance himself. Most users just want a car to drive around, not to spend time on. While for some it's a pleasure, for others it's a chore.
Also governments worldwide are slowly making sure old cars are phased out. Sorry, it's an uphill battle, one that is already lost. The few points of resistance won't really matter in the big picture, especially when there is so much money involved.
Yeah...no. I already had a choice to pay for onstar on my existing car (emergency assistance, some app so I could unlock my doors and for some reason check the fuel level from my phone, traffic alerts. and the gps navigation would be done via onstar instead of an on-board system.) Not interested in paying subscription fees for things like this thanks.
people no longer bat an eyelid, and search for the pitchfork as they have to pay much much more for subscription of their photoshop or office, than when they had it on their cd or dvd. I'm sure this is just the beginning of a long, profitable (for some!) road to subscription bliss. Once this model gets embedded in the car industry, there are endless possibilites on the horizon :(
Surprisingly, no. In Ye Olde Days, it was a significant part of the car’s bill-of-materials cost to include hardware features like heated seats, so a manufacturer would obviously only fit them on vehicles where the customer would pay for them. These days, it’s often only a negligible cost - or even, cheaper - to include those hardware features in every car built (e.g. no need to maintain multiple SKUs of seats, software-remappable touchscreen controls, simplified wiring loom, etc) and charge the punter an “unlock fee” to use the stuff they already have. Tesla are masters at this.