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One of Tesla's most groundbreaking features is its user interface. Model S is the first vehicle to be controlled by a single integrated operating system. As innovative as Model S user interface(UI) is, the Model 3 UI presages something much more revolutionary. The Model 3 lacks dashboard knobs, visible vents, and other tactile controls that drivers have been fiddling with for almost a century. You have to use the touchscreen even to adjust the windshield wipers, or to open the glovebox. The Model 3 have a giant screen placed right in the middle of the car. Consider the screen resolution, which is 1,920 x 1,200 pixels. That's an HDTV, which suggests that Tesla intends the center console to be used for watching movies and other media. The conclusion is that the Model 3 isn't really designed for drivers - it's optimized for the driverless future, not so much a car as "a mobile living room." In fact, features such as a camera that monitors the interior cabin; software-controllable access to the glove box, trunk and frunk; the ability to unlock and start the car with a smartphone app - seem designed to enable Model 3 to operate as a self-driving taxi on the Tesla Network. Once the Model 3 will be capable of full autonomy, it represents nothing less than a revolution in the automotive industry - Model 3 is the first production vehicle in history designed to operate without a human driver. Model 3 points the way to an electric, interconnected, self-driving future. Not everyone is happy about it, but that future is coming, and automakers, investors, and consumers will have to decide whether they want to be drivers, passengers or roadkill.

September 30, 2019

Building an electric vehicle charging station is not a simple task. And the task becomes even harder if you're planning to build a network of charging stations around the world. According to a UBS report published in early 2017, the cost to build a supercharging station is a cool $250,000. When Tesla started selling its cars, it would've been more than happy to get a third party to share the burden of building charging stations. But who else would've been ready to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars (per station) and wait years before recouping their investment. Add the fact that electric cars, like Tesla, were viewed as huge unknowns ten years ago - no one really knew, at the time, how car buyers accustomed to a gas powered paradigm would respond to an alternative technology. A vicious cycle ensued. Without a charging network, long distance travel would have remained a pipe dream, and without long distance travel, Tesla would find itself tagged as a city car, thereby reducing demand. And without demand, Tesla couldn't expand its charging network. Tesla knew this early on - they'd have to "go it alone" without any outside support. So the company took the burden upon itself to build a network of supercharging stations. Tesla's grand ambitions sparked the company to invest in an ever growing supercharger network over the years. By the end of 2014, Tesla had just 280 supercharger stations worldwide; by 2016, it had grown to 790 stations; and by June 2019, Tesla increased that number to 1587. If the company upgrades all its stations to V3 superchargers, it would essentially double the strength of its network, as V3 superchargers offer a 50% improvement in charging time compared to the company's previous generation supercharging tech. Five minutes to gain 75 miles of charge is a major achievement as it will have a huge impact on Tesla and EV adoption in the future.

September 24, 2019

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