Tesla receives a patent for its rotating screen in the Model S

Tesla's Model S Refresh tilting screen receives a patent

Tesla’s pivoting screen in the Model S and Model X vehicles has been officially granted a patent.

The patent, dubbed “Two-Axis Rotation Mechanism,” applies to the screen in Tesla’s premium Model S and Model X vehicles. The device allows users to tilt the screen slightly, making it easier for the driver or passenger to read, see, and use .

Automotive engineer Sandy Munro and his team tore down the Model S Plaid in early 2022. During this teardown, Munro’s team uncovered the hidden mechanism that would eventually be used to rotate the screen.

However, the device built into Munro’s Model S Plaid lacked a few features to be fully functional. The team delved deeper into the mechanism and modified it to show how it would work in the Model S and Model X in the future.

The missing parts in Munro’s Model S Plaid mechanism meant Tesla would improve the part in the future.

The US Patent Office published Tesla’s “Two-Axis Rotational Mechanism” on November 24, 2022. The patent was originally filed six months prior to May 16, 2022, as was an earlier version of the patent from 2021.

“The display device is mounted on a rotary mechanism that allows for biaxial rotation using a single actuator, two pivot joints, and associated linkages,” the patent states. “The rotational component further includes at least one additional floating joint that provides additional tensioning forces relative to a third axis. In addition, according to other embodiments, a control component can be used to generate control signals related to the rotation of the individual actuators, such as. B. setting up control positions and duty cycles.”

Since Munro’s initial teardown, Tesla has implemented the tilting screen in later versions of the Model S and Model X. With all the “cool” technology that Elon Musk talked about being put into the Cybertruck, we wouldn’t be surprised if that feature showed up in this vehicle as well.

The Cybertruck frame was recently found at a Tesla facility, and Tesla still aims to start production in just about six months.

A look at the audio quality of Apple Music

Apple Music may be available in Tesla’s new Christmas update, but don’t expect the lossless audio quality that Apple Music subscribers are enjoying… at least not yet.

Tesla owner and software developer Dan Burkland recently ran some audio quality tests streaming in-vehicle from Tesla’s in-car streaming services TIDAL, Spotify and now Apple Music.

Burkland has previously tested TIDAL on a different Tesla software version, but with Tesla’s ever-changing software and the arrival of the Christmas update, he decided to run the tests again.

Setup and songs used for testing

He connected his Model Y to his home’s WiFi network and used a DHCP reservation that allowed the vehicle to use a specific IP address. He then installed ntopng on his OPNsense firewall to monitor traffic statistics for the vehicle. After zeroing out the host stats for the Model Y, he tested a total of nine songs, including Prince’s “Purple Rain,” Boston’s “Foreplay,” and Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir.”

Results

The results of Burkland’s tests concluded that TIDAL still offered the best listening experience. The average bitrate for TIDAL was ~1165 kbps. That’s not too shocking as TIDAL has always been committed to the highest quality audio streaming experience.

Surprisingly, Spotify’s audio quality landed in second place ahead of Apple Music. Burkland’s tests showed Spotify streaming at an average bitrate of ~157 kbps, while Apple Music underperformed at ~118 kbps.

Burkland added that he believes Apple Music will limit the bitrate for the in-car app, but hopefully a future update to Tesla’s software will resolve this. If Tesla can provide lossless streaming for Apple Music, it will rival TIDAL for high-fidelity streaming through the in-car app.

Check out some of Dan’s test results below, or check out his Reddit thread for a full list.

So many tears from 2Pac Young Lust by Pink Floyd Dancing in the Dark by Bruce Springsteen
Length (MM:SS) 3:59 3:30 4:05
length (seconds) 239 210 245
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 96 Kbps (MB) 2.80 2.46 2.87
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 128 Kbps (MB) 3.73 3.28 3.83
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 160 Kbps (MB) 4.67 4.1 4.79
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 192 Kbps (MB) 5.60 4.92 5.74
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 256 Kbps (MB) 7.47 6.56 7.66
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 320 Kbps (MB) 9.34 8.2 9.57
European daylight saving time. Data transfer at 1411 Kbps (MB) 41.17 36.17 42.2
Apple Music (MB) 4.10 3.20 4.80
Apple Music (Bitrate – Kbps) 140.53 124.83 160.50
Spotify (MB) 6.70 5.80 2.90
Spotify (Bitrate – Kbps) 229.65 226.26 96.97
Tides (MB) 27.40 21.50 30.50
Tide (Bitrate – Kbps) 939.17 838.70 1019.82

Other Tesla owners are running similar tests

Reddit user u/OverlyOptimisticNerd ran similar tests with a slightly different configuration. They used an iPhone 14 as a mobile hotspot, Hotspot Monitor Data Usage from Apple’s App Store, and 2019 Model 3 with version 2022.44.25.1.

During their testing, they observed the same pattern across all songs, citing that a bunch of data rolled in at the start of testing and then slowly leaked out. The low data rate for Apple Music appears to match the company’s HE-AAC codec at 64 kbps.

“It seems to buffer most or even all of the song and then pause between tracks to do it again,” writes u/OverlyOptimisticNerd. “On average I saw ~2MB per track, with ~1.7MB during the first burst and ~0.3MB throughout the track. This conforms to the HE-AAC standard as most of these songs were just over 3 minutes long.”

While Apple Music may have the lowest average bitrate of all three services tested, it’s important to note that that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the lowest quality. Audio quality depends on a variety of factors, including the bitrate used, whether it’s variable, and codec efficiency.

Apple Music’s HE-ACC codec is optimized for low-bandwidth applications, meaning it can outperform an ACC-encoded file in low-bandwidth situations. In the real world, Apple Music in your Tesla should sound very similar to streaming music from Spotify, but not as good as TIDAL’s offerings.

Tesla vehicles are well prepared for winter temperatures.

Teslas are among the most efficient electric vehicles in cold weather, according to a study by Recurrent.

Cold weather often affects EV range for two reasons. The colder weather changes the battery chemistry slightly; therefore the range is reduced. The reduced range could mean some owners will have to alter their travels in the winter months compared to warmer times of the year.

heaters for electric vehicles

However, heat generation has the largest share in the shorter range of electric vehicles. Because electric vehicles are much more efficient than their internal combustion engine counterparts, they generate very little excess heat. While heat is a by-product of gasoline engines and can be channeled into the cabin to keep passengers warm, electric vehicles need to generate additional heat to keep their passengers comfortable.

resistance heaters

This is typically done in two ways, either by electrical resistance heating or by a heat pump. A resistance heater is like a space heater that you can use in your home. Electric current flows through wires, causing them to heat up, and the heat is then blown out into space.

heat pumps

Heat pumps are more complicated and work very differently than resistance heaters, but they are also more efficient in most cases. They work by using outside air to heat a refrigerant, which is then pressurized to raise the temperature of the refrigerant. The refrigerant then flows into the interior of the passenger compartment where it is passed by the vehicle air, causing it to heat up and flow into the passenger compartment. While heat pumps are much more efficient compared to electric heaters, this efficiency drops the colder it is outside.

Which Teslas have heat pumps?

All newer Teslas use heat pumps instead of resistance heaters due to their higher efficiency. All redesigned Model S and X vehicles use heat pumps, as does all Model Y vehicles. However, some Model 3 vehicles between 2017 and 2020 use resistance heaters to heat the interior, making them less efficient in colder months.

Find out your heating type

If you don’t know if your Tesla has a heat pump or resistance heater, you can find out by simply looking into your car’s software. Your vehicle’s heater type is listed when you navigate to Controls > Software and then tap Additional Vehicle Information.

Because of Tesla’s unique heating system and its efficiency, Recurrent found that Tesla vehicles have one of the best ranges of any electric car. As a result, Tesla owners may not need to make as many changes to their commutes. They can handle this due to their state-of-the-art battery technology, as well as the use of local heating through heated seats, steering wheel and cabin, and their advanced heat pumps.

Tesla vehicles are well prepared for winter temperatures.

A new study published by Recurrent pulled data from 7,000 electric vehicles from the 14 most popular brands, including Audi, BMW, Hyundai and Tesla. Data for each vehicle was collected via onboard telemetry and real-time usage. The vehicles were used in temperatures below freezing (20-30 degrees Fahrenheit) and warm temperatures of 70 degrees Fahrenheit. When temperatures drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, heat pumps become less efficient.

Recurrent’s results concluded that Tesla’s Long Range AWD Model Y and Model X 75D lost 15%, while the Long Range Model 3 with 75kWh battery lost 17% and the Model S P100D lost 19%. Compared to the Chevy Bolt, which lost 32%, and Ford’s Mustang Mach-E, which lost 30%, Tesla’s vehicles appear better equipped for cold weather. Unfortunately, Recurrent tested older Teslas that didn’t include heat pumps, meaning Tesla’s numbers would have been even better had Recurrent used newer models. Despite this, Tesla had some of the most powerful vehicles.

Comparison of heat pumps and resistance heaters in Teslas

As Tesla continues to make improvements to its vehicles, their battery supplier CATL recently announced that they have produced a battery that offers 430 miles of range.

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