Earlier this month, venture capitalist and Tesla board member Steve Jurvetson took delivery of the first 2012 Tesla Model S to leave the factory. Now, he’s sharing his early peek (deliveries officially start tomorrow) of the production version of the electric car’s giant touch screen dashboard through a photo on Flickr.
In the picture (click to enlarge), we can see how the screen can be broken into two parts, one for navigation of the internet, the other for real-world navigation (i.e., maps). We see “tabs” for music, phone, energy and camera also available on the top of the screen, and we’re confident there are options to adjust all sorts of settings somewhere. We will learn more about this later on. For now, let’s hope that, in the real world, this screen works much better than the one in the Fisker Karma does.
Jurvetson writes that the Google map here is so different that, “It’s a bit surreal to drive with satellite view zoomed in to the max. You can see the parking lot and nearby environs in a way that is so much more contextually interesting than a desktop big screen.” He adds:
Another interesting cloud service is the album art display (here seen to the right of the speedometer, but normally on the big screen for me). No matter what the music source (radio, satellite, internet from overseas or personalized channels, bluetooth from your phone, or as in this case, MP3s on a thumb drive in one of the USB ports), the car sends a music sample for sound recognition and fetches a high-res image of the album art and the song’s metadata, so the song process bar and title are part of the display.
We’ve known since early 2011 that the 17-inch Model S touch screen will use low-power Nivdia Tegra chips. Slash Gear says that a pair Visual Computing Modules (VCM) “bursting with graphics power” drive the two screens in the car. A 12.3-inch screen takes up the more traditional info area behind the steering wheel.