Remember, darkness does not always equate to evil, just as light does not always bring good.
No other quote could explain this update 4.2.0 better that the above. The bright dashboard was a pain in the xxx. The last word was not something that was beeped, I just wrote it myself just to be different If you still didn’t get it…it is Eye. The bright dashboard was a pain for the eyes during night times and to a certain extent dangerous too. Finally we have the dark mode and it’s lovely to say the least. It was a nice coincidence that the scooter got an update on the 2nd anniversary of the day of booking.
The update download got delayed by a couple of days (read my previous post on thus topic) and due to other work I couldn’t check it immediately. Yesterday evening spent sometime and below is my experience…
I switched it on and the first screen I saw said “Completing…” with a progress bar below. Couple of minutes later I saw the message that the scooter is updated to 184.108.40.2063437.
The scooter booted up and I heard the usual “tiding” sound. But for the first time ever, my scooter dashboard didn’t turn on. The headlights were on but the screen was blank. I was fearing this but wasn’t actually expecting that.
Without panicking I turned off, removed the key and turned on again. This time there was no issue…phew!
I went into the settings screen immediately and saw the 3 new buttons Light, Dark and Auto. Light mode was on by default. Switched to Dark and in 1 second the white & green theme turned to Black and Blue theme. Nice…
Dark mode is finally here!
Took the vehicle outside to see it in the ambient light. The screen was dull and readabillity was a little too low for my liking. When I increased the brightness to almost full, it was perfect. But then I realized that during night times or in basements or if I switch back to Light mode, the LCD screen will still be too bright and dazzling at this level. Tried Autobrightness but it was (it has always been) a little too high for me.
A little too dull
Ok for outside, but too bright for night time
Although I’d have loved to use the dark mode all the time, I realised soon that in order to have the best readability/visibility and still not be dazzled by the screen, it would be best to switch to Auto mode with my preferred level of brightness.
Auto mode and preferred brightness level
Since there is no ALS, the Auto mode will apply ths dark mode from 6PM to 6AM and the Light mode from 6AM to 6PM.
Ather dashboard Auto mode
Auto mode in action
I then changed over to the navigation screen. The map screen too looks really nice in dark mode. The touchscreen panning is now really smooth.
I called my friend who also has an Ather and I wanted to show (off) him this new update and make a comparison. So I started to search for his apartment address on the navigation screen and when I selected the address from the search result, it said Connectivity issues: cannot look up . Even after repeating the search operation, I got the same error message even though there was full signal strength
Connectivity issues:cannot look up
Ather navigation connectivity issue
However, I searched the same location on the Ather app and pushed it to the scooter and it worked like a charm and immediately appearing on the scooter too.
Typing on the touchscreen has improved a lot without a doubt but it is still far away from being good…many keys are not easily recognized and need a real hard tap.
I rode to my friend’s home which is around 3kms. During the ride I noticed that my indicators were cutting off neatly…don’t know if anything was done here, but it worked perfectly. Also I noticeable was the red halo on the black dash looked stunning. I also felt that the red halo appears slower/later than it used to earlier.
Once I reached my friend’s home, we kept both scooters side by side and started comparing.
Black and white
We tested the mode retention feature…I shut down the scooter in sports mode and after restart, it stayed in sports mode. My friend’s scooter which had the previous version still, went to eco mode after shutting down in sports mode.
Ather 450 mode retention
Next I told his that it didn’t look up his home address. We tried to recreate the bug. I searched for my office address and it did so seamlessly. Then we tried to look up Ather space and the bug came back. This time the difference was that it didn’t show any error message but simply failed to complete the search and start navigation.
Ather navigation search issue
Can’t search Atherspace!
After having checked the major changes in this update, I headed back home.
To summarize: The dark mode is a major milestone in the dashboard experience and looks beautiful. Mode retention is another good thing. But still there are minor bugs which I’m sure will be addressed soon.
Humans are generally not satisfied and Ather customers are one level higher. Of the many things, in the immediate future I want 1.the light/dark mode in the app to sync with that of the scooter and 2. I want the ability to view range in different modes. Ironing out all the bugs needs no special mention of course.