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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There are a number of small bugs in the car’s software and I’m wondering if any of these might be addressed by having the software updated.

- Radio volume often turns down a couple of notches before it turns up

- Bluetooth music often doesn’t start playing unless I power off and power back on the radio

- If I connect through iPod mode, on-screen data (song info, etc) doesn’t change reliably


I’m also thinking of having the NAV updated so I can do the USB update of the maps. Is there any improvement to the Navigation routing in later updates, or simply the addition of this feature?

Last thing, which could be software but probably isn’t, the high-speed setting for the wipers in this car is not fast enough. It’s not as fast as any of our other cars, and can’t keep up during heavy summer thunderstorms. Doesn’t feel like anything is wrong, just the top speed is too low.

Anything else of interest addressed in software updates? Not sure off-hand what version I’m on, but can update later today.

2013 T6.

Thanks!
 

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I have the 2013 T6, and share your frustration over software. I recently had the car to the dealer for a check-up, and asked if there was a bug fix for the audio system not remembering the volume setting when the car is parked or simply restarted. The dealer wanted $290 to "try an update", but couldn't guarantee improvement.
Volvo has not kept up with the embedded software industry's standards for compatabilty testing, and dealers are gun-shy about updating module software because it sometimes locks up the entire car from operating. That tells you that Volvo is only testing the factory-flashed software configs.

Let's be honest...the number of modules with software has exploded in these luxury cars to several dozen. The software engineers at Volvo were only looking at feature creep, many using cross-module cooperation. Your windshield wipers are a good example....at a minimum, they depend upon the right stalk buttons and their controller, the forward camera and its module, and the engine-start button and its module (for the wiper park feature). The modules talk over a CANbus, and as such, lack a deterministic message flow. Your Sensus entertainment system isn't self-contained in one module -- it's hooked into the steering wheel controls, and the driver's door module (which decides when to shut down audio when parking and getting out). I'm a former software engineer, and it's mind-boggling how much multi-module systems integration Volvo (and the other car companies) bought into.

There are gazillions of embedded sw products out there, but most all have one hex file (flashable executable), which supports orderly updates.

PCs are probably the state-of-the-art in multi-module software. Apple and Lenovo have invested heavily in field-upgradabilty -- they demonstrate that it can work.
But, the planning to be able to do this goes back to the 80s, when EPROMS and FPGAs entered the fray.

Write a suggestion to Volvo Cars USA to improve their field upgradeability of software, backed by the necessary configuration testing, bug-fix database, and compatibility guidance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
So I take it there isn't much to the dealer software updates? :p

I was under the impression that there were at least basic bug fixes provided?
 

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Radio volume turning down before up sounds to me like the volume knob might be glitching, I recognize what you're describing from a friends' Volvo that is kind of the same. Or do you have the same problem with the steering wheel buttons?

I think a software update might be worth the try at least. I have the pre-sensus interior but I have different bugs. Dealer quoted me around 1300 SEK or $130 to update two control modules which I felt was much for an occasional hick-up fix so I haven't bothered. All your bugs seem to pertain to the stereo so that makes it seem more worth it.

Re the wipers it's probably hardware, either the motor or the configuration of the wiper arms that limits them from being faster. In my experience I've only had issues in very heavy rain at higher speeds so I always thought it was the driving speed that was limiting, not the wiper speed. What cars do you have that have faster wipers? lol

(Doesn't volvo provide software update when you do a service at the dealers? I think, but I'm not sure, that my dealer told me they don't always update all software, eg ones that aren't ECM or TCM, because it takes hours to update some of the e.g radio/multimedia control modules so they only do it if the customer is complaining about issues).
 

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So I take it there isn't much to the dealer software updates? :p

I was under the impression that there were at least basic bug fixes provided?
The dealer will do Volvo-recommended system updates - typically done within the warranty period. These updates are system-tested by Volvo. They don't publish which modules are being reflashed in these updates (altho the CEM is a given). There's a good chance that if your car was never given one of these updates, it lacks bug-fixes that the dealer can provide under a system-update. The problem is that the dealer doesn't have any detailed info from Volvo as to what bugs are being fixed. If the car is under warranty, Volvo dealers do these updates free of charge.

If the car is out of warranty, chances are that Volvo software engineers are no longer working on bug-fixes for that MY. The people who know the most about module software compatibility on older models are Xemodex.

Anyone can rent a VIDA subscription, and access the same system update for your MY that the dealer accesses. That system update has been field-tested, so it's good stuff (assuming your Volvo has not had any module hardware replaced). But this exercise would be pointless if your car already has the latest and greatest. Did you look up the maintenance history on Carfax? Does it show a software update having been done?

As far as pulling down single modules, this is where there's too much guesswork -- it could introduce new problems. If you go that route, you are now the software tester, and you're paying through the teeth just to try it out. Much safer to stick to a system update.

For a picture of all the software modules in a current Volvo, see page 2 of:
https://assets.volvocars.com/uk/~/m...aintenance/volvo_software_update.pdf?la=en-gb
 
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