Uber’s JUMP launches e-bike hire in London

Uber is launching a trial of its electric bike service JUMP in London this week, as the ride hailing giant seeks to diversify its range of services in the capital. A total of 350 free JUMP bikes will be available to rent in Islington from Friday, with plans to expand into other London boroughs if the service proves successful, according to Reuters news.

Salesforce launches $125m cloud startup scheme

Software giant Salesforce has launched a $125 million fund to support the growth of innovative cloud startup companies. The Europe Trailblazer fund, launch by Salesforce Ventures, the company’s investment arm, will be used to help growth and development of companies pioneering digital payments, machine vision, artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain and the API economy.

Major automakers launch first EV charging station in UK

Major car manufacturers including Daimler, Ford, BMW and Volkswagen have launched their joint venture for electric vehicle (EV) charging, IONITY, in the UK. The UK’s first IONITY station will be operated by Motor Fuel Group on their forecourt in Maidstone in Kent.

Academic warns over IoT legal liability

As connected devices increasingly control systems capable of inflicting death or personal injury, a new wave of liability is set to wash over the world of cyber security: strict liability for defective products. The warning came from Robert Carolina, executive director at Royal Holloway University’s Institute for Cyber Security Innovation, who wrote in a new paper that as the Internet of Things (IoT) grows, risks caused by cyber security failures also grow.

Retailers concerned over impact of AI & IoT

Nearly three quarters of retail professionals believe that artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT) will be the biggest IT challenges over the next five years. A study of 200 retail professionals carried out by cloud solutions firm Cradlepoint for this year’s RetailEXPO event, found that 72 per cent saw new technologies including AI and connected devices as the main disruptors of the next half decade.

Y Combinator seeks Government 2.0 startups

Silicon Valley startup incubator Y Combinator has put out a call for tech companies which can solve the problems of government. Specifically, it is seeking to fund startups creating solutions that provide Americans with the foundations for economic growth, rather than looking to replace the government and its policymakers.

EU highlights China tech transfer problem

The European Union Chamber of Commerce in China has raised significant concerns about European companies being forced to transfer technology in China, despite Beijing stating the problem does not exist. China's trading partners have long complained that their companies are often compelled to hand over proprietary technology in exchange for trading access to the world's second-largest economy.

Call for ethical biometrics and facial recognition tech

The Biometrics Institute (BI) has called on governments, law enforcement agencies and border authorities to ensure the responsible use of biometrics such as facial recognition technology. The independent ethics watchdog warned that failure to make use of good practice guidelines could result in the public losing trust in the application of biometrics with policing and counter-terrorist procedures.

US eases Huawei restrictions

The US has announced a temporary reversal of certain trade restrictions on Chinese technology firm Huawei after customer fears of disruption to services sent global tech shares sliding yesterday. The US government placed the Chinese telecoms firm on an exports blacklist last week after long running concerns that the company’s hardware could be used to facilitate Chinese intelligence gathering – an allegation that has been vigorously denied by Huawei.

Government expands use of ePassport gates

From today, visitors from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States will be able to use ePassport gates at ports across the UK in a move designed to speed up border controls for low-risk countries. There were over 10 million arrivals in the UK by nationals from these countries in 2017. In the year ending September 2018, 51.9 million passengers used them across the UK and juxtaposed controls.

Smart city tech revenues to reach $4bn by 2023

Smart city traffic technology solutions deployed to ease chronic congestion in cities will generate $4.4 billion in revenue in 2023, up from $2 billion in 2019, according to Juniper Research. These solutions typically use sensors in combination with machine learning algorithms to dynamically alter traffic light phasing according to traffic levels; smoothing urban traffic flows.

Digital transformation outstrips cyber threat

The fast pace of digital transformation is outstripping the cyber security capabilities of UK businesses, according to a new report from KPMG. A survey of more than 1,800 chief information security officers (CISOs) and 2,000 consumers - including 100 CISOs and more than 100 consumers in the UK - found that, despite the evident risk to customer relationships of a breach of financial data, more than half (55 per cent) of UK CISOs prioritise financial loss and reputational risk in the event of a breach above the impact of such an incident on customer relationships.