EU authorities weigh in on stablecoins
The European Council and the European Commission have stated that digital currencies such as Facebook’s Libra should not be allowed in the European Union until the risks they could pose are properly addressed. So-called 'stablecoins' may present opportunities in terms of cheap and fast payments, especially cross-border payments, the statement explained, but “at the same time, these arrangements pose multifaceted challenges and risks related for example to consumer protection, privacy, taxation, cyber security and operational resilience, money laundering, terrorism financing, market integrity, governance and legal certainty”.
ICO and Alan Turing Institute open AI consultation
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) and the Alan Turing Institute have started a consultation to build guidance about explaining the decisions made by artificial intelligence (AI). The first draft of regulatory guidance into the use of AI is out for consultation until 24 January, and is aimed at data scientists, app developers, business owners or data protection practitioners whose organisations are using, or thinking about using, AI to support, or to make, decisions about individuals.
Counter-drone technology gets government approval
Dedrone has been awarded certification from the UK’s Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) for its counter-drone technology platform. DroneTracker detects, tracks and identifies drones by using multi-sensor capability, combining radio frequency, radar and optical sensors.
Locum’s Nest launches digital bank for NHS
Locum’s Nest, the British HealthTech platform for locums, has launched The Digital Collaborative Bank, the NHS’ first digital collaborative staff bank for doctors, in partnership with eight Acute NHS Trusts. The bank will provide locum doctors with an online platform to access shifts at all participating Trusts, aiming to create one national staffing pool across the whole of the NHS, to help save £1 billion by 2025.
Page and Brin step back from Alphabet leadership
Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the chief executive and president, respectively, of Alphabet, have decided to leave these roles. A statement from Google’s parent company explained that they will continue their involvement as co-founders, shareholders and members of the board of directors.
Millennials and Gen Z drive digital-first CX future
Almost 60 per cent of Generation Z and Millennials have used private social messaging for customer service, compared to 38 per cent of Generation X, 19 per cent of Baby Boomers and 16 per cent of the Silent Generation. This is according to a NICE inContact survey with more than 2,550 consumers across the globe, which also revealed that the majority of Generation Z and Millennials want companies to allow them to interact with customer service using private social messaging apps (72 per cent and 69 per cent, respectively).
Prime minister pledges to make BigTech pay UK taxes
Boris Johnson has pledged to implement an 'Amazon tax' in the UK, forcing US tech giants to pay more tax on their digital sales, despite opposition from Donald Trump. The British prime minister announced yesterday that he would push ahead with a digital sales tax ahead of today’s Nato summit.
83% of Scots want more digitised public services
Over 80 per cent of Scottish citizens want to see their councils use a wider range of digital technologies, according to research from Capita and the Scottish Wide Area Network (SWAN). They commissioned Opinium to survey 2,000 Scots during ths summer, finding that 84 per cent believed public services should embrace more digital technologies, with growing interest in concepts such as smart cities and the potential for connected devices in hospitals
British businesses missing out on RPA ROI
British businesses are missing out on the benefits of automation by not combining the right technologies, research from ABBYY has found. While 19 in 20 businesses have deployed some form of automation, only one in 20 use the full stack, meaning most businesses are missing out on what the firm calls the ‘secret weapons’ that could deliver the most return on investment (ROI).
Wireless Broadband Alliance hails WiFi6 test
The Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) has confirmed the successful completion of its phase one trial of Wi-Fi 6 infrastructure and services at the Mettis Aerospace factory in the UK. The trial was the first of its kind in the world and an important part of the WBA's test and development program, which included applications of 4K video streaming, large scale file transfers, messaging and voice/video communications, and the first stage of Internet of Things (IoT) sensor and mixed reality testing.
MindFolio launches community engagement platform
Real estate consultancy MindFolio has launched LociLab, a community engagement platform for consumer insights to help shape the development of the public realm. Through an online community, LociLab engages users in the early stages of planning, obtaining local public opinion via daily polls, topical discussion on message boards and integrated surveys, to provide a deeper understanding of consumer demographics and psychographics.
Catapult to develop energy data platform
The Energy Systems Catapult (ESC) has awarded a contract to Urban Tide to develop a data platform for the Energy Revolution Integration Service (ERIS). The £500,000 deal with the smart cities data specialist is to produce system for data storage on projects run by itself and its partners, with the capability to make it privately or publicly accessible.
90% of UK enterprises face ‘major cloud migration problems’
Cloudhouse research has revealed that 90 per cent of UK enterprises in the FTSE 100 and 250 have run into major problems migrating legacy business applications to the cloud as part of their digital transformation, with 84 per cent holding applications back. Interviewing 50 senior IT decision-makers within the UK’s largest enterprises, the firm found that almost all companies (96 per cent) are still running applications on legacy Windows operating systems.