The coronavirus has been hitting the headlines in February, causing huge disruption across the world. For the tech sector in particular, it’s had an impact on supply chains and the GSMA was forced to cancel Mobile World Congress after a string of big tech firms pulled out. Despite the chaos, it’s also been a month of lots of environmental news and stories on social media regulation ahead of the U.S election. Here’s what we’ve been reading about this month:
The month kicked off with the launch of the UN climate summit, COP26, due to be held in Glasgow later this year. During the launch, the government announced plans to ban the sale of petrol, diesel and hybrid cars by 2035 as well as announcing the goal to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Read the full live coverage from the day on BBC News.
Mark Zuckerberg spoke out following the decision not to ban political adverts on Facebook by unveiling a new approach to political advertising that supports free speech. Read the full story on The Guardian. Twitter, on the other hand, took its stance on political content a step further by announcing that it will ban deepfakes over fears that it will spread misinformation ahead of the US election. See The Telegraph for more information.
In the gaming world, Nvidia jumped on the bandwagon of Google’s Stadia, announcing a new game cloud-streaming service called GeForce. The Financial Times has all the details. And cloud gaming services have caused a stir at Microsoft as head of gaming exec, Phil Spencer, said he now considered Amazon and Google the top competitors for Xbox because of their cloud-computing infrastructure. Read more on BBC News.
Self-driving cars in the UK achieved a new milestone this month by completing the longest and most complex journey made by an autonomous vehicle in the UK. The Nissan Leaf drove for 230 miles unassisted, navigating motorways, roundabouts and unmarked country lanes. Head over to The Independent for the full story.
The Daily Mail reported on the UK’s broadband woes, saying that more than six in ten regularly lose their internet at home with more than four in ten of those who complained saying that their internet service provider handled the situation badly. However, rest assured for Three users as the network announced that it will be offering its 5G package to customers by the end of February. More on this on The Metro.
It was a bad quarter for tech firms at the end of last year in terms of revenue according to CityAM. Political uncertainty, declines in staff hires and new business activity are to blame. The good news is, investment and innovation in 5G, automation and AI this year in the UK is likely to give UK tech businesses a boost in 2020.
And finally, February also means that it’s Valentine’s Day and our favourite V day story came from The Metro who told the story of a marriage proposal where a man used a corn-planting machine in a field to pop the question before getting his girlfriend to fly a drone to reveal the message – she said yes and now, a year later, the message can now be seen on Google maps, N’awh!
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