Tech Digest daily roundup: Amazon to stop accepting UK Visa credit cards


Amazon will stop accepting Visa credit cards in the UK from 19 January, the online retail giant has told customers. It said the move was due to high credit card transaction fees but said Visa debit cards would still be accepted. Visa said it was “very disappointed that Amazon is threatening to restrict consumer choice in the future”. Amazon said: “The cost of accepting card payments continues to be an obstacle for businesses striving to provide the best prices for customers.” The online giant said those costs should be going down over time due to advances in technology, “but instead they continue to stay high or even rise”. BBC 

Lucid Group’s market value blew past Ford Motor on Tuesday to $89.9 billion following a 24% runup in the EV start-up’s stock price after executives told investors that reservations for its first vehicles had jumped and that its production plans for 2022 were still on track. The surge in the stock price also brought Lucid close to eclipsing General Motors, which has a market cap of $90.9 billion. Lucid shares closed Tuesday at $55.52 a share. GM closed Tuesday at $62.61 a share, down by less than 1%. CNBC

Britain’s cyber security agency had to tackle a record 777 cyber incidents over the past year, with coronavirus vaccine research a prime target for attack. The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), part of GCHQ, said a number of the incidents were linked to hostile states, including Russia and China. This included a global hacking campaign, blamed on Russia’s foreign intelligence service, which impacted the US government most significantly. The so-called SolarWinds breach is regarded as “one of the most serious cyber intrusions of recent times”, the NCSC said in its annual review. Sky News 

A device has been created to allow dogs to video call their owners. The system, dubbed DogPhone, works when a pet picks up and shakes a ball fitted with an accelerometer. When the accelerometer senses movement, it prompts a video call on a screen connected to the device. The new invention, believed to be the first of its kind, is the brainchild of University of Glasgow’s Dr Ilyena Hirskyj-Douglas, her 10-year-old Labrador, Zack, and colleagues from Aalto University in Finland. The team behind the pet-friendly invention said the DogPhone could help address the separation anxiety of pets who have grown used to having people at home during the coronavirus pandemic. Yahoo

TikTok has unveiled a series of updates to its safety measures designed to better protect young people on the platform following a major report into how users interact with potentially harmful content. The firm’s research had looked at how young people engaged with online challenges and hoaxes, including harmful ones which attempt to coax viewers into self-harm or suicide. The video-sharing giant has said it will now start removing “alarmist warnings” about potentially harmful online challenges and hoaxes because its research found these warnings can exacerbate the problem by treating the hoax as real. Yahoo!

Google usually issues new updates to Pixels at the beginning of each month. The November update passed by a few weeks ago, bringing minor nips and tucks. However, the company has now published a surprise mid-month update to the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. Per 9to5Google, the update is numbered SD1A.210817.037 for global Pixels and SD1A.210817.037.A1 for Verizon variants. You can find download links for your specific model below. While Google hasn’t yet published a changelog, Verizon claims (h/t DroidLife) the patch “improves the performance” of the in-display fingerprint sensor. Android Authority.



Chris Price
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