Tech Digest daily roundup: Smart meter homes to get discounts for cutting peak-time energy use


Households will be offered discounts on their electricity bills if they cut peak-time use on a handful of days over the winter, as part of National Grid’s efforts to avoid blackouts. The network operator has announced details of the scheme, which it said could save households up to £100. There will be 12 “test” days initially, designed to see how customers respond, between November and March. But only homes with smart meters will be able to take part. Only 14 million, less than half, of households in England, Scotland and Wales, where the scheme is being tested, have a smart electricity meter installed. BBC

Twitter employees are finding out whether they are being laid off today – one week after Elon Musk’s takeover. The social network’s offices are temporarily closed globally, and workers will find out their fate by 4pm UK time. Those who are losing their jobs will receive a message to their personal email address, while employees staying on will get an email to their work account. The company employs around 8,000 workers in total and has staff based in London and Manchester. An internal memo said: “In an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce on Friday.” Sky News 

Following a launch event in Amsterdam , the Matter smart home standard is finally happening, and it’s arriving with almost 200 certified devices out of the gate. The Matter 1.0 standard was first launched roughly a month ago, and the Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA), which controls that spec, is today launching Matter with some big promises and some big numbers. One of the biggest announcements comes in the reveal that there are 190 products that have received certification for Matter or are currently in the process of being certified. That includes the Philips Hue Bridge, the network-connected device that controls Philips Hue bulbs and accessories. 9to5Google 


The successor to OPPO’s Find X5 Pro is currently believed to launch with no more than 3 rear cameras – however, that might not matter, as each one of those shooters is thought to step up to a 50MP resolution. The highest-end CMOS among these sensors is thought to be unveiled as the Sony IMX989. Should that be the case, this would empower OPPO to tout the Find X6 Pro as its first-gen 1-inch camera flagship smartphone (not to mention its first device with a Hasselblad-branded emoji for a camera hump). Now, according the famous leaker Digital Chat Station, the cutting-edge mobile camera will be so powerful that it will be able to record HDR video at night in 4K. Notebook Check

The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia has launched an electric car company in an effort to take on Tesla and supercharge the kingdom’s automotive sector. Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, unveiled plans for Ceer, the country’s first electric car company. A joint venture between the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund and Taiwanese technology company Foxconn, the new company will use technology licensed from Germany’s BMW and sell cars across the Middle East.  The Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) was previously a major investor in Elon Musk’s electric car company Tesla, but sold down nearly all of its multibillion-dollar stake in 2019. Telegraph 

Chris Price
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