Tech Digest daily roundup: Google opens its first UK tech centre for disabled

tech for disabilities
An alarm clock for people who are deaf is on display at the Google tech centre. Image: Google

If you design technology with disabled people in mind, you design technology better for everyone. This was the sentiment from Google as it opened its first UK research and development centre dedicated to making tech to help people with disabilities. The Royal National Institute of Blind People, the Royal National Institute for Deaf People and disability charity Everyone Can have worked with Google on developing the centre in London. It is the company’s first accessibility-focused site outside the US. BBC technology reporter Paul Carter said the tech being developed by Google had the “potential to be significant” for disabled people. “Technology now touches so many aspects of everyone’s daily lives, but for disabled people it can literally be life-changing,” he said. BBC 

Amazon is planning to resume multimillion-dollar advertising on Twitter, according to reports. The move will see Amazon ply about $100m (£81.3m) per year into the platform, now owned by Elon Muskaccording to Reuters news agency, citing a tweet from the tech blog Platformer. The tweet by a Platformer reporter said the company’s return is pending some “security tweaks” to Twitter‘s advertising platform. According to a Bloomberg report, Twitter’s CEO Mr Musk has said Apple Inc has also resumed its full advertising. Neither Amazon nor Apple have yet responded to the reports. Sky News 

Sky Stream
Sky has taken its satellite-free pay-TV service from the Glass television and shoved it into a tiny streaming box that you can plug into your existing kit and hook up to wifi. The Sky Stream box subscription starts at £25 a month with a £20 fee upfront, which gives you Sky’s entertainment package for 18 months plus a basic Netflix account. It then rises in price depending on any other channels or content you add. Alternatively, you can subscribe on a 31-day rolling contract and chop and change as you see fit, although without an active subscription the box becomes useless. The Guardian. 

The unabashedly liberal city of San Francisco became the unlikely proponent of weaponized police robots last week after supervisors approved limited use of the remote-controlled devices, addressing head-on an evolving technology that has become more widely available even if it is rarely deployed to confront suspects. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted 8-3 on Tuesday to permit police to use robots armed with explosives in extreme situations where lives are at stake and no other alternative is available. The authorization comes as police departments across the U.S. face increasing scrutiny for the use of militarized equipment and force amid a years-long reckoning on criminal justice. AP News 

With Samsung’s One UI 5.0 rollout going so well, the company’s probably already pretty far ahead in the development of One UI 5.1. One UI 5.1 should be the first version update to One UI 5.0, unless Samsung decides to switch things up (though it doesn’t look like Samsung will change the version number scheme for now, as the company itself confirmed recently). But when will One UI 5.1 arrive? Well, if we speculate based on Samsung’s history with One UI updates, the Galaxy S23 series should more or less be the vessel for the debut of One UI 5.1. As you would expect, One UI 5.1 will bring new features that won’t be available on older Samsung smartphones and tablets, at least not immediately anyway. SamMobile 

Chris Price
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