Tech Digest daily roundup: Cornwall prepares for UK’s first orbital rocket launch


There’s a “bubbling of excitement” in the team preparing for the UK’s first orbital rocket launch but they are “laser sharp” as final checks are carried out, says the mission’s boss. The Start Me Up mission sets out from Spaceport Cornwall at Newquay Airport, with the launch window now starting around 10.16pm on Monday. It will be the first orbital launch from UK soil – or anywhere in western Europe – and comes after technical issues pushed it back from before Christmas. “Space launch is a very serious business and we’ll be looking at integrating all the information about the system, about the weather, about the range,” said Virgin Orbit boss Dan Hart. Sky News 

Men are around twice as likely as women to have had their identity stolen, a survey suggests. More than one in 10 (11%) women said their identity had been stolen, with nearly a quarter (23%) of men also saying this, Nationwide Building Society found. Of those who said their identity was stolen, a third (33%) said it had been used to order goods such as a mobile phone or a vehicle in their name. More than a quarter (27%) said it was used to access or steal from their accounts. One in five (20%) said it was used to borrow money in their name, such as by taking out a credit card or a personal loan. Yahoo!

The number of active users on the Mastodon social network has dropped more than 30% since the peak and is continuing a slow decline, according to the latest data posted on its website. There were about 1.8 million active users in the first week of January, down from over 2.5 million in early December. Mastodon, an open-source network of largely independently hosted servers, has often been touted as an alternative to Twitter. And its growth appears connected to controversies at Twitter. But for many it doesn’t fulfil the role that Twitter did and experts say it may be too complicated to really replace it. The Guardian

Electric vehicles can be more expensive to fill up on the open road than their petrol and diesel equivalents as the cost of utilities continue to spiral…The Daily Mail found that the new Kia Niro EV would cost £51.19 to charge from empty with the Osprey network for a quoted estimated range of 285 miles. The new Niro (mild) hybrid petrol variant would cost £64.70 to fill from empty at the current average UK petrol price of £1.54/litre. Although that is more than the electric vehicle (EV), it can cover more than double the range, making it cheaper mile for mile. Daily Mail 

We’re getting new Samsung Galaxy S23 leaks and rumors pretty much every day at this point, and today’s is around price – with indications that you’re going to have to pay a bit more to get your hands on this year’s flagship phones. As per Twitter tipster @OreXda (via Notebookcheck, in South Korea we’re looking at prices of 1,199,000 won for the standard model, 1,397,000 won for the Plus edition, and 1,599,400 won for the top-end Ultra version of the Galaxy S23. For context, in the same country the Samsung Galaxy S22 cost 999,900 won, the Galaxy S22 Plus cost 1,199,000 won, and the Galaxy S22 Ultra went on sale for 1,452,000 won. We’re looking at a price jump of around 10-20% if those figures are correct. Tech Radar


Chris Price
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