Shiny Shiny daily round up: £3K budget EV outselling Tesla

A budget electric vehicle (EV) selling in China for $4,500 (£3,200) – pictured above – is now outselling Tesla’s more upmarket cars. The compact car is proving a big hit for state-owned SAIC Motor, China’s top automaker. The Hong Guang Mini EV is being built as part of a joint venture with US car giant General Motors (GM). Last month sales of the budget electric car in China were around double those of Tesla. While the $4,500 Hong Guang Mini is the most popular model, there is an upgraded one with air conditioning for just over $5,000. The cars are being marketed as “the people’s commuting tool”. See story here:

England’s eagerly awaited non-essential stores’ reopening date of 12 April may come too late to stop a permanent change in the way Brits shop, according to home delivery expert ParcelHero. It says UK shoppers spent an average £3,379 online last year, more than consumers in any other country. Brits’ annual online shopping bonanza eclipsed Denmark’s £3,056 average online spend and America’s £2,753 average. See full story here:

Asian elephants at a British zoo are helping train thermal imaging cameras to accurately detect the endangered animals in the wild. The cameras have so far captured more than 30,000 images of elephants at Whipsnade Zoo in Bedfordshire, led by Zoological Society of London (ZSL). The tech can detect the zoo’s Asian elephants 24 hours a day, even in total darkness, by identifying their unique heat signatures. Once positioned in the wild, the cameras will accurately confirm the presence of an elephant and send text messages to local communities or response teams in order to help to avoid conflict between humans and the endangered animals. See The Daily Mail for the full story. 

GCHQ has said it believes it can use artificial intelligence (AI) to help expose disinformation attacks by hostile foreign states trying to undermine UK democracy. This includes, the agency said, uncovering “deepfake” videos and audio material spread online to mislead the public. AI could also be used to help tackle child sex abuse, trafficking and cyber-attacks because of its ability to analyse huge volumes of data at speed. Ahead of the publication of a new paper offering an “ethical framework” for the use of AI in its operations, Jeremy Fleming, the director of GCHQ, called the impact of AI on his agency “profound”. See full story on Sky News. 

Twitter Inc said on Thursday it expects to double its annual revenue to at least $7.5 billion in 2023. The social network expects to reach at least 315 million monetizable daily active users (mDAU) by the fourth quarter of 2023. Twitter defines mDAU as the number of daily users who can view ads. The company’s shares were up nearly 7% in trading before the bell. See story on Reuters

A flying car maker is going public with a $6.6bn valuation in a deal with a company created by the founders of LinkedIn and Zynga. California-based Joby Aviation is a leader in the fast-growing world of electrically powered vertical takeoff and landing (EVTOL) aircraft that could transform air transport. Joby is combining with Reinvent Technology Partners, a special purpose acquisition company (Spac) created by entrepreneurs Reid Hoffman, creator of LinkedIn, and Mark Pincus of videogame company Zynga. Full story in The Telegraph

Chris Price