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Smartphone makers bet on foldable screens as next big thing

Smartphone makers bet on foldable screens as next big thing

Technology
For the past few years, the smartphone industry has been searching for a breakthrough to revive a market mired in an innovation lull and a sales slump. A potential catalyst is on the horizon in the form of flexible screens that can be folded in half without breaking. Samsung and several rivals are preparing to roll out such screens to make devices more versatile for work and pleasure. The foldable screens could increase display space to the size of a mini-tablet, but fold like a wallet so they revert to the size of regular phones. But there are questions about price and durability. If the new phones fulfill their makers' ambitions, they will become a leap ahead for an industry whose origins can be traced to the old flip phones that consumers once embraced as cool and convenient. Foldable...
Driverless car makers face jail if AI causes harm

Driverless car makers face jail if AI causes harm

Technology
Makers of driverless vehicles and other artificial intelligence systems could face jail and multi-million pound fines if their creations harm workers, according to the Department of Work and Pensions. Responding to a written parliamentary question, government spokesperson Baroness Buscombe confirmed that existing health and safety law "applies to artificial intelligence and machine learning software".This clarifies one aspect of the law around AI, a subject of considerable debate in academic, legal and governmental circles.Under the Health and Safety Act of 1974, directors found guilty of "consent or connivance" or neglect can face up to two years in prison.This provision of the Health and Safety Act is "hard to prosecute," said Michael Appleby, a health and safety lawyer a...
Artisan cider makers fear new binge-drinking levy

Artisan cider makers fear new binge-drinking levy

Business
Artisan cider producers are concerned that a new levy could have a devastating impact on the industry.The legislation, to be brought in from February, would see a duty introduced on ciders with an alcohol content of between 6.9% and 7.5%.It was announced in the Budget and is aimed at cracking down on binge drinking.The target is white cider - paler in colour, cheap, with a high alcohol content, and often associated with street and underage binge drinking.But some traditional cider makers, who have been in the industry for decades, insist they will also be affected.Image:Barny Butterfield from Sandford Orchards is worried about the new levyBarny Butterfield runs Sandford Orchards in Devon, the oldest working cider shed in the country.He believes the levy could push prices up on some traditi...
Car makers offer scrappage deals in race for new customers

Car makers offer scrappage deals in race for new customers

Business
Renault-Nissan and Kia are the latest car companies to launch car trade-in schemes, aimed at persuading UK customers to swap older, more polluting, car models for new ones.Earlier Volkswagen and Toyota announced diesel scrappage schemes, joining BMW, Ford, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz and Vauxhall who have all launched schemes.The car companies will accept trade-ins from any brand registered before 2010. It comes as the "toughest ever" new-car emissions tests begin to be rolled out.Kia and Renault are offering £2,000 off new models, for part-exchanged vehicles, all of which will be taken off the road.Nissan is calling its scheme a "switch" scheme since not all the cars traded in will be scrapped. The firm is also offering a £2,000 incentive and encouraging customers to consider buying their all-