Zone’s Rianna Mitchell handpicks and shares the five best news stories on digital trends, experiences and technologies…
1. Goodbye, Clubcard app
Tesco has warned Clubcard holders have only a matter of weeks before the supermarket shuts down the app. The change, impacting millions of shoppers who currently use the popular feature to reduce their shopping bills, will be effective in every Tesco store, including Tesco Express and Tesco Metro, from April 18.
Next month, shoppers must download the Tesco Grocery & Clubcard app to access their points and vouchers, where current Clubcard points will automatically roll over. The new app will allow shoppers to pay, view their points balance, spend Clubcard vouchers, order deliveries, and check stock in Tesco stores.
2. Putting waste heat to good use
Waste heat from computing infrastructure could save public swimming pools facing closure amid soaring energy bills. Tech start-up Deep Green has trialled the idea at Exmouth Leisure Centre, where the heat from a data centre is transferred to the swimming pool through a heat exchanger to keep it warm.
The innovative solution can reduce carbon footprint and energy bills, as the leisure centre has seen a 62% drop in gas needed to heat the pool, cutting its bills by £20,000 a year. Swimming pools are just the start of harnessing waste heat as global companies like Amazon look into data centres for heating buildings and apartments.
3. NatWest limits crypto transfers
NatWest announced restrictions on consumers sending money to cryptocurrency exchanges. The UK bank imposed new limits on the daily and monthly amount, allowing customers to only transfer £5,000 per 30-day period, with no more than £1,000 per day.
In the largely unregulated world of crypto trading, the bank said the move has come to protect consumers from “crypto-criminals” and losing life-changing sums of money. Consumers across the UK lost £329m in crypto crime last year, exacerbated by the cost-of-living crisis.
4. Co-op’s robo goes to Manchester
Co-op’s robot delivery service rolls out to Greater Manchester to bring groceries to residents. Developed by Starship Technologies for the Co-op Group, the battery-powered robots use a combination of sensors, artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning to navigate their way around the streets at walking speed.
Customers can make orders through the Starship food delivery app, schedule their delivery and watch the robot travel in real-time. UK operations manager at Starship Technologies said: “The robots provide ease and convenience for people, while also making a positive contribution to reducing congestion and carbon emissions.”
5. Smart bracelet saves menopausal women
Smart wristband and app Thermaband relieves women suffering from menopausal symptoms. Debbie Dickinson, a former executive for Johnson & Johnson, raised $1.5m (£1.3m) in investment and worked with engineers, scientists, and doctors to develop the portable device to help women manage hot flushes during menopause.
The AI-powered bracelet monitors the wearer’s temperature and delivers a cooling sensation whenever it detects a hot flush. It can also provide heat and tracks blood pressure and heart rate. The tech revolutionising women’s health is now due to go on sale this year.