Friday Five: Taking the heat out of air con

3 min readJun 23, 2023

Zone’s Mark Sylvester handpicks and shares the five best news stories on digital trends, experiences and technologies…

1. Taking the heat out of air con

With a world grilled by climate change, keeping things cool is crucial. From preserving food to saving lives by stopping people from overheating, air con is king.

However, with A/C units selling like hotcakes, that can mean surges in electricity and leaks of greenhouse gases. That’s why a collection of clever start-ups are turning to ground-breaking tech to tackle the global-warming cycle. From crystals to magnets, the future of air con could be green.

2. Putting AI into road safety

A new vision for driver well-being and a safer experience on the road is being crafted by some intelligent in-car AI. Swedish AI firm SmartEye is unveiling its innovative Driver Monitoring System that uses camera-based technology to monitor vital signs from drivers that are imperceptible to the human eye.

It can warn of impending issues, improve response times in crashes, and provide crucial data for first responders.

3. The challenge of change for retail execs

Let’s face it, the pace of change in the post-pandemic world is head-spinning at times. So, it’s no surprise that 60% of retail execs are feeling overwhelmed.

The statistic was revealed in a study by professional services experts Genpact and analyst organisation HR Research, with many execs believing their companies are failing to keep pace with change. HFS have produced a playbook to help matters. Spoiler alert, digital modernisation matters!

4. Going beyond CX for the common good

It’s nearly 30 years since the term Customer Experience (CX) was coined, and since then, it’s found its way into every nook and cranny of business thinking. However, in a challenging time of competing desires, tech innovation and climate change, we may need to go beyond CX.

What we may need now is a more holistic and ecological viewpoint. The customer may not always be right after all, and their needs may have to take second place to well-being and the wider world.

5. How crime has moved online

Put away the crowbars; the modern criminal’s best friend is his keyboard, with around 21 million online scams a year to prove it. The figure comes from the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, which has taken down 54,000 text message rackets and 235,000 malicious websites since April 2020.

Missed delivery messages and bank notifications lead the cyber-scam charge, and even though 21 million is a big figure, it may be the tip of the iceberg. The non-fraudulent message is report everything suspicious, people.




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