By the London technology team
New MPs to feast on Apples
Computerworld revealed that £1 million will be spent equipping new MPs with the latest iPad and a laptop in a hardware refresh aimed at changing the way parliamentarians do business. House of Commons authorities say that the new gear will save money and make MPs more efficient, but the move wasn’t universally welcomed.
Shadow Cabinet Office Minister Chi Onwurah MP warned against locking MPs into the Apple platform, and given the high price of Apple devices (plus the fruity manufacturer’s tax affairs), she said the House of Commons should opt for a more open and cheaper platform.
Councils concerned over broadband rollout
The Financial Times carried a story about a County Councils Network survey that showed local authority concern over Government’s superfast broadband roll-out targets. Currently, the target is 95% of UK premises to have superfast by 2017 and the first target (90% by 2015) has already slipped by a year.
The survey showed broad support for broadband roll out, despite some specific concerns over cost and competitiveness. With the looming election, broadband will be a big issue in many of the 650 local campaigns.
Fintech swimming nicely in London
Reuters wrote a feature saying that London secured $623 million investment in fintech last year, representing 42% of all European investment. London’s status as a financial hub, plus the more recent success of ‘Silicon Roundabout’ means that London is well placed to make the most of this emerging industry, however London still has a long way to go compared to the US.
Globally, Europe only secured 12% of total fintech investment, but the article says this will increase over time as high growth companies mature and wealthier staff leave to set up their own businesses.