Startup to Help Contractors With Meds Costs; Galaxy S23 Hot Sales; iPhone SE Lives On After All; Pixel Watch Gets Fall Detection

One of the big down sides of being an independent contractor is less access to healthcare benefits and even when you can get them, significantly higher prices. reports that Otis out of Seattle has launched, aimed at helping contractors who don’t have medical insurance to save money at the pharmacy. Otis is helmed by CEO Steve Moses, former senior product manager at Amazon Pharmacy. Otis members can sign up for free, and get their card via text message. Then, they can show the card to a pharmacist and get discounts of up to 90% off the retail price of the prescription. Otis generates revenue by charging pharmacies one set fee for every medication. That sets it apart from traditional players such as pharmacy benefit managers, Moses said. Otis is hoping to capitalize on the growing market of freelance “gig workers” and other contractors who pay for medications out-of-pocket.

The year 2022 was a rough one for smartphones, with sales overall down 11% worldwide. Samsung was worse than average, down 16% from 2021. Now, the Galaxy S23 seems to be changing that. According to, the S23 is hot…up 10% during the preorder period in Asia. The only European country with sales numbers so far is France, where S23 preorders were about double the sales last year. In Latin America, Galaxy S23 preorders were 50% higher than last year…partially driven by the flagship phones being available in Brazil on launch day for the first time ever. Samsung says that worldwide, 60% of customers have been going for the S23 Ultra. If these sales figures are an indicator, US sales should also show a significant uptick for Samsung when they come out. In other words, the S23 is a big hit that Samsung needed. 

It had been rumored that Apple was going to kill off the cheaper and smaller iPhone SE, but apparently it will live on for a 4th generation. says the phone won’t be out until 2024, and won’t be small…noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says it will have a 6.1 inch OLED screen. The present 4.7 inch SE has an LCD display. Kuo goes on to say it will be similar to the standard iPhone 14, but will be a bit less feature rich. It is likely the entry level iPhone will lose its thick bezels, home button, and Touch ID, with it getting Face ID like the rest of the iPhone line. The present SE sells starting at $429, and the 2024 model is expected to continue to be Apple’s cheapest phone by far. 

Google has started rolling out fall detection to the Pixel Watch. reports that the feature was announced when the watch dropped 4 months ago, but Google says the feature “has been extensively tested” so the Pixel Watch can distinguish between an actual fall and “vigorous physical activity.”  Apple Watch has had fall detection for years, and Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5 has it…and had it going back to the Galaxy Watch 3. One reason Google delayed the feature…lately, Apple has gotten hit with a fair amount of criticism over false alarms from the feature in the Apple Watch. Google says they can differentiate between a ‘small stumble’ so an exercise routine, for example, won’t set off an alert. The Google Watch starts at $400, which is $50 more than the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now. 


More Twitter Layoffs; Meta Backs Anti-Sextortion Platform; Xiaomi Shows AR Glasses; Motorola Bluetooth Add-On Enables Satellite Connection

After shutting down Twitter’s internal Slack chat app last week..allegedly for the bill not being paid, Twitter laid off over 50 more folks over the weekend. Included in the cut were Elon Musk loyalist Esther Crawford, who oversaw the company’s Twitter Blue verification subscription. According to, most of the remaining product team also got the chop. A post on Blind, an anonymous platform for verified workers, 50% were in human relations, 60% in sales and marketing, 35% in engineering, 40% in finance and 80% in project management. Employees have received one month’s severance, the poster said. There has been no comment from Twitter or Musk. Musk had promised last fall no more cuts, but on the other hand, he’s been promising actual self-driving next year on Tesla cars for several years, and that hasn’t happened. 

Meta is looking to a new tool called Take it Down to stop the spread of sextortion images on Facebook and Instagram. CNN reports that Take it Down is operated and run by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children allows minors to anonymously add a hash…or digital fingerprint…to intimate photos or videos from their own device, without having to upload to a new platform. If the pic of video gets posted to Facebook or Instagram, including Messenger and direct messages, it can be matched with the digital fingerprint, get reviewed and removed…hopefully in a timely manner! The tool is available at The youngster downloads the app to their phone, and can begin using it. There is also StopNCII, which was rolled out in 2021, and is intended to remove revenge porn affecting adults. 

Mobile World Congress opened in Barcelona today, and Xiaomi showed their new wireless AR glasses. notes that these are not into production as yet, but a really cool concept device. The Wireless AR Glass Discovery Edition look more like oversized sunglasses than the goggles most AR and mixed reality headsets have right now…and like the renderings of Apple’s upcoming headset. They run on the same chip as the Quest Pro, and use a magnesium-titanium alloy and carbon fiber to lighten weight. The glasses use electrochromic lenses to allow users to seamlessly go from reality to the virtual world with a single click. They are still heavy at 4.4 ounces, so not something one could wear all day as yet, but Xiaomi says the idea is to let users have extended wear time without a tether to a smartphone. As they are still  not close to production yet, no word on pricing or how long they would last on a charge. 

Motorola announced a cool gadget at Mobile World Congress, too. According to, the Motorola Defy Satellite Link is a credit card sized device that carries a modem that supports Bullitt Satellite Connect, and eSIM card, and an independent GPS. The device connects to any relatively recent iOS or Android phone and allows you to send an emergency text message from areas without cellular…like you can do on the newest iPhones and Samsung phones. So if you like to go off hiking in the woods or to secluded beaches where there’s no connection, but like the safety of satellite emergency connection, this is for you. It’s $99 for the device, or $149 for the Defy Satellite Link plus a year’s connection plan with emergency SOS and up to 30 satellite messages a month. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now!

Apple Will Have High & Low End Mixed Reality Headsets by 2025; Samsung To Add Satellite Connectivity to Bolster 5G; Netflix Cuts Prices in 30 Countries; Valve Bans 40,000 Cheaters

Apple is widely expected to drop their first mixed reality headset late this year…probably showing it at World Wide Developers Conference in June, and coming out around September with the new iPhones. Now, Apple-watching analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says we can expect both a high end and lower priced AR/VR headsets as soon as 2025. The top end one will still be priced at least $3000, but the lower end model will still be a chunk of change…it’s expected to sell for around $1500. The lower priced model will use some less premium components like lower resolution lenses. reports that Apple expects to sell enough of the lower end model to make it feasible at that price through mass production savings. 

Samsung is working on using satellite connectivity in its phones to allow use in areas without cellular coverage. According to, Samsung has secured “standardized 5G non-terrestrial networks (NTN) modem technology for direct communication between smartphones and satellites” that it plans to integrate with its Exynos modems. This will not only allow for emergency messages like Apple’s Emergency SOS feature, but Samsung says its Exynos modems will be capable of two-way text messaging as well as high-definition image and video sharing. As with the Apple system and all satellite communications, you will still need a clear line of sight to the sky. Qualcomm just last month announced that it was bringing satellite connectivity to Android phones, While T-Mobile has teamed up with Starlink for connectivity in remote areas. 

As we all know, Netflix hit us with a price increase last year. Now, the streamer is cutting prices in over 30 countries…but not for you, USA…not for you! says Netflix has dropped prices by as much as half in part of the Middle East, including Yemen, Jordan, Libya, and Iran, as well as parts of Africa, Balkan Europe, Latin America, and parts of Asia. Meanwhile, the extra account sharing fee is still rolling out in a number of countries, including Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, and Spain. That extra fee is still expected to hit the US within a couple months. 

Valve has banned over 40,000 accounts that were playing the game Dota 2, after finding them using 3rd party software to cheat the game. reports that Valve has patched the exploit that allowed the cheat. Before doing that, they set up what they termed a ‘honey pot trap’ to nail the cheaters. They dropped in some invisible code that wasn’t used in the game, but could be accessed by the 3rd party software looking for ways to cheat. Valve says this gives them high confidence that all of the accounts banned deserved it. Trying to stop cheats is an ongoing cat and mouse in most game systems, but kicking off 40,000 gamers at once is a pretty large catch. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now.

YouTube Multi-Language Subtitle Feature; Apple Watch Glucose Advances; Mercedes Teams With Google; Man Crushes AI System at GO

YouTube has announced it’s rolling out support for multi-language audio tracks which will allow creators to add dubbing to their new and existing videos, helping them to reach an international audience. reports that the technology to support multi-language audio tracks was built in-house at YouTube, but creators will need to partner directly with third-party dubbing providers to create their audio tracks. Once uploaded, viewers will be able to pick a different audio track from the same menu where they currently are able to adjust other settings like subtitles or audio quality. It’s up to the creator to choose which other language they want to support. This will enable creators to expand audiences internationally on a scale never possible before. Right now, it’s only available on YouTube’s long form content, but they are testing on Shorts right now.

Another step in the long process to bring non-invasive blood glucose monitoring to the Apple Watch…a process that started under Steve Jobs! According to, Apple’s tech has reached the ‘proof of concept’ stage. This doesn’t mean that next fall’s Apple Watch will have the feature…first, they have to devise a way to shrink it down to fit into the Watch. The prototype is the size of an iPhone right now. Getting glucose monitoring without finger sticks will revolutionize life for diabetics, and will astronomically increase sales of the Apple Watch when Apple is able to miniaturize the process to fit. Cupertino is far enough along that they have started holding early discussions with the government about getting approval for the tech.

Mercedes-Benz and Google have made a long time deal to bring Google Maps and YouTube into Mercedes vehicles. says the licensing agreement will allow Mercedes to use the Google features within the Mercedes designed MB.OS operating system, as opposed to having Android Auto or the like control the Google features. Expect to see the Google features in cars by 2024. Meanwhile. starting today, Mercedes owners will be able to get Place Details provided by Google in their present cars via an over the air software update. 

So…ChatGPT and other AI are taking over the world, coming for your job, and all that. Well, not quite. Artificial Intelligence including ChatGPT isn’t really intelligent. A human player has beaten…badly…a top ranked AI system at the board game Go…a surprise reversal of a victory by a computer in 2016. reports that the player is an American named Kellin Pelrine, who is one level below the top amateur ranking. Pelrine picked up on a previously unknown flaw that had been detected by another computer, and exploited it to crush the AI player in 14 out of 15 games….and did it without direct computer support. The weakness is shared by all widely used AI systems, including ChatGPT. According to the report, any competent human player would have spotted the gambit right away, but the computer wasn’t able to. It looks like we puny humans have a few more years before our computer and robot overlords take over!

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now!

More Cuts at Meta; Bing Chat AI Now on Edge Mobile App; News App from Instagram Founders Now Open to All; Recycled Car Batteries Back Up Grid in California

After axing 11,000 people last fall and intimating that no more would be cut, Meta appears to be getting set for another round of layoffs. This on the heels of the announcement over the weekend that Facebook and Instagram would now have a paid verification tier That will pull in $11.99 for subscribers on the web. $14.99 if you buy using the iOS app. reports that in addition to cuts, Meta “plans to push some leaders into lower-level roles without direct reports, flattening the layers of management between Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and the company’s interns, according to a person familiar with the matter…” The cuts are expected to number in the thousands, and will be rolling layoffs…not all occurring at once, but over the next few months.

Bing powered by ChatGPT just came out this month, and already Microsoft is expanding the AI further. According to, you can now preview the AI feature via Microsoft Edge Mobile on either iOS or Android. Apparently, Microsoft envisions the new Bing and Edge apps acting as a “copilot for the web.” In the announcement about the mobile powered Edge with ChatGPT, Microsoft noted that 64% of searches occur on mobile phones. Also available in preview…the ability to add Bing to a Skype chat- so you can query it during a live session and get immediate answers right within the call. Hopefully, it won’t end up like the conversation between Captain Over and Roger in the movie ‘Airplane!’

A new news app called Artifact, built by the co-founders of Instagram, has dropped its waitlist, and is now live in the Apple App Store in most English speaking countries, and also is available on Android. says you will no longer need to input your phone number to use Artifact unless you create and account and move to a different device. An interesting new feature has been added, too. If you are so inclined, you can upload a list of your contacts, and see if an article has gained traction with any of your friends. Note that you won’t be able to see which friends specifically, or how many of them have read the article. Eventually, they plan to add article sharing and comment feature. It will be interesting to see if Artifact takes off…after all, the creators had some rather good success with Instagram…so much that Facebook had to buy them out!

What happens to electric vehicle battery packs when they no longer hold enough charge to meet manufacturer specs? Well, they are recycled…not into a landfill, either. reports that a company called B2U Storage Solutions has began operating a 25 megawatt-hour battery facility in California. The idea is to have the batteries push out extra power when the grid is strained, picking up the slack. Although these batteries don’t meet the car makers’ specs now, they still hold 65-85% of their original capacity. In their new life as grid-level storage, the batteries don’t have the numerous charge and discharge cycles, so they should last even longer than they did in their original life inside vehicles. B2U Storage Solutions is working with car makers to recycle parts of the packs when they finally get to the end of their second life, too.

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now. 

The Supremes vs Section 230; Toyota Changes Management to Move into BEVs; iPhone Grip on Gen Z a Challenge for Android; Metaverse ‘Not’ Real Estate

The biggest story in and possibly affecting tech happened this morning. The US Supreme Court heard arguments about Section 230. That’s the part of Title 47 of the US Code that has protected big internet platforms (in the case just argued, Google) from liability when an algorithm serves up a video or post and then a user that sees it then harms another person or persons. reports that a key point is the allegedly ‘neutral’ algorithm…that serves up stuff based on your search or wanderings on the net. Should the Court decide to eliminate protection for platforms or seriously reduce it, we will have a fundamentally changed internet…with some of it quit possibly being unusable. 

Justice Sotomayor noted that the court is “uncomfortable” with a line that says “merely recommending something without adornment” could constitute defamation. Justice Kavanaugh remarked to one of the attorneys for the party bringing the case: ‘I don’t know how many employment decisions are made in the country every day, but I know that hundreds of millions, billions responses of inquiries on the internet are made every day. … under your view, every one of those would be the possibility of a lawsuit.’ This decision…likely not due out until June, will be one to watch closely. 

As has happened at a couple other car makers, Toyota has made a change at the top as they ramp up to build more Battery Electric Vehicles by 2030. The Grandson of the Founder, Akio Toyoda, has been kicked upstairs to Chairman, while former Lexus Boss Sato takes the reins as CEO. notes that while Toyota has been a leader in hybrids, they have been slow to embrace fully electric cars. Sato, who is an engineer, said that perhaps Toyota has been too deep into motorsports and hasn’t paid enough attention to regular people. They are looking to build EVs in Georgetown, Kentucky, where they already have a factory. Toyota is also setting up a battery factory in Liberty, North Carolina. The company is shooting for a million Lexus BEVs by 2030 and 3.5 million electric Toyotas.

Android has a Generation Z problem…and it’s Apple. According to, people born after 1996, the Gen Z folks, far prefer iPhones over Androids. In fact, Gen Z accounts for 34% of iPhone owners in the US, while that generation only makes up 10% of US Samsung users. In older generations, there is a pretty even split between iPhones and Androids. the Gen Z users are also buying more Apple Watches, AirPods, and Macs than the older generations. (Full disclosure-as is visible from the video, I am a Boomer…and except for AirPods…which don’t stay in my ears well…I am pretty well all-Apple and have been since before Gen Z first appeared.) Research from Financial Times also picked up that Gen Z users spend more time online than any other age group…up to 6 hours a day on their smartphones! You can be sure that there are teams at Samsung, Google, and other Android phone makers that are burning the midnight oil trying to figure out how to crack Apple’s hold on Gen Z.

Crypto was supposed to be the next big thing in finance and investment…until it crashed. Although it’s still around in a big enough way, the volatility and ephemeral nature of crypto has put a lot of people off from trading and investing in it. Now, we have another next big thing….the Metaverse housing market. Yep, the New York Times reports that you can buy your dream house in the Metaverse, and the market is expected to grow by $5.37 billion by 2026. One contractor bought a $10,000 parcel in the Sandbox, an online world and is ‘building an 11,000 square foot mansion there. All the transactions are in crypto, of course, and built on blockchain. As with crypto, NFTs, and the rest…buyer beware. You aren’t going to be able to record a legal deed to your virtual property, and values fluctuate constantly. If you’re a third generation contractor with family money to burn…hey, go have fun!

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now!

Folding iPhone-Touch Sense Anywhere; Tesla Opening 7500 Charging Stations to Other Cars; Alaska Air-Electronic Bag Tags; Twitter Jams Musk Tweets on You

Who knows when or if Apple will release a folding iPhone, but with Samsung and others offering them for the last couple years, they are definitely thinking about it. In fact, and new patent granted to Cupertino is for touch sensitive control areas, including solid state buttons on any surface of the current iPhone and a folding one. The touch sensitive areas would include the side and edge of the devices. In the patent description, the phones have curved sides where the touch sensors will live, but there won’t be any touch sensitive areas on the top or the bottom. Of course, the vast number of phone users put the expensive little devils in cases to protect them…so touch sensitive sides may not be terribly handy. As with all patents (and Apple files tons of them), this may not ever make production…nor may a folding phone…but with Samsung having more success with those, an eventual iFoldPhone (ok…I made that up…pay me a royalty if you use it, Apple) seems more likely.

The Biden administration has unveiled new initiatives revolving around installation of 500,000 EV chargers in the US by 2030. The funds from the bill passed last year total some $7.5 billion. According to, as part of the initiative, Tesla has committed to open up some 7,500 of its Superchargers to non-Tesla vehicles by the end of 2024. Tesla has been piloting open access in Europe since 2021. Tesla will get funds to equip the charging stations with the so-called Combined Charging System and offer smartphone-friendly payments to non-Tesla owners. GM, Ford, and ChargePoint are also combining to add 40,000 fast charging stations. At present, there are 130,000 public charging stations spread across the US highway system. 

We may be nearing the end of the road for those long, sticky tags airlines tag your luggage with. says that Alaska Air is making electronic bag tags available to elite plan members, and will roll the things out more broadly the first half of this year. How it works…you leave the electronic tag on your bag all the time. When you get near the kiosk or the desk for the airline, it uses Near Field Communication to update an E-Ink display (like on a Kindle) on the tag with your information. The info stays on the screen until it’s updated for the next flight. Right now, Alaska hasn’t said what the tab will be for the electronic tags, but in Europe the one-time fee is generally $60-$70. The tags also contain an RFID transmitter for an airline to track and route bags, but many airports still don’t support that feature yet. 

Apparently Elon Musk had a hissy fit when President Biden got more engagement over the Big Game weekend than Elon. reports that engineers were tasked with fixing the problem, so to speak. Now, whether or not you have Musk blocked or hidden, you will see his Tweets on Twitter. Never followed Elon? You get his Tweets too! Will this make his little fee-fees less hurt? Who knows? Meanwhile, Twitter has also had a number of accounts leave Twitter Blue rather than pay $8 a month…including Tesla! Here’s the weird part. A lot of these accounts have noticed that their Blue checkmark doesn’t go away. Apparently, Twitter doesn’t want anyone to know they are losing Twitter Blue subscribers. Researcher Travis Brown has determined that in the last week, 26, 319 users have unsubscribed or were removed. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now!

Amazon-More Brick & Mortar; TikTok Working On Paywalled Video Option; AI Flew Air Force Training Jet 17 Hours; Seattle Police-Adhesive GPS Trackers on Cars Avoids High Speed Chases

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy wants to ‘go big’ on brick and mortar grocery stores. reports that in spite of the company closing dozens of book stores and other physical establishments, Amazon intends to vastly increase the number of grocery stores they have. They are also looking at putting in physical clothing stores. All would eventually feature the ‘Just Walk Out’ tech, where sensors and cameras keep track of your items and charge you as you leave, eliminating check out lines…and checkers, for that matter. Besides the Whole Foods chain Amazon bought in 2017, the company presently has about 40 Amazon Fresh grocery stores. 

TikTok is not sitting still. They are now working on new features to boost usage and also to attract older audiences in the US. According to, one new feature is a paywall, which would allow creators to charge a buck…or maybe more…to watch their videos. Exclusive content for paying fans was pretty well pioneered by OnlyFans, but has also been used by Instagram to try to lure creators to use that platform. TikTok is also revising its creator fund…already in use in France and Brazil, and looking to roll that out in the US next month. The fund is a billion dollar pool of money that pays creators for popular videos. They may boost the eligibility requirement for the fund, rewarding only creators with 100,000 followers and videos longer than 10 minutes. 

While there is some hand-wringing about self-driving vehicles, way above our heads AI is flying along pretty well, apparently, Of course, traffic is more limited at 40,000 feet! An artificial intelligence ‘agent’ recently flew a Lockheed Martin Vista X-62A training aircraft for over 17 hours! says that plane uses software to emulate performance characteristics of other aircraft. This time, they used software to sit in as the human pilot! It is the first time AI has been used to fly a tactical aircraft. The system was cooked up by Lockheed’s famous Skunk Works in conjunction with Calspan.

Seattle area police are using a novel way to catch suspects on the run without high speed chases. reports that they are using a high powered air compressor to fire a GPS tracker at the fleeing vehicle. The tracker is coated with an industrial strength glue that sticks to the car…and presto! No need to fly through streets at warp speed after the bad guys. You can just set a road block ahead or track them until they stop. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now. 

EV’s Will Match Gas Car Prices Sooner; Apple-Patent for Camera in Watch; Ford- Big US Battery Factory; Amazon Kuiper Satellites Approved by FCC

Sticker prices for electric vehicles are dropping faster than expected, and we may reach a tipping point soon. That’s according to a New York Times article. We’ve reported here about Tesla’s big cuts, and prices have also softened at Ford and General Motors. The big, legacy car makers, as well as Volkswagen, Nissan, and Hyundai are ramping up production, which allows for economy of scale. The result? Cheaper EVs. The battery GM Equinox crossover due out this fall will be in the sweet spot for sales…around $30,000. That’s still $3400 more than the cheapest gas model, but right in the zone for mass buyers. The Chevy Bolt is also priced in the low $30,000 range. Waiting lists for EVs are also shortening. Ford already cut prices on its Mustang Mach-E, and expects to be able to cut more as battery costs come down with more mass production. Right now, EV prices have dropped across the board by an average of 17% since July 2022.

An unusual patent for an in-watch camera has been granted to Apple. According to, the cam would be built into the bottom of the Watch. Yeah, like me, you are saying ‘WHAT?’ Here’s the deal…you would remove the Watch from the wristband that holds the watch, point the bottom of the Watch at whatever you wanted to snap a pic of…using the screen as a viewfinder…then snap the Watch back into the band. As with a lot of patents, this one may never see the light of day. Apple also got a patent for a camera built into the watch crown in 2019, and that has yet to materialize. Any watch cam would be for occasional use…it will always be easier to snap a pic with your phone. 

Ford is planning a $3.5 billion battery plant in Michigan. Automotive News notes that the factory will be in partnership with China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology, a maker of lithium-iron batteries for EVs. The Mustang Mach-E already runs on their battery tech. According to Automotive News, Michigan is kicking in $1 billion in incentives. The plant will employ about 2500. In order to comply with the ‘made in America’ rules to get federal vehicle tax credits, Ford may own the plant outright, while CATL would operate the facility and keep their proprietary tech for building the batteries. Ford already has plant partnerships with South Korea’s SK Innovation for battery plants in Tennessee and Kentucky. 

SpaceX, the Elon Musk company that has a fleet of satellites, has fought tooth and nail, but the FCC has approved Amazon’s Project Kuiper to allow the online giant to launch its own network of 3236 satellites. reports that the FCC originally approved the deal in 2020, but has been winding through SpaceX’s various objections…mainly around their concerns about debris and collision risks with other satellites. Amazon has proposed an extensive debris mitigation plan. The satellite system is aimed at bringing high-speed broadband to customers around the world. SpaceX has approval for some 7500 satellites…more than double the system that Amazon is planning to put up.

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Techinfied’ for now. 

Switch Becomes 3rd Best Selling Console Ever; More on Microsoft AI Powered Bing; Google Adds ‘SafeSearch’ Feature; Tesla Sales Push California EV Market Share to New High

In a new report to investors, Nintendo crowed about the Switch game console. The handheld gaming device not only sold 8.2 million units in the last quarter of 2022, it also slipped into the slot as third best-selling game console in history. According to, there are now a tad more than 122 million Nintendo Switches in users’ hands. the number two console is the Nintendo DS handheld at 154 million, and the top dog, but only by a hair, is the Sony PlayStation 2 at 155 million. 

In the last report, we noted that Microsoft was making more of their partnership with ChatGPT when it comes to the Bing search engine. reports that Redmond will actually be using a next-generation Open AI so-called large language model that is more powerful than ChatGPT and is specifically designed for search. Microsoft calls it their ‘Prometheus Model,’ and it  lets Bing improve relevancy, annotate answers, give more recent results, understand geolocation, and improve safety. New features in Edge include the ability to open a sidebar that uses AI to draft text, such as a LinkedIn post, within the specified parameters of the users, including the tone of voice to be used. The search and browser battle is hitting a new level, with both Bing and Google search engines employing next generation artificial intelligence. So what will YOU ask our AI overlords?

Google has added a feature they call ’SafeSearch’ mode to protect you from things you can never unsee. says that even having the toggle on, it will automatically blur inappropriate imagery in search results without even turning SafeSearch fully on. With the mode on, inappropriate images will be removed entirely. This will be particularly useful on computers that may be used by younger users or when you want to show search results in a video meeting and don’t want something popping up that would be embarrassing or worse. The feature is on by default for users between ages 13 and 18. Of course, it can be switched off, so clever kids will figure out a way around it quickly, but at least it’s a good move to try to limit inappropriate content from appearing on their screens. 

California put out its 2022 vehicle data info, and confirmed that market leader Tesla’s sales pushed the EV market share to 17% in the Golden State. reports that overall vehicle registrations were down 7.9% in California for the year. The electric vehicle sales were up 50% year over year to hit that 17% market share level. The Tesla Model Y was the best seller with more than 87,000 units, followed by the Model 3 at 79,000 cars. Toyota continues to be the overall best selling brand in California according to the California New Car Dealers Association. 

I’m Clark Reid, and you’re ‘Technified’ for now.