The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2018-06-06T22:06:57Z Businesses Are Investing in Technology to Improve Customer Experience, but Many Are Still Falling Short of Giving Customers What They Want 2018-06-06T22:06:57Z businesses-are-investing-in-technology-to-improve-customer-experience-but-many-are-still-falling-short-of-giving-customers-what-they-want Nearly two-thirds (60%) of respondents in Australia say more work is needed by companies to improve their online experience Customer experience (CX) ratings vary by vertical with hospitality leading the way globally More than half of all respondents think machine-to-people interactions will improve CX Australian consumers still believe they will have the better customer experience in a physical location than an online store A new Mitel® (Nasdaq:MITL) (TSX:MNW) survey of 5,000 adults from Australia, the United States, UK, France and Germany indicates a measurable disconnect between the advancements organisations think they are making to deliver exceptional customer experience and how customers actually view their commercial interactions. Specifically, less than half of respondents believe the technology needed to deliver the perfect online buying experience is available. This stands in stark contrast to findings of a previous Mitel survey in which 90 percent of IT decision-makers optimistically reported progress in improving customer experience through the use of technology. While a clear sign of the growing pains associated with digital transformation initiatives underway globally, the new survey also uncovers an opportunity for technology to play a key role in defining and keeping pace with changing buyer behaviour and preferences. In fact, over half of those surveyed believe machine-to-people interactions will positively transform the customer experience (51% in Australia). Vertical Visionaries, Leaders and Followers As customer experience becomes increasingly critical for businesses to remain relevant and compete, Mitel’s survey shows differences in customer satisfaction across vertical industries. Growing use of cloud communications and applications, combined with emerging technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence, chatbots, and natural language processing (NLP), are creating new ways for companies to nurture and build customer relationships. Winning companies will be those that are able to differentiate their brands by delivering seamless experiences across physical and digital environments, devices and channels. Currently, some segments are doing better than others. Hospitality leads the charge: Hospitality management knows the first stop on the itinerary for today’s travellers are online review sites. Before booking a trip, consumers want to hear what others have to say. In fact, it’s a near-universal activity. Given the impact reviews can have on average daily room rates, it’s no surprise this industry takes customer satisfaction seriously, receiving top marks among those surveyed. Australians also responded with high satisfaction rates (41%) with regards to their online experience with hospitality providers. Physical retail isn’t dead, but the customer experience is: More than 60 percent of shopping done by respondents still takes place in a physical store, though that number is shifting. When asked about the challenges faced by today’s brick-and-mortar retail outlets, three out of five respondents say the fact retail stores are struggling has more to do with the customer experience they provide, not products. While Australians are currently shopping in physical stores at much higher levels (74%) they agree with their global counterparts that customer service just doesn’t exist anymore. A seamless omnichannel approach is critical for this market, where more than one-third (36%) of Australian respondents note they make purchasing decisions based on the experiences brands provide versus the products and services offered. Chatbots can be used to manage simple tasks, while IoT and team collaboration tools open up new avenues for communications across media, whether it’s voice, email, SMS, web chat, social media or a website. Speed is the game in sports and entertainment: In the fast-paced world of sports and entertainment, immediate and clear communication is a necessity. Forty-nine percent of Australian respondents point to simplicity and speed as the most important factor in a good customer service experience, slightly higher than the global average (45%). Availability vital in healthcare: Healthcare organisations receive the lowest marks from respondents in all countries when it comes to customer service. Australian respondents, in particular, say availability and 24/7 service (40%) is the most important feature they look for from healthcare services, followed by simplicity and speed (36%). Additional insights from the data indicate: Bots, AI and machines can fill the customer service gap: Consumers appear to be increasingly comfortable with machine-to-people interactions when shopping online, with over 78 percent of Australian respondents saying they are satisfied dealing with automated processes. Most do not want to interact with a person while shopping online unless the service is very complicated, or they are having trouble finding the product or service they need. Half of Australian consumers and over 60 percent of U.S. respondents say if they could shop without speaking to a person, it would be a good thing. Even so, physical retailers need to balance the use of technology. Consumers do expect people to efficiently help them when shopping in a physical storefront. Mobile reigns supreme in the United States; Australia favours in-store: Of all respondents, U.S. and Australian consumers shop most frequently during a typical week. There are also notable differences by country regarding how and where consumers shop. U.S. respondents reach for their smartphone and use apps; Britons like shopping online via their tablets; French shoppers most often use their laptops; Germans are more likely to use a desktop computer; and Australians prefer a physical store location (74%). In Australia, brands can’t be complacent about improving their online presence. While more Australians still prefer buying goods and services in physical stores, more than two in five (42%) say they want to shop even more online, and just one in ten Australians (9%) say they don’t like shopping online at all. Seven in ten Australians (71%) say overall, shopping online is more convenient than shopping in a store. To meet this growing demand for online services, and the change taking place in consumer behaviours and expectations, brands need to consider a greater level of consistency across both the online and physical experience for their customers. Mitel’s study is the latest in its Business Insights Survey Series, which builds on previous research from August 2017 where more than 75 percent of IT decision-makers said they planned to tie together devices, emerging technologies, and communications and collaboration capabilities within two years to enable machine-to-people interactions to improve customer experience. This body of work expands on the concept established by Mitel in 2016 of “Giving Machines a Voice” to enable IoT and other machine triggers to launch real-time communications workflows that can improve how companies work and collaborate. Exploring a different angle, this survey examines how consumers view customer experience in shopping for goods and services across market segments, including retail, hospitality, sports and entertainment, health care, financial services and utilities. For more results and a closer look at regional or country-specific data, download the white paper. Quotes “As physical and digital worlds begin to seamlessly intersect, how effectively a company serves its customers across both domains determines tomorrow’s winners and losers,” said Jon Brinton, Senior Vice President of Customer Experience Solutions at Mitel. “By supplementing existing applications and investments with new technologies such as AI, team collaboration and IoT, companies can better communicate and collaborate internally and externally and begin to proactively deliver the level of customer experience buyers expect.” “The data shows no matter where you are in the world, customer experience matters—bottom line,” said survey administrator Regina Corso of Regina Corso Consulting. “In order to truly connect with customers on their own terms, organisations must look for new ways to balance technology investments with personalised customer service. Those that are able to navigate this balance will go on to build strong brand loyalty with their customers, helping them succeed in today’s highly competitive purchasing environment.” Additional Facts Mitel has been recognised as a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications for four consecutive years. Synergy Research Group has confirmed Mitel’s position as the #2 unified communications as a service (UCaaS) vendor worldwide. Mitel hosted cloud solutions are trusted by more than one million global subscribers. Related Materials Download the “Giving Machines a Voice” white paper Download the "Customer Experience for Dummies" e-book. Read the guide on "5 Steps to Increase Revenue Through Customer Experience." Download the "Digital Transformation for Dummies" e-book. About Mitel A global market leader in business communications powering more than two billion business connections, Mitel (Nasdaq:MITL) (TSX:MNW) helps businesses and service providers connect, collaborate and provide innovative services to their customers. Our innovation and communications experts serve more than 70 million business users in more than 100 countries. For more information, go to www.mitel.com/en-au and follow us on Twitter @Mitel_AU. Contact Information PR agency contact Martin Aungle Explore Communications +61 (0)415 917 381 maungle@explorecomms.com.au Media – EMEA & APAC Sandrine Quinton +33 (0)130-964-301 sandrine.quinton@mitel.com Ski Hire Jindabyne 2018-02-25T18:06:43Z ski-hire-jindabyne Wolfys Ski Hire is one of the iconic brands of Jindabyne. ,Wolf'y has been helping get people on the mountain of Thredbo and Perisher for over 25 years. They offer a traditional  hire service of matching skill with skis and snowboard. For back country skiers they have Cross Country and Telemark skis. Winter is not far away and it should be a late but great season. And yes there is a Wolfy call (02) 6456 2897 or see below. Ski hire Jindabyne  ski  and snowboard prices Bridgestone shares the PyeongChang journeys of Brockhoff and Wells 2018-01-17T22:32:40Z bridgestone-shares-the-pyeongchang-journeys-of-brockhoff-and-wells Bridgestone Australia & New Zealand has teamed up with Australian snowboarder Belle Brockhoff and New Zealand skier Beau-James Wells to share the stories of their journeys to the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang and return from respective injuries.      Bridgestone is a Worldwide Olympic Partner, as well as an Official Partner of the Australian and New Zealand teams, and is encouraging all athletes to chase their dream as PyeongChang 2018 looms.  As part of the local activations in the lead up to this year’s Olympic Winter Games, Bridgestone worked with VML Australia to produce two poignant videos from Belle Brockhoff and Beau-James Wells’ perspectives on what it means to chase the Olympic dream. Brockhoff suffered a huge blow to her Snowboard Cross campaign in March last year, injuring the ACL ligament in her right knee, forcing her to withdraw from a major event in Spain and return to Australia for surgery. On her return to competition in December, Brockhoff suffered another setback – reinjuring her knee in an unfortunate fall and putting PyeongChang in doubt once more. She admits the Olympic Winter Games has been a lifelong ambition and even from her hospital bed was determined to represent Australia in South Korea. “The Olympics have been one of my goals for a very long time. A big goal of mine is to medal, and an even bigger goal is to win. I started skiing when I was three years old. And then I picked up a snowboard when I was ten,” Belle Brockhoff said.   “That first day when I picked up a snowboard I knew that I wanted to be the best. At that age you don’t think so much of danger, you just kind of go for it - but you have to be so incredibly present. If you’re not, you’ll really suffer the consequences for it.”   Like Brockhoff, Wells’ lead up to representing New Zealand in Freestyle Skiing at PyeongChang has been a tale of recovery after injuring his ACL ligament in 2016 and forcing him to the sidelines for a year. “I’ve dreamt of holding up an Olympic medal ever since I can remember. When we were kids, watching the Games, Dad said ‘someone has to be the best, so why can’t it be you?’ That really fuelled me and it wasn’t long before I hit my first jump,” Beau-James Wells said. “Being told you can’t do what you love for a whole year, to me that’s heartbreaking. But you can turn that pain into a new hunger and now I’m coming back stronger.” Bridgestone Australia & New Zealand Managing Director, Andrew Moffatt, says the athletes’ determination to chase their dreams despite injury is inspirational. “Every athlete competing in the Olympic Games has their own unique story, but the journeys of Belle Brockhoff and Beau-James Wells highlight the perseverance required to represent your country,” Mr Moffatt said. “Seeing how focussed they both are to achieve greatness is really quite moving, and we’re honoured to be able to share their stories through such evocative clips.” Belle Brockhoff and Beau-James Wells’ videos can be viewed here. Australia’s elite winter athletes unveil 2018 Winter Olympics technical kit 2017-10-20T03:05:08Z australias-elite-winter-athletes-unveil-2018-winter-olympics-technical-kit With just over 100 days to go to PyeongChang, Australia’s Winter Olympic Team are heading into the Games season fired up and - as of today - kitted out in the latest highly technical, environmentally conscious gear. PyeongChang 2018 hopefuls, Matt Graham, Britt Cox, Dani Scott, Jarryd Hughes and Dave Morris joined the Australian Olympic Committee to unveil the uniform, including competition-grade gear and gloves designed based on their feedback and produced by XTM Performance, who have decked out the Winter Olympic Team since 2006. “We’re very excited to have XTM on board once again for the 2018 Olympic Winter Team,” said Chef de Mission, Ian Chesterman. “PyeongChang 2018 will be the fourth Winter Games that XTM has supplied the Team with gloves, après boots, socks, bags and thermals. I know they will once again deliver products that the athletes love and will contribute to their best performances at the Games.” XTM Founder, Pete Forras is well-versed in the athlete’s world, an Australian Olympian himself having competed in downhill and downhill combined in the 1988 Games in Calgary. “It is such an honour to be the only Australian snow brand making gear for such an amazing group of athletes to compete at the Games in. I remember how special it is to get your hands on the uniform for the first time and its awesome to be able to share that with them,” he said. The technical kit provided by XTM incorporates world class fabric innovation – the gloves and base layers are made from 100% Australian Merino which is biodegradable, sustainable, animal friendly and natural. XTM is also the only true Aussie brand to work with Gore-Tex in gloves, a global leader when it comes to moisture control technology which will be so important for our athletes competing in South Korean climates at that time of year. XTM’s operations have also been reviewed for their environmental impact, so the athletes’ uniform is 100% offset with Carbon credits keeping it responsible and of course, technically state of the art at the same time. It wouldn’t be an elite winter athlete’s kit without a one piece – the team will be packing a full Merino onesie to beat the South Korean chill, which was tried and tested by Aerial Skier Dani Scott. Scott said she likes to know that the products are made with the intention to protect the environment they all rely on for their sports. “The team are going to be stoked to be wearing that Merino onesie when they hit the ground in February, and it’s good to know there is the intention of doing the right thing by the planet built into our gear. It’s a simple, but really important thing that we can do so that is great,” said Scott. In addition to consulting with the athletes on the uniform pieces they have put together for the whole team, XTM also works closely with team members to create new products for them. Chumpy Pullin’s got a great new glove, “the ACP” - also favoured by fellow Snowboard Cross team members including Belle Brockhoff - that has a Kevlar backing in the back of the palm for protection in the event of a bad fall. The speed guys and biathlon cross countries will be wearing a brand-new glove at the Games as well. Medal hopefuls, Aerial Skier Dave Morris and Mogul Skier Britt Cox also work closely with Forras and his team. Morris will be rocking XTM’s new Fable glove at the Games, while Cox favours XTM’s white leather Platinum glove as her chosen glove for competitions. “It is really exciting getting the uniform and seeing it all together. I have been with the XTM family for a while and they are just so passionate about skiing and Australian snow sports in general, which I am too obviously! It’s great that they can share this with our team and really understand what we need in competition and conditions like PyeongChang,” Cox said. While Winter sports are celebrated in Australia, it is probably underestimated given how high we achieve on an international stage - Australia punches way by our weight on Olympic medal return basis. “This team has got the lot - with World Championships winners, promising newcomers and some great comeback stories. We had 40 podiums last year so that's 40 times Australian athletes have been on the podium over a range of sports on the world stage at the highest level of competition,” said Forras. Forras says one of the greatest opportunities the winter team have as a Southern Hemisphere nation is being able to train in a home environment in the off-season. Many of the biggest competitions are held in the Northern Hemisphere from December to April. “The guys are able to really focus on that improvement and then go over and do it again in the northern hemisphere in the glaciers as a lead in to their competition time. We live winter to winter, but that keeps us really hungry and able to improve at a faster rate,” Forras said. - ends - For interviews with Pete Forras, additional images or videos of the Winter Olympic athletes and the PC2018 uniform by XTM Performance, please contact Emma Hornsey on 0415 842 801 or emma@xtm.com.au. About XTM Performance XTM, an abbreviation for the term ‘cross the mountain’ or ‘X-The Mountain’, has carved out a niche supplying accessories and skiwear internationally. Returning as Olympic partner for the fourth time in 2018, XTM Performance is a brand that caters for all types of adventurers. Lessons learned from working with the most talented athletes on the planet are showcased throughout the entire XTM range. Working with the world’s most advanced materials and technologies, XTM Performance manufactures more than half a million units each year, which are sold in 24 countries. As one of Australia’s leading outdoor and snow brands, XTM will forever endeavour to work with the most advanced materials and technologies in the world to continually create products of gold medal quality - all from their Torquay beach shack. Pepper joins forces with St Kilda Football Club 2015-11-26T22:17:47Z pepper-joins-forces-with-st-kilda-football-club MEDIA RELEASE  27 November 2015 St Kilda Football Club has spiced up its corporate partnerships by announcing financial services provider Pepper Group Limited (‘Pepper’) as its new principal partner.     As one of Australia’s leading non-bank lenders, with a growing global presence, Pepper offers a range of consumer finance products and services, including home and car loans, and complements St Kilda Football Club’s existing line-up of exciting brand partners. Pepper’s relationship with ‘The Saints’ is in place for the next three years.   Patrick Tuttle, Co-Group CEO of Pepper, said: “As a founding club of the Victorian Football League, St Kilda has a strong heritage in the AFL and Pepper is excited by the opportunity to be associated with such an iconic Australian sporting organisation.    “As a club, The Saints proudly supports ambition, celebrates achievements and encourages all who are connected with it to aspire to its philosophy of ‘How I Want To Be’. These values are mirrored in Pepper’s culture, where we believe that everyone deserves the help and guidance necessary to realise their personal and financial goals.”    St Kilda Football Club CEO, Matt Finnis, welcomed Pepper Group to The Saints: “There is so much positivity surrounding our club and having an international business like Pepper join us and commit to being part of the journey we are taking is fantastic.” Pepper is seeking to boost awareness of its brand in key AFL states nationally and in particular, Victoria. The loyal St Kilda fan base represents the type of customers Pepper typically works with to help them get ahead in life, whatever their circumstances.    As part of the partnership announcement, Pepper will also unveil its new consumer-facing brand ‘Pepper Money’, which will be introduced over the course of 2016.     Commenting on the new brand, Pepper’s Co Group CEO, Mike Culhane said: “Following an extensive, and ongoing, period of acquisition, growth, and an ever-expanding suite of lending products, Pepper is embarking on a comprehensive rebranding exercise to better explain what products we offer to consumers.”   “To be named principal sponsor of St Kilda is a defining moment in Pepper’s story, bringing our brand to a wider audience of sporting fans in Victoria and across Australia, as well as expanding on our existing sporting relationships with the Western Sydney Wanderers and as naming rights sponsor of Pepper Stadium.”   Pepper is the only financial services brand to be associated with St Kilda and shares the principal partnership role with Dare Iced Coffee.    Ends    For more information, please contact DEC PR on behalf of Pepper Group: Joanne McIntosh or Sarah Bullen  02 8014 5036 | pepper@decpr.com.au    About Pepper Group Pepper Group (“Pepper”) is Australia’s largest non-bank residential mortgage lender (as measured by total assets under management), is a leading provider of specialty residential mortgage and consumer financing, and a highly experienced third-party loan servicer and asset manager. Pepper is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX:PEP) Worldwide, the Group currently has approximately A$36.8 billion of loan and lease assets under management (comprising prime and specialist residential mortgages, commercial mortgages, equipment leases, small business loans, consumer loans and car loans).  Pepper Group now comprises approximately 1,400 employees worldwide and has offices in Sydney, Parramatta, London, Dublin, Shannon, Madrid, Singapore and Seoul. Since establishing itself as a specialist residential mortgage lender in the Australian market in March 2001, Pepper has originated more than A$5.7 billion of specialist residential mortgages in Australia. It also commenced originating commercial auto & equipment finance in April 2013. In August 2011 Pepper acquired GE Capital’s Australian and New Zealand mortgage lending businesses, which comprised a portfolio of approximately A$5.0 billion of Australian and New Zealand residential mortgages. This transaction was one of the largest whole loan transactions in Australian history. Pepper’s current wholesale funding partners in Australia include Commonwealth Bank of Australia, National Australia Bank and Westpac Banking Corporation. In addition to lending and servicing its own residential mortgage and consumer finance portfolio, Pepper provides third party primary and special servicing across various types of mortgages, leases and unsecured loan products. Pepper is jointly led by Co-Group Chief Executive Officers, Mike Culhane and Patrick Tuttle. Mike and Patrick are focused on ensuring Pepper continues to leverage its core credit underwriting and loan servicing expertise both in its home market of Australia and other underserved markets in Europe and Asia. Pepper is regulated by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (“ASIC”) in Australia. Pepper Finance Corporation (Ireland) is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) in Ireland. Pepper Savings Bank is regulated in South Korea by the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS). Pepper is ranked by S&P as a “STRONG” Residential Loan Servicer and is included on S&P’s Global Select Servicer List. Australia’s largest electronics manufacturer launches first product on global crowdfunding platform 2015-11-21T01:21:14Z australia-s-largest-electronics-manufacturer-launches-first-product-on-global-crowdfunding-platform E3 Style the country’s largest product developer of consumer electronics has announced they will launch their first product, the MiGear ExtremeX Shot 5 action camera, via crowdfunding platform Indiegogo this week.Founder of the company Vanessa Garrard says the move makes sense on many levels. “We see crowd funding as a fantastic platform for us to reach out directly to early adopters of tech products and obtain valuable feedback during the product development phase.” The Brisbane based company has partnered with crowdfunding specialist agency, The Creative Collective to launch the campaign, who have so far achieved two hugely successful campaigns via crowdfunding raising $200k over a 45 day period for a 21 year old techpreneur from Lithgow, NSW in April this year with the Nextear wireless earphones, and $100k over a 30 day period for a 27 year old from Brisbane, QLD in September this year with the Alice in Wonderland 150 year anniversary book. The first product to be released via crowdfunding platform for E3 Style will be the MiGear ExtremeX Shot 5 4K action camera, which features specifications that exceed other branded action cameras in the market.  The Shot 5 action camera is fully waterproof without the need for a separate case, it also has a vivid 2” LCD Display so you can instantly view your video footage it is also jam packed with loads of other features including GPS and geo tagging, WIFI so you can instantly share your footage on social media and to top it off, it has 4K recording at 30 frames per second. It will eventually retail at $399 but people who back the crowdfunding campaign will gain access to discounted early bird special of $279.   Though to date both E3 Style and MiGear ExtremeX (which is just one of the company’s many tech brands) are relatively unknown, E3 Style actually sells more action cameras in Australia every year than any competitor. Garrard believes this is because the company consistently offer feature rich products that offer better value for consumers. “Our mantra is to bring products to the market at a mainstream price point. Whatever is on trend we’ll bring out something that has great specs, if not better, at a more affordable price point.  Garrard should know about tech consumer trends. 1 in 2 people in Australia now have one of her products (around 13 million products are in the AU/NZ marketplace alone), and E3 Style are the largest private labeled supplier of consumer electronics, the largest supplier of technology focused on youth in Australia and the company’s products dominate the largest amount of retail space in electronics stores around Australia. Vanessa herself is a mother of four children aged 4, 5, 7 and 10 years old.   The Indiegogo campaign will commence on 20 November US time. A limited number of media samples of the product can be made available after the product release. If you are interested in receiving one of these,please complete the form here. See the crowdfunding page here. Also see the company’s website athttp://www.migearextremex.com/ and social channels: ·       www.facebook.com/migearextremeX ·       www.twitter.com/migearextremex ·       www.instagram.com/migearrextremex ·       https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCd7lkZSUfmbNSkWb5C_xuBA     >ENDS< Media interested in arranging an interview or photos should contact Yvette Adams on 0405 022 977 or pr@thecreativecollective.com.au.   BIO ON VANESSA GARRARD Vanessa Garrard co-founded E3 Style in 2006, which is now Australia’s leading supplier of consumer electronics and accessories to the retail market. 1 in 2 Australians owns a product her company has developed.  Amassing a slew of achievements, Vanessa has been ranked in Australia’s Top 30 Female Entrepreneur list every year since 2010, and was recognized for her entrepreneurial achievements in 2011 taking out the QLD Telstra Young Business Women’s Award. She has also topped the BRW Fast Starters and Fast 100 lists, and was named the Australian EY Entrepreneur of the Year for Industry in 2013.  More recently, Vanessa was recognised with an Australian Financial Review / Westpac 100 Women of Influence award, and she is also an Ambassador for StartUp Australia. Vanessa also has the global consumer electronics license for Warner Bros., allowing E3 to produce and sell products featuring Warner Bros. icons such as Scooby Doo, Superman and Batman. 5 tips on using a solar charger for your mobile phone 2015-10-23T02:24:51Z 5-tips-on-using-a-solar-charger-for-your-mobile-phone Having a solar charger for your mobile phone or tablet means you can recharge your gear anywhere the sun shines. Perfect for travel, camping and most of all emergencies. Remember summer power failures, anyone? Imagine a holiday with no flat battery moments but instead the convenience of your camera and mobile phone fully usable anywhere. Solar power for your mobile devices also means you are taking less power from the grid – saving the planet one recharge at a time AND saving money. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your solar charger, whether this is for camping or everyday. 1. To increase the efficiency of your solar charger, make sure the panels directly face the sun at all times. As the sun moves across the sky throughout the day, adjust your solar charger accordingly. Pop it onto the car console or dashboard while driving to catch some rays. Leave it on the window sill at home through the day so you can recharge off the grid at night. 2. If you are charging through a window, windscreen, etc, be aware that the charging times will be increased especially if your windows are tinted. 3. A great way to use a solar charger for your mobile phone or tablet while camping or bushwalking is to WEAR IT! Strap it to your backpack and recharge your portable battery anywhere you go. Then its on hand to charge up your phone, camera, GPS or the kid’s iPod (so you can enjoy the serenity a bit longer). 4. The power of the sun’s rays depend on the season, as during summer the earth faces more directly towards the sun. So charge times can vary depending on the season where you are. The time of day is also an important factor to consider when using your solar charger. You will get the best performance when the sun is at the highest point in the sky, usually at noon. In fact, an hour charging at Noon will give better charge than a few hours later on the same day. 5. Extreme weather can affect your solar charger’s efficiency, so if its baking hot, protect your charger from until its a little cooler, ideally less than 45deg C. Powered Life www.poweredlife.com.au has solar chargers from leading brands including Powertraveller. From the waterproof Powermonkey Expedition or to the family sized pairing of Powergorilla + Solargorilla, from waterproof Powermonkey Extreme 12V to the all-in-one Solarmonkey Adventurer, we have a solar charger to suit your lifestyle and mobile devices. Christmas Gift Ideas for people who love technology 2015-10-23T01:43:49Z christmas-gift-ideas-for-people-who-love-technology Picking the right gift for family and friends who love technology just got easier, with the release of new ideas to help them take their favourite device away camping, to school or even to work. Mophie H2Pro case for iPhone 6/6S and Lifeproof Fre Power Case have it all: military-grade tough, waterproof and dropproof tough case, with inbuilt rechargeable battery pack, so you get 100% extra battery life built into your case wherever you go. Powertraveller Powermonkey Expedition solar charger is a revolution in portable charging technology, bringing together multiple ways in which to naturally, yet efficiently generate power - all housed in strong, aluminium, waterproof casing. The waterproof (IP65 rated) powermonkey expedition houses a 10,500mAh lithium polymer battery which can be charged in three ways; via hand-powered crank, solar or via the international AC mains charger. Does your home or office have multiple devices to recharge every day? A charging station can charge up to 5 devices from one powerpoint. Griffin PowerDock 5 and BlueFlame 4 Device Charging Station can save space, time and sanity. Educational technology toys mean the kids won’t realise they are learning while they have fun. Osmo Game System brings iPad into the physical play, with interactive games for creative thinking and problem solving. LittleBits Electronics, including kits on space and Arduino, teaches them about circuitry, leading them to robotics, coding and much more. Working with iPad is so much easier with an inbuilt keyboard in a protective case. Zagg Slim Book case for iPad Air 2 has backlit keyboard to make working that bit easier, even in low light. Powered Life helps you maximise your mobile technology – whether you are a school with iPad and laptop fleets to manage, or a family that needs to kidproof its iPads, as well as businesses large and small. Protect your devices with the choice of best brand protective tough cases while recharging anywhere with solar and portable power. Reduce admin cost and time of managing multiple devices in your school or business with charge-sync solutions. Find out more at www.poweredlife.com.au or call 1300 POWER 4 (1300 76937 4), email hello@poweredlife.com.au. Live a powered life! Power up your Dad this Father's Day 2015-08-21T03:15:16Z power-up-your-dad-this-father-s-day Dads come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and spend their time doing different types of things. Here are some great gift ideas for YOUR kind of Dad. Sporty Dad If Dad likes to bike or hike, he might like to take his mobile phone with him. MAMILs (middle aged men in lycra) often like to record their hard-earned kms so waterproof phone kit with a mount to keep it safe while he works the pedals is a great gift. Lifeproof has waterproof, drop proof, dust proof cases for mobile phones – so they are also Dad proof – including iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung’s Galaxy S5 and Galaxy S6. iPod users get protected too. Add on an optional mount kit so Dad has his phone on his bike, car, boat - anywhere.   Business Dad Mophie’s range of powered cases for mobile phones is legendary. Yes, you read right: built-in back-up battery in a protective case. Flick a switch and recharge anywhere. Stock available right now for iPhone 5/5S, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus as well as Samsung Galaxy S5. Lifeproof makes Dad even more powerful (get it??) with a waterproof PLUS powered case. Perfect for the endlessly busy Dad, the clumsy Dad; the travelling or tradie Dad. If Dad likes to recharge more than just his phone, check out the Mophie Powerstation XL which can recharge 2 devices at once, from its 12,000mAh rechargeable battery pack. Or a ruggedised powerstation with the Mophie Powerstation Pro, with a 6000mAh power bank that is drop proof and water resistant.   Adventure Dad Does Dad like to get out there in the wilds? Powertraveller portable power gear means Dad can venture far, while keeping in contact with his world, with solar and rechargeable power packs. Powermonkey Explorer 2 is crushproof, waterproof while Powermonkey Solarmonkey Adventurer has endless power for mobile devices. For the hardened explorer, the brand new Powermonkey Expedition power pack includes solar and hand crank recharge options. For the Dad who ventures overseas, the BlueFlame World Charger plus Portable Battery Pack can make simple work of recharging devices, with a single AC adaptor with international pins, plus a detachable portable pack to keep him recharged anywhere. Powered Life www.poweredlife.com.au helps you choose where to work or play. Use your mobile phone, tablet or notebook - anywhere, any time - with top brand portable power and tough cases for mobile devices including Lifeproof, Mophie, Powertraveller and much more. Solar chargers, waterproof mobile phone cases, kid-proof iPad/tablet cases. Who says Skiing in Australia is Expensive! 2015-06-10T15:37:12Z who-says-skiing-in-australia-is-expensive Australian Ski resort are offering great deals. Ski or snowboard Charlottes Pass for $49 per day with free lunch, that's half price. There are three options to choose from. Cant afford that snow holiday, Perisher are offering in peak season ,2 nights package staying at the Station Resort Jindabyne with lift ticket for $199 or $299 for three days. See you on the mountain. Ski Cheap Teamster App Is a Sporty Tinder & Instagram Sandwich 2015-01-29T02:45:37Z teamster-app-is-a-sporty-tinder-amp-instagram-sandwich Melbourne, VIC, Australia (PRWIRE) January 29, 2015 Available today, the app Teamster offers users the ability to find people nearby to play sport with, as well as organise sports activities with friends and Teamster users. With 19 sports currently on offer, Teamster is designed for everyday runners, cyclists, ball or water sportsmen and women, as well as being a huge benefit to travellers. Whether the user is a beginner or an elite athlete, Teamster will find new training buddies and sort out who is coming to play on the weekend without having to ask everyone individually. After logging in through Facebook, users will be asked to select the sports they play and the skill level associated with each sport, from Level 1 (Beginner), to Level 5 (Elite). Teamster will then suggest the best suited people through its precise recommendation engine. The user can begin Tinder style swiping through the users who play the same sport, with a similar skill level, in their area. A swipe to the right will send a team request, while a swipe to the left will skip the user. On the Instagram inspired activity feed users will be able to see and join upcoming nearby activities that their teammates and other users have created for their selected sports, (an activity is a sports session with a set day, time, location, specific sport and level). The activity map reveals the same activities in a map format, with each activity displayed as a sports symbol in the location that the activity will be taking place. When any user joins an activity the creator will receive a notification, while all attendees will be reminded of the activity prior to the start time. To create an activity, the user clicks on the Instagram-like orange button in the centre of the bottom menu bar. The user can then enter the activity details; sport type, day & time, description, duration, location and select who can join the activity, (anyone, teammates and their friends or teammates only). Users also have the option of posting the activity to Facebook. “As an ex racing cyclist and runner, I realised there was room for a platform that would make it easier for sportsmen and women to connect and see what everyone is doing for the week, it’s something that I wish was created earlier” says 22 year old Teamster CEO and Co-Founder, Sam McCallum. The design and functionality of Teamster has a sporty feel to it, with users’ profile pages as an American style college locker, featuring a jersey with the user’s last name and the jersey number as the user’s age. Users are able to upload 5 profile photos and write a small bio which is all shared with other users. User privacy has been taken into consideration at every stage of Teamster’s development; users have the ability to block their profile from being seen and contacted by the opposite gender, while users between the ages of 13 and 17 will only be able to see other users within this age bracket. Teamster is currently available for free on iPhone & iPad, with the Android version coming soon. Please visit http://www.GoTeamster.com for more information on Teamster, including app videos, screenshots, a press kit, all social media accounts and a brief description on the development team behind Teamster. To install Teamster:    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/teamster/id909633954?ls=1&mt=8 Travel gets a jump start 2015-01-20T03:30:17Z travel-gets-a-jump-start Whether you are travelling or just running a busy life with a car full of kids or clients, NOTHING wrecks the day more than a flat car battery. Or if it’s on the water, a boat battery that just won’t kick over, leaving you stranded, or ruining a perfect day’s fishing before it’s even begun. Times like these you wish you had the solution in your pocket. Well, now you can. PowerOn Portable Jump Start Kit is a small-sized lifesaver. It’s a jump start for your car, boat, bike or whatever, capable of jump starting your vehicle’s battery up to 20 times from a full charge. It takes up less than the space tor a set of jumper leads but can get you out of a tight spot in a minute. Of course, sometimes flat battery emergencies can be of the OTHER type, such as a flat mobile phone or iPad battery, leaving you uncontactable, or worse, having to listen to the kids argue in the back seat for the next 2 hours 48 minutes. So the PowerOn Jump start kit is also a power pack, ready to recharge any 5V/1.2A USB chargeable device from its massive 12000mAh battery pack. Plus the built-in safety LED torch, and your travels just became a whole lot easier. It can put out 86 lumens of light and up to 100 meters of illumination, with multiple illumination modes: torch, strobe light, and SOS. An emergency light capable of lasting up to 120 hours on a full charge! >> Find out more about PowerOn Portable Jump Start Kit here Powered Life www.poweredlife.com.au helps travellers enjoy the outdoors and remote adventures while keeping their mobile devices charged and protected. From solar chargers and portable power packs, and drop-proof and waterproof protective cases for devices, to mounts for keeping your device anywhere, our products help you maximise your fun whether you are glamping or hiking mountains with goats. Live a powered life!  6 tips for buying a school-proof iPad case 2015-01-20T03:16:35Z 6-tips-for-buying-a-school-proof-ipad-case More schools are offering bring-your-own-device, or BYOD programs, for children to bring their own iPad to school to use in class teaching. This reduces the impact on the school’s budget, but also makes students and their parents responsible for protecting the iPad to, from and at school. So what should you consider for your school-going iPad? Here are our top 6 tips on what you should focus on. Protective case with genuine drop protection This iPad will be dropped. Face this fact right now. So you need to give it genuine protection from the inevitable – this is not the time for a cheap and cheerful plastic wrapper over your $600 iPad. High quality brands such as Gumdrop, Otterbox, Trident and Lifeproof engineer their cases to handle drops, shocks and more. This can include inbuilt air chambers, high density silicone, ABS plastic internal frames and other forms of clever to kid-proof your device. The dozen dollars or so you will spend on it will be worth it for the extended life of your iPad, and the fact that your little Jonny won’t be the only one without an iPad at school for a week while you get it fixed – again. Screen cover Screens cop a bit from grubby little people. Sand and grit being dragged across the screen can leave lasting damage to the glass and frankly you really need a screen to be clear to get the most out of a tablet. Many good quality cases include an inbuilt plastic screen cover that is both tough but also sensitive so the ever-so-slightly heavier finger pressure required to activate the screen is well worth it for the protection it provides. Of special note is the Otterbox Defender case which has an integrated plastic screen cover but also a detachable screen guard/stand which provides a tough ABS plastic barrier between your child’s iPad and compass set. Alternatively, some come with adhesive screen protectors, such as Kensington BlackBelt and Safegrip models. Adhesive covers can be purchased separately so added to other cases, and replaced when required. Port covers Mashed banana in your charge port, m’am? No thanks! Make sure that your iPad case includes secure port covers to keep the nasties out of vulnerable places. Stand up Having a stand on the iPad case can make a difference to a child’s head and neck position while using the device, and assist to ensure good posture. Cases such as Gumdrop Hideaway, Kensington Blackbelt and Otterbox Defender include stands, while Trident Kraken AMS Media Stand is an optional accessory. Protection in class – storage for lunch breaks etc One of the major worries for schools is how to secure the iPads while they are not in use. Wall cages with charge systems – such as PC Locs or Ergotron - may be the answer, otherwise lockable trolleys to move devices around. There are many options available and the school needs to have a solution so that your iPad doesn’t vanish while the kids are at lunch. Accessorise for success Make sure that your child has the gear they need for using the iPad in class. This may be a child-friendly stylus pen, or volume limited headphones so that they can’t blast their heads off. Powered Life www.poweredlife.com.au helps families and schools maximise iPads and tablets for learning, while minimising the cost. Protective cases and covers for children of all ages including those with special needs. Styluses, headphones, keyboards and other accessories. Charge-sync-storage systems for schools to reduce admin cost. All the best quality brands, all in one place at www.poweredlife.com.au or 1300 POWER 4 LIFE (1300 76937 4 5433) or hello@poweredlife.com.au.  x cross skiing gets extended season 2014-10-14T00:25:17Z x-cross-skiing-get-extended-season With the large front dumping  snow on Mt Kosciusko National park and across Victorian ski resorts  last night. Resorts like Perisher ,Charlotte Pass ,Hotham and Thredbo  will enable  cross country skiers to have a extended season this year. The approximate cover of 5 to 10 cm reported ,there will be enough to tour the resorts with  some areas been a bit sticky. Back country and higher areas should have better snow cover and a snow base. Just when you though mother nature had retired for the www.skicheap.com.au "H. P.T.U." 2014-05-21T08:25:00Z h-p-t-u                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Ray Thyer " H. P.T.U. "        The only thing that the "I'm in again Parties" - you know the ones that go in when the other mob goes out and can't you hear them yell 'I'm in Again!'?          The only thing they create is H.P.T.U.- H  for HARDSHIP P    "   PAIN T    "   TAXES U    "   UNEMPLOYMENT           they have been in an out so many times they must be worn out and past their use-by date.            AUSTRALIA NEEDS A NEW ERA! "N.K.F.L." N   for NO MORE LOSS OF JOBS. K    "   KEEP MANUFACTURING IN AUSTRALIA F     "   FREE DOCTOR VISITS - REVERSE $7 FEES. L     "   LESS TAXES. IT CAN BE SO!  I KNOW HOW TO DO IT - THEY DON'T! KICK THEM OUT - JOIN "AUSTRALIA NEW ERA PARTY" I NEED 1650 MEMBERS NOW TO REGISTER MY PARTY! TIME IS SHORT!  Send me an email with "I wish to join" subject line to ray.thyer@bigpond.com for an enrolment form if you think you will make a SENATOR/ MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT/ STATE PREMIER/  LOCAL MAYOR. Send no money.   LIKE ME ON FACEBOOK.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               (