GTT to replace copper landlines with newer technology

first_imgLocal telecommunications giant, GTT, is looking to replace its traditional copper landline services with a newer technology being offered with its Blaze Internet Package.This new technology, according to Chief Executive Officer Justin Nedd, is as a result of the US$30 million fibre optic cables that the company has invested in over the years.During a media conference on Tuesday, Nedd told reporters that the landline service from the Blaze package is of way better quality than that of the copper lines.Chief Executive Officer of GTT Justin Nedd along with other company officials at Tuesday’s press conference“If as a company we don’t look to constantly improve, we will probably be dead and out of business. The fibre is better and there is no doubt about it. We’re not the first company in the work to do this… If we stayed with copper, yes we will probably make money but then it will not be good enough,” he asserted.The CEO reminded of the days when dial-up internet and copper lines were exciting but then DSL internet came on stream and improved connectivity. To this end, he noted that the fibre optic cable sees further improvements in these services.“So it’s just a progression of improving… and we will continue to invest smartly to give our customers the service they want. After all, we’ve been here for 28 years and we’ve gone from no internet to internet provided by satellite to sub-sea cables which we have multiplied probably a thousand times over from 2010 to now so it always about growth and progressing,” Nedd contended.However, this announcement by the telecommunications boss comes on the heels of an order imposed by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for GTT to issue 350 landlines per quarter every year – something which Nedd said the company has “handsomely beaten”.Nevertheless, the CEO pointed out that more customers are actually giving up their copper landline services.“Every time you roll out a Blaze connection, there is a voice connection. So over the last year, we rolled out more than 20,000 voice services (under the Blaze package)… Ultimately, we will provide a service that the customer wants and when you listen to the voice service on Blaze, it’s certainly a much better quality than copper,” he stressed.According to Nedd, the fibre optic network not only allows for improvements on existing services but also opens the doors for a vast variety of new services such as cable television. In fact, he disclosed that this year, they are working with several partners to roll out this new service.Already, he noted, there is a new TV box system that offers 100 cable channels including local and popular sports channels. This package, according to the GTT boss, is currently being offered by Gizmos and Gadgets at $2500 per month.“Again, this is possible with our high-speed fibre optic network… So you will see more of these third-party services being built more on our Blaze network. You’ll see more of those in the coming years,” the CEO posited.But even as the telecommunications giant is looking to expand its fibre optic network, it continues to be financially burdened with high costs incurred from vandalism. Nedd disclosed that from the last vandalising of its cables, a whopping US$10,000 was spent on labour alone to repair the damages. Against this backdrop, the CEO is calling for stronger penalties against perpetrators, while noting that legal actions are being undertaken against companies whose large vehicles have damaged its cables.Recapping on 2018, Nedd told media operatives that the year was a challenging but productive one. He noted that in addition to the Blaze service, which continues to grow daily, the company’s mobile money service (MMG) is also proving to be efficient.Going forward this year, however, he noted that in addition to improving and expanding GTT’s services, the company will also be focusing on the wellbeing of its employees.last_img read more

5 things to know about new Giants second baseman Scooter Gennett

first_imgThe first thing you want to know about new Giants second baseman Scooter Gennett: He has a quick first step.He was acquired by the Giants from the Reds at the trade deadline on Wednesday. By Thursday morning, he had changed his Twitter profile to read: “I Love God, my Family and my Team the San Francisco Giants.” Remember, Scooter was in Cincinnati when the trade was announced. He had to throw some socks and shirts in a carry-on and bug out to Philadelphia where the Giants are playing the …last_img

Medical aid: minimum benefits to stay

first_imgThe scheme must pay for all prescribed minimum benefit conditions in full and from its risk pool, not from a clients’ savings account. “We are delighted with this ruling,” registrar of medical schemes and CEO of the Council for Medical Schemes, Monwabisi Gantsho, said after Monday’s ruling. Prescribed minimum benefits – the minimum level of diagnosis, treatment and care that a medical scheme is obliged by law to cover – will remain in place in South Africa following a Pretoria High Court ruling. Regulation eight states that medical schemes must pay for the diagnosis, treatment and care of all prescribed minimum benefits conditions in full, or at the price charged by the health care provider. BHF represented a number of medical schemes and administrators and was later joined by the SA Municipal Workers’ Union national medical scheme. The law which prescribed minimum benefits would stand, the council – the first of 13 respondents in the matter – said in a statement. “Prescribed minimum benefits are a cornerstone of the medical schemes act and they were included in legislation for a good reason: to protect beneficiaries against unforeseen ill health that may prove financially catastrophic for them,” Gantsho said. Prescribed minimum benefits are the minimum level of diagnosis, treatment and care that a medical scheme is obliged by law to cover. “As the regulator tasked with looking after the best interests of medical scheme beneficiaries, we are happy that our courts have confirmed the need for such protection in law.” These benefits include 270 serious health conditions such as tuberculosis and cancer, any emergency condition, and 25 chronic diseases, including epilepsy, asthma and hypertension. The ruling came after the Board of Healthcare Funders of SA (BHF) challenged regulation eight of the Medical Schemes Act 131 of 1998 and asked the court to pronounce on it. 8 November 2011 Sapalast_img read more

2018 FFA State Land and Soil Judging Contest winners announced

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Student teams from Wynford High School and the Centerville Environmental Management program were first place winners in the 66th annual Future Farmers of America (FFA) State Land and Soil Judging Contest held October 13th at Dawes Arboretum in Licking County. The event is sponsored by the Ohio Department of Agriculture Division of Soil and Water Conservation, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Delaware Soil and Water Conservation District and Haviland Plastic Products.Wynford’s victory came in the agricultural land judging portion of the competition, where soils are evaluated for their limitations, soil health, fertility and overall potential for agricultural production. The Centerville win came in the urban soil judging category, which challenges students to evaluate soil limitations for urban applications such as buildings, septic systems, roads and landscaping.Teams from Centerburg and Monroeville placed second and third, respectively, in the agricultural contest. Northmor and Buckeye Central took second and third place, respectively, in the urban contest.Clay Montgomery of Gallipolis was the top-scoring student in the Agricultural Land and Soil Judging Contest. Morgan Wenger of Upper Sandusky and Connor Miller of Wynford placed second and third as individuals in the agricultural contest.Wilson Chandler of Centerville received first place in the Urban Land Judging Contest. Aliva Niese of Buckeye Central and Jadelyn Evans of East Knox placed second and third as individuals in the urban contest.This year’s state-level competition hosted 96 teams representing 68 high schools, with a combined 360 students competing. Nearly 400 schools and close to 2,000 students participated in the district contests to determine which schools would advance to the state contest. The Wynford High School and Centerville Environmental Management teams are now eligible to compete in the National Land and Soil Judging contest in Oklahoma next May.last_img read more

‘Game of Thrones’ Thrives on Social Media. Its Author, Not So Much

first_imgThe Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… Related Posts markhachman A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit In the years before cable television and DVRs, a limited number of broadcast TV channels forced Americans to choose from a small selection of programs at any one time, creating a built-in audience. As cable channels proliferated, American audiences splintered. And while studio execs can test-screen both movies and TV shows, Twitter provides provides genuine fan input that the executives said they take to heart.“Sometimes we’ll watch an episode and have the Twitter feed going, and it’s just like being in a theater, in a way,” Weiss said. “It sort of brings the communal nature of the experience back after it disappeared for so long.”Martin’s Own Song Of Ice…At age 64, Martin has prompted concerns that he, like fellow epic fantasy writer Robert Jordan, won’t live to see his series conclude. The fifth book, A Dance with Dragons, was published in 2011. HBO’s third season covers the first half of A Storm of Swords, the third book in the series.“It’s coming,” Martin said of the sixth book, The Winds of Winter. “It’s not going to be done next week. It’s going to be another giant, 1,500 page book. But I’m making progress. I don’t feel comfortable predicting when these things are going to be done, because every time I do I turn out to be wrong and then everybody gets upset.”center_img For all of his anachronistic writing style, however, Martin showed a distinct aptitude for understanding his fans’ mindset, especially regarding piracy.… And FireMartin said:We have to contend with our show being the most pirated show in the world, with most of it coming from Australia. They delay it six months there, so people won’t wait before they download it. I think we’re moving toward a thing where there will be no more delays, to make a show in America where the American director, studio, or producers [won’t] sell it to foreign markets, and broadcasters puts it on six months later or whenever they feel like putting it on. That’s gone now.Martin added that he was proud to work with HBO, which commits to an entire season of a new show, in contrast to the fickle whims of network executives. Had The Wire debuted on NBC, he said, it would have been off the air in three episodes. (And that’s being charitable.)His comments prompted a question to Benioff and Weiss — did they expect to air adaptations of Martin’s entire series on HBO? “God, I hope so,” Benioff responded. When the two went to HBO to pitch the show, it was a rare thing to have creators know exactly where the show was going to begin, move through, and end. (Martin has revealed to the two how he expects Thrones to wrap up.)“I think it would be something that we would be proud of for our whole lives,” Benioff said. “You don’t get that many chances for something that special. We’re hoping we can make it.” Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Tags:#HBO#social media HBO’s hit show Game of Thrones thrives on social media. But you can’t say the same of George R.R. Martin, its original author.A George R.R. Martin Twitter account, for instance, has almost 50,000 followers — but no updates at all. (FYI, it’s not a Twitter-verified account. If it’s a fake, it’s a fairly convincing one, in a contrarian sort of way.) Martin’s Web site could most charitably be described as having a distinctly late 1990s look, and his “Not a Blog” — which the author does update fairly regularly — is hosted on… LiveJournal.At the San Francisco premiere of Thrones’ third season Wednesday night, Martin admitted to writing his novels on a PC that still runs MS-DOS, using WordStar 4.0. “I would still prefer to tie parchments to the legs of ravens,” the author joked.Twitter Is ComingThings couldn’t be more different at the show itself. At the premiere event, series creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss said that Twitter allows them to receive real-time feedback of what works and what doesn’t. Martin added that he believed worldwide hits like Thrones helping to break down licensing barriers around the world.“One of the things that’s really fun about Twitter in particular is that there’s a fan site Winter Is Coming, and they do this sort of real time, as the show airs, what people are saying on Twitter,” Benioff said. “And for us, we don’t get to watch the shows with an audience. For us, it’s a rare thing where we’re there with a group of people. Mainly it’s people watching TV in their homes. So it’s not a communal experience.“The one thing that’s fun about the Twitter feed is that the reactions in real time the shocking moment, whether it’s Ned’s death, the way Twitter lights up,” Benioff added. “So it’s fascinating, just fascinating to see. There’s the world map of Twitter, where people can see what’s trending and it spikes in Turkey. And to know that our show is popular in Turkey, that’s fantastic.”last_img read more

Voice Will Penetrate CRM in the Coming Years

first_imgIn the past few years, voice has become a core part of the consumer journey. It’s a utility that a growing number of people have come to count on throughout the course of their days. Voice-enabled assistants like Alexa (Amazon), Cortana (Microsoft) and Siri (Apple) perform tasks as varied as adding dates to calendars, turning on lights, setting reminders, playing music, and performing online searches.To be sure, voice is transforming the way we experience the internet.As a result, organizations have begun connecting their voice-communications systems to their customer-relationship strategies. They’ve realized that when it comes to resolving an issue or building a relationship, there’s nothing like the power of voice to help drive digital customer engagement.Advances in voice that will shape CX.In 2018, voice-enabled device sales reached 1 billion, meaning voice technology is already shaping consumer experiences, regardless of whether the consumers themselves realize it. For example, artificial intelligence-powered voice technology is fast becoming indispensable, with 71% of smart speaker owners using them daily. Nearly half of users perform product research using voice, with 43% using them for creating shopping lists.In time, this technology will become even smarter, as chatbots and virtual assistants become a more familiar part of the customer experience — even to the point of being able to understand the tone and cadence of one’s voice.With the rise of voice marketing, improved audio marketing will allow businesses to communicate with their audiences without having to actually visualize anything. These voice ads are highly contextual, creating “micro-moments” in which consumers can, say, order pizza for the big game or find a last-minute wedding shower gift.How voice impacts consumer interactionToday, in 2019, research shows that more than 40% of smart-speaker owners use them to search for products, further proving that voice technology is no longer a niche product. How does this affect a brand’s marketing? Well, the basics of ad copy have always been the same: Keep the message simple, direct, and short.Why? We can’t count on consumers — who want information fast — to read reams and reams of copy.The rise of voice will only reinforce this, making consumers even more reluctant to read long articles, how-to guides, or reviews. A brand that doesn’t provide consumers with the succinct information they want (via voice and audio) will quickly fall behind its competitors that do.Your content marketing strategy should guide you in deciding how to leverage voice response and how deeply to invest in it. To find out, ask yourself:Who is your target audience? Is it composed of cutting-edge early adopters? Smart-home enthusiasts? What else about them may make them likelier to engage with your brand using voice versus other platforms?Do you know how to ensure your content experience is valuable and relevant to these demographics?Do you know what results to expect?How will you determine how well you have succeeded?So is your brand voice-friendly? Below is a handful of ways to approach voice so that your brand is ready for the future:1. Have an active SEO voice strategy. Your website needs to hone its SEO efforts in the context of how people actually speak when they seek out information. People search differently when they pose their questions vocally.Voice queries are usually slightly longer than text searches and posed in the form of full questions, such as “where can I buy an umbrella nearby?” As such, it’s wise to incorporate some longer and more relevant keyword phrases.Because consumers are taken to the first result rather than to a results page, you should aim to be the top hit for each of your search terms, rather than just on the top page. This is starkly different from the traditional SEO strategy, in which you aim to be on the first page. With voice, you aren’t being heard if you aren’t number one.2. Consider your content. With the rise of voice comes the rise of audio, so it’s important that brands package up content for audio purposes — whether it’s website copy, newsletters, or anything else — and make it an integral part of your content management strategy.Create a Google action or Alexa skill, which allow voice assistants to react to user queries. For example, Nestlé created a skill called GoodNes that lets consumers, instead of reading a recipe, get cooking instructions provided to them via audio in addition to a visual guide.3. Focus on customer experience. Because Alexa and Google Assistant can differentiate between voices, they can provide insights about each user, ultimately giving you the chance to provide them with more personalized messages and content. Capital One, for example, has included a feature that allows consumers to pay their balances and track their spending using Alexa.The future of online commerce is here, and it has a voice. Brands that listen and work to incorporate audio elements into their marketing efforts will position themselves well for whatever developments come next. What say you? Nayani Vivekaandamorthy has a vibrant marketing mind and has built a successful career by focusing on technology, healthcare, and finance — all while building meaningful relationships and having fun. With This One Question, You’ll Never Need an Ic… Trends Driving the Loyalty Marketing Industry Related Posts Tags:#AI#CRM#customer experience#voice#voice marketing The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos AI is Not the Holy Grail of Sales, at Least Not… Nayani VivekaandmorthyDirector of Business Development at RAPPlast_img read more

Odisha’s wildlife sanctuaries ravaged by Fani

first_imgCyclone Fani: Anger boils over in hungry Puri  “As per eye estimate, the cyclone damaged nearly 55 lakh trees, mostly casuarinas,” said Harsabardhan Udgatta, Divisional Forest Officer of Puri (wildlife) division. “As many as 20% of the trees were uprooted, while the rest were found snapped and broken. The devastation has left around 400 spotted deer homeless,” he said.Apart from deer, the sanctuary, spread over an area of 87 sq km, was home to wild boar, jackals, striped hyenas, wolves and mongooses. While the DFO asserted that no carcasses of spotted deer had been sighted, it was hard to imagine that the animals had actually escaped the cyclone’s fury.Nandankanan closedIn Bhubaneswar, the cyclone had uprooted decades-old trees inside the Nandankanan Zoological Park. Several animal enclosures too have been affected forcing authorities to shut down the zoo for an indefinite period. The Chandaka Wildlife Sanctuary, which is close by, has also been impacted with thousands of trees uprooted. Authorities are attempting to assess the extent of damage.As a result, hundreds of displaced monkeys have now entered residential colonies in the periphery of Bhubaneswar. Residents have reported cases of the simians iattacking people after loss of habitat and food sources. Severe Cyclone Fani rendered not only several thousand people homeless as it tore along India’s east coast last week, but also dealt a body blow to wildlife and forest resources in the region.The scenic stretch along the tree-lined Marine Drive that bisects the Balukhand Wildlife Sanctuary adjacent to the Bay of Bengal between Puri and Konark, is now a wasteland with hardly any tree left untouched, wildlife officials said.Also Readlast_img read more