Colors: Purple Color

In an effort to provide more opportunities for Caribbean nationals pursuing higher education and careers in the tourism industry, the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) Scholarship Foundation has enhanced and expanded its programme.

With the support of partners in the private sector, the foundation is this year introducing scholarships of up to $5000 in public relations and communications; tourism education or human resources development; hotel, resort, or villa development, design and/or planning; and aviation or air transport technologies. In addition, the Arley Sobers Memorial Scholarship for those seeking to enhance their skills in tourism research or statistics is being doubled from US$2500 to $5000, while a master’s degree scholarship of no less than US$5,000 is being offered for studies in tourism-related disciplines, including language, agriculture, fisheries, horticulture, event management, interior design, medical tourism, architecture, sports, culture and heritage, environmental protection and preservation.

The foundation is also offering a US$5000 scholarship to Caribbean nationals interested in pursuing a first degree in tourism management or marketing, as well as study grants of US$2500 to those seeking to improve their skills in any tourism-related field of study that will enhance the development of a sustainable tourism industry and boost service excellence in the region.

“By expanding the programme to include financial support for study in this wide range of tourism-related subjects, the CTO Scholarship Foundation seeks to meet its objective of ensuring that the brightest and the best are attracted to careers in the tourism sector or in areas that impact tourism, thereby helping to build a Caribbean tourism industry that is globally competitive and sustainable,” says Jacqueline Johnson, the foundation’s chair. “The foundation is profoundly thankful to our partners who have come on board to make these industry specific scholarships possible, and we look forward to welcoming other partners in the future.”

The private sector partners financing various scholarships include Zelman Style Interiors which is funding the hotel, resort, or villa rental scholarship, and Delta Air Lines which funds the aviation and air transport technologies scholarship.

The full list of scholarships and grants, along with criteria for qualification, can be found at: https://bit.ly/2JhVfO3. Applications are currently being accepted and the deadline for submitting entries is Friday, 19 April 2019 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time. All applications must be submitted online at: https://bit.ly/2VeNQUX. Applications will not be accepted via mail, email or fax. The foundation selects individuals who demonstrate high levels of achievement and leadership both within and outside the classroom and who express a strong interest in making a positive contribution to Caribbean tourism. 

Individuals who wish to make a contribution to the CTO Foundation can do so via its GoFundMe page athttps://www.gofundme.com/cto-scholarship-foundation

The CTO Foundation is a 501 (C)(3) entity established in 1997 with the aim of training and developing future leaders for the Caribbean tourism industry by funding studies in tourism and tourism-related subjects, hospitality and language. Since its inception, the foundation has raised over US$1 million in scholarship funds and has provided over 280 grants and scholarships.

Following the launch of Aptumo, an innovative new SaaS billing software solution, outsourced utilities customer engagement specialist, Echo Managed Services, has secured its first international contract with Coliban Water in Victoria, Australia.

Forming part of a wider transformation project across the water company’s customer and stakeholder managements systems, the contract will see Coliban Water replacing its existing billing platform with Aptumo – an innovative, cloud-based, utility customer billing solution.

Built on the Salesforce platform and designed to evolve with ease, the new system will help Coliban Water to maintain positive relationships with its customers through improving and personalising the billing experience. 

Coliban Water is one of the larger regional urban water corporations in Victoria, Australia, covering approximately 20% of the region. 

Amanda Finnis, CIO of Coliban Water, commented: “We needed an information management system that is easy to use, provides accurate data, has rich reporting capabilities and allows our customers to engage with us how and when they want. We also wanted to generate efficiencies throughout the business to allow us headspace for innovation. Aptumo was the ideal solution. We were impressed by Echo’s specialist utility knowledge, as well as the scope to adapt the platform to our needs both now and in the future.”

Nigel Baker, managing director of Echo Managed Services, said: “Billing is an extremely important part of the customer journey, so it’s great to see that forward-thinking suppliers like Coliban Water are future-proofing their systems with dynamic software like Aptumo. Having been at the heart of the highly-regulated UK utilities sector for over 20 years, we have a deep understanding of what clients and their customers need – and we’re looking forward to the project ahead.”

New research of 1,153 UK adults carried out by gadgets and technology e-tailer, LaptopsDirect.co.uk, found that British couples keep nine gadgets in the bedroom on average – but 72% said they feel this is actually improving their relationship.

The top ten gadgets kept in the bedroom were found to be; Televisions, smartphones, tablets, e-readers, smartwatches, games consoles, Amazon Echo/Google Home speakers, laptops, wearable fitness trackers and baby monitors.

A large number (68%) said they are more likely to go to bed earlier to spend quality time together as a couple - such as settling in to watch Netflix or enjoy a Podcast in bed.

The devices most commonly used by couples in bed was unsurprisingly televisions, with 73% claiming they enjoy watching together whilst relaxing before going to sleep.

More than half (59%) of Brits say that reading an e-book in bed relaxes them, while more than 1 in 3 (39%) couples enjoy the quality time they feel they get from watching TV and films on devices while in bed together. Finally, it was revealed that 16% of those surveyed said that they enjoy quality time together whilst playing games consoles from the comfort of their duvet.

Mark Kelly, marketing manager at LaptopsDirect.co.uk said “It’s great to see how couples are using gadgets to their advantage to enhance their relationships in 2019. In a world where personal relationships are constantly strained, if watching their favourite show together on a tablet means a couple is more likely to snuggle up and enjoy relaxation time in the bedroom together that can only be a good thing.”

Laptops Direct is the UK’s largest online laptop specialist, selling a wide range of new and refurbished laptops from leading brands, as well as a wide range of other lifestyle gadgets.

 

 

DVD players, camcorders and house phones will all be obsolete technology in the next 20 years, according to a new poll by Ebuyer.

The survey, conducted by the UK’s largest independent tech retailer, looked into the technological advances that the public think will have the biggest impact on our lives over the next 20 years, and which household tech is likely to disappear from our homes.

House phones were found to be the piece of household tech that was most likely to become obsolete over the next 20 years, chosen by over half (55%) of respondents. With the rise in popularity of streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, it is unsurprising that 47% of Brits think DVD players will cease to exist over the next two decades.

The technology that Brits think is most likely to become redundant or obsolete over the next 20 years is:

House phones (55%)

DVD players (47%)

Camcorders (43%)

Blackberrys (39%)

Portable music players (29%)

Samsung is currently winning the sales war in the smartphone market, holding 20.9% of the market share for 2018’s Q2, versus 12.1% for Apple, which may explain why one in seven (13%) of adults think iPhones are going to be redundant, compared to one in ten (11%) who chose Samsung phones. Blackberry, which first launched in 1999, was the smartphone that was voted the most likely to become obsolete, chosen by over one in three (39%).

When asked which technological innovations will have the biggest impact on our lives over the next two decades, Artificial Intelligence, intelligence demonstrated by machines, in contrast to the natural intelligence displayed by humans, was the top choice, chosen by an overwhelming 55%. Self driving cars (36%) and Virtual Reality (the computer-generated simulation of a three-dimensional image that can be interacted within a seemingly real or physical way by a person using special electronic equipment), made up the top three.

Surprisingly, a quarter (26%) of adults thought both wearable tech and voice assistants, such as Siri and Alexa, will no longer exist by 2038. One in five (20%) predicted that VR will not be a thing of the future, and 14% couldn’t imagine self-driving cars ever becoming mainstream on our roads.

Lee Weymouth, commercial director at Ebuyer said: “Technology is one of the fastest moving and innovative industries globally, with companies investing millions in creating the latest technological advances and products. It was really interesting to see how the public predict the industry is going to look over the next twenty years, and which household tech they think will soon be out of fashion.

As the UK care home sectors continue to struggle with a combination of an ageing population, coupled with a lack of funding to get new projects off the ground, Elder is celebrating unprecedented growth by using unique technology to make care in the home a suitable alternative.

While financial pressures are forcing traditional care homes to increase size, Elder is focused on delivering person-centred care.

The platform uses its continuously evolving matching algorithm to act as an introductory agency, matching professional and vetted live-in carers with families across the UK. This same technology allows them to provide a carer within as little as 24 hours, unprecedented in the sector. These carers are now operating in over 300 towns and cities nationwide, from south-west England to the Isle of Skye.

As the population continues to age, demand for care will increase and the types of care needed will change. The Office for National Statistics predicts a 36% growth in persons aged 85+ between 2015 and 2025, from 1.5 million to 2 million. This is expected to lead to a substantial increase in demand for care home services. However, Elder’s platform is changing that.

After only three years, Elder is already the country’s leading specialist for live-in care, and only two months into 2019 it’s already created over five care homes. After showing growth of over 800% between 2017 to 2018, the company was awarded the accolade of ‘the third fastest growing company in the UK’ (according to revenue) by TECH5 at the beginning of 2018.

CEO Pete Dowds, said: "The growth we've seen to date has given us the momentum to propel the company forward through 2019. We'll add an additional 30 care homes worth of high quality, dedicated care capacity to a system that is actually in decline. Families and local authorities are finally seeing better quality elderly care becoming accessible and affordable."

And there are benefits for the NHS too; since live-in care leads to better recovery and fewer geriatric hospital readmissions. Additionally, due to the short turnaround time of arranging care, the platform can relieve around 60% of delayed transfer of care instances.”

 

The UK’s biggest video games event will welcome Curve’s bumper selection of indie hits including Velocity 2X and Human: Fall Flat multiplayer

 

Gamer Network, the global leader in games media and events has announced that the award-winning British video games publisher Curve Digital will be bringing their unique selection of standout indie titles to EGX 2018. Attendees will be among the first in the UK to sample Velocity 2X on Nintendo Switch, and the chaotic new 8-player multiplayer mode in the best-selling Human: Fall Flat, as well as other hits from the Curve catalogue.

Velocity 2X is the sequel to the hugely popular genre-busting arcade shooter game Velocity. Coming soon to Nintendo Switch, the game brilliantly mixes frenetic platforming with blistering arcade shooting to create a truly unique arcade experience.

Human: Fall Flat, the physics-based puzzle-platformer with over 4.5 million copies sold, will showcase it’s all-new online multiplayer mode to the public for the first time at EGX, allowing visitors to master the art of wobbly parkour with up to seven friends!

Joining them on the Curve Booth will be For The King, a challenging blend of Strategy, JRPG Combat, and roguelike elements and skiing-themed construction game Carried Away! The booth will also feature Manual Samuel - the original dexterity adventure game; strategic World War 2 bombing sim Bomber Crew; air combat roguelike Rogue Aces and open-world, narrative-driven RPG Smoke and Sacrifice playable on Nintendo Switch.

EGX, powered by Virgin Media, is the UK’s biggest games event and takes place at the NEC in Birmingham between 20th-23rd September.