Ritz Herald 10, Jul 3 mins
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The Ritz Herald
An $800 million increase in electronics and gadgets spending anticipated for 2019 season

Back-to-school spending is expected to reach $27.8 billion, averaging $519 per student in households buying clothing, supplies, computers and electronics for children in grades K to 12, according to Deloitte’s annual “Back-to-School Survey.”

Spending on electronics and gadgets (smartphones, tablets, wearables) are set to rise $800 million, a 29% increase over 2018. Consumers planning to purchase these items (22%) intend to spend an average of $305 on them.

Most back-to-school purchases will continue to occur in stores (56%), consistent with prior years, but online is gaining ground and set to grab 29% of back-to-school spending, up from 23% last year. The increase reflects a shift online among individuals who were previously undecided between online and in-store.

Overall, use of personal computers for back-to-school shopping is down from 49% in 2018 to 42% of respondents in 2019, while 60% are reaching for their smartphones this year, primarily to visit a retailer’s website (54%), obtain price information (51%) and look for discounts/promotions (51%).

“For the first time, people are telling us they’re just as likely to use a smartphone to make purchases as a laptop or desktop, which previously held the lead when it was time to click the ‘buy’ button,” said Rod Sides, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP and U.S. retail, wholesale and distribution leader. “Additionally, we continue to see just over half of purchases occurring in the stores, with undecided shoppers gravitating online. Retailers who understand this will position a range of in-store and digital offerings to meet consumers where they are.”

Price remains the most important criteria for back-to-school shoppers. The top two considerations when deciding where to shop are sales and discounts (69%); and…




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Greener School Buses Highlighted at Texas School Transportation Expo
The Ritz Herald

Over the weekend, the Propane Council of Texas partnered with its national counterpart, the Propane Education & Research Council, and attended the Texas Association of Pupil Transportation (TAPT) Expo & Conference in Dallas and educated school transportation officials from across the Lone Star State about the advantages of cleaner-burning…

Windows To Go Is Being Depreciated: What You Need To Know
The Ritz Herald

Microsoft recently announced that the May 2019 build of Windows 10 is the last one that will support Windows To Go. While this announcement certainly sounds alarming, the change is not quite as significant as it sounds. It does mean that…

TE Connectivity Foundation Continues Global Effort To Increase Access To STEM Education
The Ritz Herald

The TE Connectivity Foundation today announced it will continue its support of three nonprofit organizations that advance its mission of connecting and strengthening global communities through access to technology and engineering for all, with a focus on women and underserved populations, by providing $1.3 million…

Hate Speech on Twitter Predicts Frequency of Real-Life Hate Crimes
The Ritz Herald

According to a first-of-its-kind study, cities with a higher incidence of a certain kind of racist tweets reported more actual hate crimes related to race, ethnicity, and national origin.

A New York University research team analyzed the location and linguistic features of 532 million tweets published between 2011 and 2016….

Memory Bridge Documentary Airs on Amazon PRIME that Reveals New Way to Communicate With People Who Have Dementia
The Ritz Herald

A new documentary “Love Is Listening: Dementia Without Loneliness” was released on Amazon PRIME on June 26. The documentary demonstrates that loneliness need not be the inevitable condition of people with dementia. This is the second film produced by Michael Verde, founder of Memory Bridge, who also produced, “There…

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PHOTO CREDIT: Students learning with tech
The Ritz Herald
Leading educators, edtech partners, and administrators collaborate this week on student success to bring the latest teaching and learning insights back to their schools and colleges

Instructure (NYSE: INST) will bring together 3,000 education leaders and more than 70 partner companies from around the world this week at its annual edtech conference, InstructureCon. From July 9-11, educators and administrators will gather to tackle pressing issues in the changing education market. Attendees will have 140 sessions to choose from with keynotes from thought leaders and world-renowned authors. Attendees will also learn about the latest Canvas Learning Management Platform capabilities and partnerships, and collaborate on ways to best support student success.

“Research shows that students are not prepared for vital transitions in their learning lives – from high school to college and from college to career,” said Mitch Benson, SVP of Product at Instructure. “During InstructureCon, we will share updates to Canvas and our partner ecosystem that highlight the opportunity edtech has to work together to create an educational environment that embraces personalized learning, focuses on transferable skills, prioritizes access, and welcomes the increasing connection between the academic and professional worlds.”

Attendees will learn more about the innovative tools Instructure is building in Canvas to meet the future needs of students and teachers. The new capabilities in the expanded Canvas Learning…

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PHOTO CREDIT: McDermott used its derrick lay vessel, DLV 2000 to perform its first S-lay piggy-back pipelay
The Ritz Herald
Mitigated impact of two cyclones to install India's longest dual 18 inch plus a 4-inch riser and installed pipelines, pipeline end terminations (PLETs) and manifold pile in ultra-deepwater depths of approximately 6,300 feet (1,920 meters)

McDermott International, Inc. (NYSE: MDR) today announced it has completed the first of two offshore campaigns for Reliance Industries Ltd. KG-D6 R-Cluster subsea field development, in the Krishna Godavari Basin, located off the East Coast of India.

The campaign included McDermott’s piggy-back pipelay in S-lay mode (18-inch plus a 4-inch) offshore in India in approximately 4,265 feet (1,300 meters) water depth and the installation of 6-inch lines, PLETs and manifolds to water depths of approximately 6,300 feet (1,920 meters). McDermott used its derrick lay vessel, DLV 2000 to perform its first S-lay piggy-back pipelay. Other vessels were also used to complete subsea installation activities. In addition, McDermott also installed India’s longest dual riser.

“The safe completion of season one activities, in the challenging offshore environments off the East Coast of India and mitigated disruptions from two cyclones, demonstrates McDermott’s expertise in engineering and execution of complex subsea projects in ultra-deepwater depths,” said Ian Prescott, Senior Vice President for Asia Pacific. “We will build on our success to help ensure the second campaign is accomplished safely with the highest quality.”

McDermott’s first offshore campaign completion comes at a time when McDermott continues to expand its operations in India, with over 1,500 personnel across…

Teachers Rapidly Adopt Clever Library, A New Way To Discover Education Software
The Ritz Herald

Clever, the most widely used single sign-on platform for K-12 education, announced today that more than 250,000 educators have created 9 million student accounts using Clever Library since June 2018. Clever Library is a catalog of high-quality digital resources that teachers can deploy to their…

Nonfiction Wins San Francisco Design Week Award
The Ritz Herald

Nonfiction was honored at the San Francisco Design Week Awards on June 20th at Pier 27 for their design of the Halo Sport 2 neuro-priming headphones. They received the award in the BioTech category for their ground-breaking design and commitment to thought leadership in meeting the needs of a…

Omron Healthcare Expands Alexa Skill for Its Connected Blood Pressure Monitors
The Ritz Herald

In pursuit of its Going for Zero™ mission, Omron Healthcare, Inc., the global leader in personal heart health and wellness technology, today announced expanded capabilities for its connected blood pressure monitor users through the Omron Health skill for Alexa. Last year, Omron Healthcare became the first brand to create…

A CEO’s Guide To Disaster Recovery Planning
The Ritz Herald

The word “disaster” evokes a catastrophic fire, a massive data breach or another large-scale event that seems unlikely to happen to your business. While these certainly could be classified as disasters, there are many other — much smaller — events that can be disastrous for your business, such as…

Should Cybersecurity Be Top Priority For CFOs
The Ritz Herald

In many organizations, CFOs are helping set milestones for the future and this often includes investments in new and emerging technology. Cybersecurity may not be in the landscape for CFOs, but this ongoing threat is one that simply cannot be ignored by business leaders. The ongoing cost of operations…

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The Ritz Herald
PHOTO CREDIT: OPPO Reno landed on MARS (OPPO Arabia)

OPPO, the leading global smartphone brand, is inspiring consumers to go further with the launch of its newest campaign, ‘Lead the Species’. Capturing the exploration and pioneering spirit of OPPO, and in particular the groundbreaking new OPPO Reno series, the campaign aims to encourage smartphone users to seize the opportunities offered by breakthrough technology to lead the way in exploring the possibilities of the future.

Inspired by the space exploration programs of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and drawing influence from the photographic capabilities of the OPPO Reno series, the Lead the Species campaign follows a group of intrepid explorers as they lead the human race in a new dawn of discoveries on Mars.

The campaign video charts the group’s arrival on the Red Planet, and explores the possibilities for life on Mars as they begin to lay the foundations for future generations to live beyond Earth. It draws parallels between OPPO’s groundbreaking exploration of technology and the pioneering spirit of the Middle East as nations set their sights on space travel and future colonies.

“Lead the Species is about bringing the natural explorative nature of human beings to the fore, using the new OPPO Reno smartphones as the ideal conduit for exploring beyond our boundaries,” said Andy Shi, President, OPPO MEA. “Exploration and leadership are two core values that OPPO strongly adheres to, which we feel are expressed through this exciting new short film. Our aim is to inspire millennials to further explore themselves and to embrace their inner leader – much like we…


How Heat Waves Kill: CO2 Foundation Warns of the Next ‘Mega’
In Europe, another severe heat wave is in progress. In
New Survey Reveals 70% of Americans Support Nationwide Solar Panel Mandate on New Homes
The Ritz Herald

As we approach the longest day of the year, a new survey reveals American adults are eager to harness the sun’s energy, with 70 percent saying they would support a nationwide mandate requiring solar panels to be installed on all newly built homes. The survey, conducted by CITE Research…

AssetDoppler Launches New Hi-Tech Severe Weather Alert System
The Ritz Herald

Special Tech Systems, LLC is announcing the launch of their new severe weather alert system, AssetDoppler, a new, innovative system that identifies weather damage to commercial and can also be applied for residential properties. The system tracks damaging weather events including hail, tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding,…

LG SIGNATURE’S Combination Of Superior Design And Technology Set To Conquer New Markets
The Ritz Herald

Successfully expanding its presence in the global premium home appliance market, LG SIGNATURE is making its much anticipated debut in Japan and the Nordic countries. To celebrate the brand’s arrival, exclusive launch events were held complete with talks from local experts sharing their personal and professional perspectives on LG…

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PHOTO CREDIT: Shutterstock
The Ritz Herald
Better, cheaper technology is speeding up the journey to tipping points by as much as two years. Most markets have revised policies towards more ambitious clean energy targets. Renewable and behind-the-meter generation gaining momentum

Renewable energy technology advances, innovation in storage and digitization and increased distributed energy generation are accelerating the pace of the global energy transition, according to the latest EY research in collaboration with IDC, a leading global analyst house.

A year ago, EY teams and IDC mapped the major drivers to determine when three tipping points would forever change the way utilities do business and set the industry on a countdown to reinvention. The latest analysis, covering Europe, the US, Oceania, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, China, India and Latin America, indicates that these drivers are progressing faster than even the most ambitious estimates, bringing forward the tipping points by as much as two years.

Benoit Laclau, EY Global Energy Leader, says:

“A revolution in the power sector is driving rapid change in renewable energy supported by digital technologies, the falling cost of battery storage, and empowered consumers. These are quickly ushering in a new energy system, transforming our world into one where cleanly generated electricity will power almost every aspect of our lives”

The research identifies four key forces creating a combination of factors that compress the timeline to a new energy world.

  • Force…



How Heat Waves Kill: CO2 Foundation Warns of the Next ‘Mega’

/ Jul 5
In Europe, another severe heat wave is in progress. In the United States, high summer temperatures kill more people than hurricanes, tornados, floods and lightning combined. But how? William H. Calvin,
Youth against AIDS announces global partnership with LifeStyles Healthcare
The Ritz Herald

Youth against AIDS, an international non-profit organization based in Germany that promotes sexual health worldwide and provides sexual education in schools and youth facilities all over the world, announced today the agreement of a global partnership with LifeStyles Healthcare, the world’s leading sexual wellness company.

“In 2018, around 37 million…

NYC Gets Easier to Navigate: Digital Firm Reflexions Launches OMNY to Replace Iconic MetroCard
The Ritz Herald

Reflexions, a digital strategy and development firm is pleased to announce the launch of OMNY, a new tap-and-go contactless fare payment system designed for New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). The system will replace New York City’s iconic MetroCard used by the system’s 8 million daily riders.

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The Intellexa Intelligence Alliance is proud to announce on its Expansion, new Members and the Enhancement of Its End-To-End Offering
The Ritz Herald

Intellexa is upgrading its Arsenal with a new Member joining the Alliance, which now also include Members from Paris France and Limassol Cyprus. on the 28th of May this year, Intellexa – The Intelligence Alliance, announced that Senpai Technologies the developer…