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Swiss Watches Hope For A better Year

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It’s been a tough few years for the world of watches, even with more luxury brands embracing technology. But as fans flock this week to Baselworld, the Swiss watch industry’s annual showcase, leaders are predicting an uplift in sales.

Last year, sales of Swiss watches fell nearly 10% to about $19.7 billion, François Thiébaud, told attendees, in a prepared statement, that this has been driven by “uncertainty on political, security- related and financial levels, a downturn in tourism in Europe, and a persistently strong franc.”

But sales in China have been strengthening in the last six months. Luxury powerhouse LVMH, says sales in its watches and jewellery division grew by 5%, with TAG Heuer gaining share, in part because of its connected watch. And Richemont, the Swiss parent of brands like Cartier and Piaget, also reported a 5% gain in sales. Swatch’s CEO recently told Bloomberg he predicts sales increases of between 7% and 10% in the year ahead.

UK schools trial use of police-style bodycams

Bodycams-in-UK-schools
With the use of police bodycams on the rise, it seems the technology may soon make its way into the school system.

Last month two UK schools trialled the use of police-style bodycams for teachers in an effort to resolve problems in the classroom. The teachers of two UK secondary schools have decided to trial the technology as they are said to be “fed up with low-level background disorder” according to a criminal justice academic. Thus the wearable cameras are being trialled as a both a means to deter bad behaviour and also as an opportunity to record positive learning in the classroom.

Principal lecturer at the Institute of Criminal Justice Studies at the University of Portsmouth, Tom Ellis, has said the teachers may use the cameras to film “when necessary”.

Meanwhile the cameras, worn by police, parking wardens and even school crossing-patrol officers in Britain, has been used in schools across the US since 2015.

Mediareach Marketing at the IFE

Mediareach-Marketing-IFE-0
The Mediareach team attended the twentieth edition of the ‘International Food & Drink Event’, eager to seek out trends in the industry and potential marketing prospects with the hundreds of locals and international businesses attending. The IFE is the UK’s Largest gathering of global food & drink buyers and suppliers, connecting every person from every background through a love and appreciation for food across all cultures and those looking to establish their brands as a local household name.

The team were delighted to see so many fresh and innovative businesses enthusiastic to share their unique food brands with the world. We scouted the event for entrepreneurs with raw passion who were seeking guidance on how to edge their product onto store shelves and into people’s homes.

Since 2014 there has been a significant growth in vegan and gluten free diets, with hundreds of stalls advertising related produce. Halal products are also becoming more popular; corresponding with the rise of the Islamic population in the UK.

Is Mark Zuckerberg the new Bill Gates?

zuckerbergIn the 90s Bill Gates held a strong handle on the tech industry. Microsoft became known as the company that would win at any cost under Gates’ leadership. When Microsoft couldn’t buy a competing app or web browser, it would simply create its own to crush its rival, and would sell it to its huge existing customer base.

Could history be repeating itself in the form of Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook? Snap’s recent $3 billion IPO could be seen as a response to its ongoing strive for dominance within the social networking sphere, and the subsequent growing pressure it is facing from its competitors Facebook and Instagram.

Facebook launched Instagram Stories back in August 2016, replicating Snapchat’s feature of the same name. Meanwhile Snapchat reported a dip in user growth in the second half of 2016, which many argue may be due to Instagram’s adoption of the ‘story’ function.

Similarly Facebook started testing Snapchat-style stories in its main app in January. This could result in yet another dip in users for Snapchat.

Gates probably would have adopted a similar tactic in capitalising on the “Stories” feature during the Microsoft era. Moreover it is well known that Zuckerberg has long suffered from Snapchat envy. Facebook attempted to purchase the startup app in 2013 for $3 billion in cash. Unsuccessful, Facebook released rival app ‘Poke’ the following month.

Though Poke didn’t take off, nor did its successor ‘Slingshot’ in 2014, Facebook’s message was clear; anything you can do, we can do…better. However, Snap saw a brief explosion in revenue growth, rising 590% from 2015 to 2016, following it’s IPO filing.

Pinterest takes a leaf out of Shazam’s book with new feature ‘Lens’

Pinterest's Lens feature
Pinterest introduced an app last month that allows users to identify objects in the real world. The new feature, titled Lens, allows the Pinterest smartphone app to identify objects and thereafter, show you images and information about similar objects uploaded by other Pinterest users. The app functions almost as a kind of ‘Shazam’ for objects. Whether you point it at food, furniture or even the night sky, the Pinterest tool will use its machine vision to display objects that it believes are related.

In a demonstration for the feature, Pinterest co-founder Evan Sharp used Lens to detect a pomegranate. Pinterest returned results for pomegranate bread, pomegranate sandwiches, and tips for peeling pomegranates. Sharp also described an instance in which Lens was pointed towards the night sky. Pinterest in turn, brought up a selection of nigh-time landscape photos.

Donald Trump…a saviour?

Donald TrumpThrough his relentless barrage of abuse, most notably on Twitter, and consistent claims of the spreading of “fake news”, Trump has branded the field of political journalism as one that is not to be trusted. The executive leader has even gone as far as to deny the Washington press access to his administration.

So it should come as no surprise that there are those that claim that he is destroying the mainstream media as we know it. However, the opposite may be true in fact.

Trump appears to have given news organisations the sustainable commercial future they have been so desperately seeking. According to New York Times chief executive, Mark Thompson, Trump has generated phenomenal traffic for news websites such as the Guardian, Mail Online, Buzzfeed News and The Independent. In fact CNN, an organisation Trump repeatedly condemned for circulating fake news, reported 2016 as the news channel’s ‘most watched year’. As such, these news corporations have seen a significant rise in revenue.

Why millennials may be struggling in the workplace

Multiracial business people working together connected with tech
Millennials are struggling in the workplace and are being labelled by bosses as self-entitled, narcissistic, lazy and tough to manage, says motivational speaker and author Simon Sinek. Though Sinek believes to have discovered the reason behind this – “failed parenting strategies”.

After the success of his video on millennials in the workplace, Sinek spoke to The Independent and explained that the parenting style millennials have experienced, combined with social media, work environments and impatient tendencies, may be at fault for generation Y’s professional struggles. He suggests that the above factors have led to a generation plagued by low self-esteem. Sinek noted that whilst growing up, millennials became accustomed to receiving unwarranted praise from their parents. Subsequently he states that they have grown up with unrealistic expectations and face shock when entering the real world as their self-images are shattered.

Staff have right to disconnect

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It wasn’t long ago that clients used to send briefs to agencies by post and bike, but with the advent of technology and more notably, greater access to email through handheld devices, there has been a considerable increase in the workload for staff in advertising firms across the UK and Europe.

This has lead to huge amounts of pressure and stress on marketing agency staff as it has been found that a number are taking their work home and are unable to switch off. As a result, many are leaving the industry altogether.

Earlier this year, France’s labour minister Myriam El Khomri took a stand by introducing the “Right to disconnect” law, which stipulated that organisations with over 50 staff members were required to negotiate with employees on their right to switch off from work.

Millennials are less mobile than previous generations

Teenagers Young Team Together Cheerful Concept

According to analysis by the Pew Research Center, only 20 percent of 25 to 35 year olds reported a change of address in 2016, compared to 26 percent of Gen Xers in 2000. Meanwhile, in 1990 27 percent reported to have moved homes in the year prior.

Subsequently, today’s young Americans have been revealed to be less mobile than the previous four generations were at the same age, with the trend underscoring a pattern across all demographic groups. The research revealed that the overall share of Americans of all ages who moved homes in the previous year fell to an all-time low of 11.2% in 2016, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Economists are concerned by the trend as moving has previously been linked to the pursuit of job opportunities and with the economy improving, they would expect Americans to be moving in greater numbers. Millennials in particular, would be expected to be mobile since they are less likely to be tied down by three of the things that tend to hinder people from moving – a spouse, a house, or a child.

World’s first commercial flying car is now on sale

Flying car
A Dutch vehicle manufacturer has initiated the commercial sale of the world’s first flying car, the PAL-V Liberty. Available in two varieties, the PAL-V Liberty Sport and the Liberty Pioneer are two-person three-wheelers and are capable of flying at speeds of up to 112mph.

Whilst the Sport is the cheaper of the two with the base model starting at $400,000, the Pioneer is priced at $600,000.

PAL-V states that it takes 10 minutes to switch from driving to flying mode and in the air you may travel for 310 miles on a full tank.

The PAL-V Liberty has two distinct attributes that differentiate it from other flying vehicle concepts. The first is that the lift is created by a wind-powered rotor so that the car has the ability to float in the air, whilst the second unique feature is the three-wheel design and the soft-tilting motion in curves.