Posts tagged with "quality"

Oscar Stone illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Oscar Stone LTD

By: Emily Bunn x Vaughn Lowery

Oscar Stone LTD is a family-owned jewelry firm based in the Bronx, New York. Oscar Stone sells timeless jewelry, including customizable earrings, watches, bracelets, pendants, chains, and mouth grillz, which are all created from the beginning to the end internally. Oscar’s most popular article, baguette diamond earrings, dazzle his clients with their blinding beauty. Oscar Stone recognizes the value of using durable diamonds and jewelry from the Bronx community.

While lockdown created a lull for other companies, Oscar used the downtime to bolster his burgeoning business. His reach on social media via Instagram featured Oscar to many celebrity customers, including Jojo Simmons, Young Dirty Bastard, and Kid Capri, among others. Oscar Stone‘s jewelry exudes a true dedication to his craft, which is why his extensive list of clients keeps expanding.

The last authentic district of New York, the Bronx, houses the next largest jeweler in New York. Oscar Stone LTD stands apart from other jewelers such as Jacob the Jeweler, Greenwich Street Jewelers, and Martin Busch Jewelers because of its innovative approach to bespoke jewelry and sustainable practices and inspirational dedication to their craft. Oscar’s relentless pursuit of fine diamonds and customer satisfaction during the pandemic has allowed his business to flourish more than ever. Looking to the future, Oscar aims to continue creating custom designs for his customers and grow his business to become a familiar name.

We talked with Oscar about his background in gemology, his favorite custom orders, and his business expansion plans in the Bronx.

How did you get started in making jewelry and performing gemology for Oscar Stone?

I’m a G.I.A. accredited gemologist. Basically, growing up my whole life, [my] family– aunts, uncles, cousins– we all just did jewelry. So getting the jewelry was the easy part. It’s a family trade, really; it’s one of our best-kept secrets.

How did you build your clientele when you began in the jewelry business?

I knew about jewelry; gold wasn’t something crazy new to me. It’s like all your aunts and uncles own auto repair shops–you fix a couple of the tires, do a couple of oil changes, and you just kind of figure it out by yourself. When I had my own spot, building my clientele did really start from scratch. I didn’t have any celebrities or influencers, so I just had to open up shop and see what I could do. Before I did that, I actually did go to GIA (Gemological Institute of America) diamond school. I knew that GIA offered courses for this type of stuff. I spent a couple of months educating myself–[even] just [concerning] diamonds; there’s so many things about diamonds.

Once I finished the education, I decided to really bring in some clients. I was in business for about three years, and then I just started going heavy on social media. Once I started publishing my work on social media, the followers started coming. You know, not[hing] crazy yet, but I started getting a couple thousand [followers]. That’s when the business started taking off. I started hiring friends of mine and a lot of people, [and] my staff grew from four or five people to like twenty-five people. Business exploded when I started getting people who were verified on Instagram and had 300–400,000 followers. Once I started getting those clientele, the ball really started rolling. And that’s where we are now, about a year later.

What celebrities/notable clients have you done jewelry work for?

I would say the biggest guy that I’ve done work for would be, Jojo Simmons from RUN–D.M.C. I’ve done work for Young Dirty Bastard, who is the son of Old Dirty Bastard from the Wu Tang Clan. [Regarding] household names, I’ve done guys as big as Tonio Skits and Darius D.K. [Also,] I’ve done work for [Kid] Capri.

How do you source the best diamonds/gems for jeweling?

I don’t always get the same diamonds from the same supplier. The reason is, once you start working with somebody for diamonds and you guys get comfortable, then they start sending you lesser quality parcels. A parcel is basically like a bag of diamonds, [which come in] a lot of different sizes. They should all be the same clarity, and you sort through them to see that the quality is consistent.

I can buy 50 carats of diamonds this month [or] this week, and then I’ll run out by making all the jewelry. And so, I need to reorder. If the quality starts to become inconsistent with the price that I’m paying, I’ll switch over to another diamond supplier. Most of my diamond suppliers are in India, so I’ve had to fly out there a few times and look at some parcels, look at some factories, and see how they’re all doing it.

[Or, for example,] if I have to build a watch and do it three weeks, and [clients] don’t give me enough time, I have to get [diamonds] local[ly].

What is your favorite jewelry design you sell?

My favorite designs [are] always the custom pieces I make. I always love doing custom work, I just love like how intricate they are. I just did a piece for a client of mine–it’s this huge custom piece that spins when you spin it. I’ve had the most fun working on it, that’s my favorite piece right now. I’m working on another one that might top it, but we’re gonna keep it under wraps for now.

What is your jewelry specialty?

My signature I would say is the baguette earrings, that’s what most people know me for. Out of all my followers, I would say 20,000 of them might have been from the baguette earrings.

I do really, really good with the baguette diamond earrings that are on my website. I could sell as many as 20 pairs a day. A lot of people [who] are from out of state buy that. A lot of people [come] in store as well. The baguette diamonds are just such a popular thing for me right now. I have to make hundreds and hundreds of pairs just to keep up with demand.

What is the most popular order you receive from clients?

The baguette diamonds are just like something you really don’t see out of New York. And so, people love them. It’s also my bread and butter…It’s gonna go, it’s gonna sell, and sell classic.

What’s next for you?

I’m going to be moving to another location on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx–I’m true to the Bronx, I don’t wanna leave the Bronx. So, I’m moving to a store that is down the block from me. It has three times the retail space, and a basement attached to it. I’ll be able to really put a factory down there. As long as the people keep loving my jewelry and what I do, I’m going to keep delivering the best I can. To do that, and to give the best prices, you need to do things in-house. I’m going to have a 1500 sq ft basement where I’ll be able to put ten diamond setters down there and set diamonds all day. The second floor will be an office to do all the online [work]. On the floor-level will be retail and the showroom, so people who want to see things in-person, I can show them right there. That is my short-term goal in the next one or two years. Long term, I want to be a household name, but one thing at a time.

Photo Credit:  Anthony Duque

Oscar Stone LTD Baguette Diamond Earrings

Green Car by Mina Tocalini for 360 Magazine

Easy Ways to Keep Your Car Perfectly Maintained

So you finally bought a new car–or at least, new to you–and you want to keep it running and looking as new as can be. Here are some long-term car maintenance tips that you can use to ensure that.

Be Careful While Driving

Nothing will ruin your car faster than getting into an accident. By getting into the habit of checking your mirrors before you get on the road and making sure all of the turn signals are working, you can see and be seen while maneuvering through traffic.

Fluids Matter

Just like your body, your car needs to have all of the right fluids at the proper levels. Make sure to check the oil at the recommended intervals, as well as check other fluids such as transmission and coolant. When the fluid levels are all properly monitored, the engine operates under much less stress than it would otherwise.

Wash and Wax

While you may not think of washing and waxing your car as a form of maintenance, it really is. By washing your car on a regular basis. as well as waxing it, you can do more than just give a nice shine to the vehicle. You are removing dirt and grime that can damage the exterior of the car. In certain areas of the country, your car may even be subject to road salt that can eat away at your car and destroy the undercarriage. If you are unsure of the proper washing and waxing techniques, you can check out a guide that provides pro tips on how to get the job done.

Watch Your Tires

Driving on balding tires can prove to be extremely dangerous. When the tires have a lack of traction, they can easily spin out of control. If the tires are too worn, they may actually blow out while you are driving. To maintain the tread of the vehicle, always make sure the tires are inflated to the recommended pressure level.

Don’t Ignore the Signs

All cars have warning lights that indicate there is a problem with the vehicle. It is never a good idea to ignore these. As soon as possible after a warning light comes on, take the vehicle into a mechanic or an auto parts store and have them figure out the issue is–otherwise it could lead to a more severe long-term issue.

You Get What You Pay For

While you should avoid shops that overcharge, you should also avoid mechanics that are always trying to give cheap repairs or use improper techniques. Find a mechanic who stands behind their work, but who also uses quality parts to get the job done. Failure to do so may result in vehicle degradation, accidents, and even void the warranty that naturally comes with newer cars. You’ll be glad you went with quality over price.

Marijuana illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Honest Marijuana Company

In the old days of illegal weed, the price you paid for your weekend toke depended mostly on who was selling it to you. These were behind-the-scenes transactions, with no recourse for a deal gone bad and no way to price compare with a competitor. You paid the price asked or you went without.

Now, as state legalization grows and the chatter about federal legalization becomes less talk and more reality, the game has changed forever for the buyer. So, it’s a good time to be clear on what you’re paying for before you go to your local cannabis boutique, or even the corner store, if you should be so lucky to have marijuana available for sale there!

First off, price comparing starts with quantity

If you want to look at what your weed is going to cost you, and even compare different strains, it’s best to pick a quantity. From state to state, the price of quantity X will vary, based on factors we’ll discuss later, but for now, it’s important to understand what quantities you can order in. 

The most common quantities you can buy cannabis in are a gram, eighth of an ounce, quarter of an ounce, half an ounce, and a full ounce. Notice how the common quantities mix metric and Imperial measuring units? A gram is 1/1000th of a kilogram and an ounce is 1/16th of a pound. Typically, you’ll find that dispensaries will use ounces for larger quantities, and grams for a smaller purchase.

What does a gram look like? It’s about the size of a bottle cap, which gives you a visual point of reference to figure out what you’re getting for what price. The average joint is about 0.7 grams of weed so a gram will give you about 1.5 joints. Here are the other measurements, to give you a rough idea of what you’re getting:

  • An eighth of an ounce (which is roughly 3.5 grams) will give you just about 5 joints.
  • A quarter of an ounce (7 grams) will net about 10 joints.
  • A half an ounce (14 grams) will give you about 20 joints.
  • A full ounce (28 grams) is just about equal to 40 joints.

From Alaska to West Virginia, that price per ounce of medium quality weed can run anywhere from $6 to $12.

Quality is the next factor

If you look at average prices of weed across the country, they’re pretty stable and typically refer to medium quality cannabis. When you want to compare a gram of cannabis from one shop to another, a major increase in price could be because of the quality of the product. 

For example, an organic and locally indoor grown variety might be more expensive than a mass produced, imported one. You really do have to compare apples to apples, if you want to be sure you’re getting the right picture.

Other factors that will influence the price of weed

Your state’s legal stance toward cannabis

If you live in a state where cannabis isn’t legal in any form, obviously you’re still operating in the old ways of quiet deals made with people who don’t really care to negotiate the prices they feel like charging. After all, they risk going to jail for providing you with your ‘chill’ so there’s a premium attached to that.

In the states that have legalized recreational marijuana (Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington), you’ll find competition higher and prices that reflect that.

The remaining twenty-one states that have legalized medical marijuana require a doctor’s note to obtain it, which isn’t a particularly challenging hurdle in most places, so this doesn’t affect the prices too significantly.

One place where cannabis is particularly expensive? Washington D.C. Despite legalization of medical and recreational use, they didn’t legalize the purchase of cannabis. That little detail is reflected in prices that are almost twice the national average for legalized / decriminalized states!

The physical geography of where you live

Cannabis isn’t an overly fussy plant to cultivate but it does prefer warm, stable temperatures, averaging in the daytime around 80 degrees. Places that have daytime temperatures that run hotter than 88 degrees or colder than 60 degrees have a harder time growing—it’s a slower process—and can end up with plants that have lower THC content and therefore lower overall quality.

So, if you live in Alaska or New Hampshire, for example, your weed has most likely been brought in from elsewhere, which means added costs in transportation and labor, to package and ship.

How your weed is grown

How your preferred brand is grown makes a difference on quality. 

  • Are they grown outdoors where light, water, soil, and ambient daytime temperatures are all free for the asking and therefore don’t add to the cost of production? 
  • Are they grown indoors, where special electrical lighting, watering and feed systems, and climate control are all required and add to the cost of production? 

Outdoor grown weed can be lower quality in that there aren’t many ways to control Mother Nature. Being able to control elements through technology can yield a higher quality product. From pest and humidity control to very specific watering schedules, as well as the use of light waves to maximize growth and intensity, indoor growers have the keys to control quality in ways that outdoor growers really cannot.

Factor in also whether the grower is using organic production methods, as this will definitely yield a higher quality product. No toxins from pesticides means a cleaner experience for you.

Where you buy your marijuana

Are you buying from a boutique dispensary or a corner store? Are you buying from a chain of cannabis stores or from a one-man dealer? Which way you go will affect the price you pay.

Dispensaries have overhead and staff to pay, which adds to the cost. However, they also have guidelines to follow in terms of packaging and labeling, as well as a vested interest in pleasing their customer, so they’re a good bet. You will know exactly what you’re getting, including the sourcing, THC content, whether it’s organic or not and so on. If you buy from a dealer, who is claiming to sell high quality products, you have no guarantees whatsoever that they are telling the truth.

Competitors drive the price down

Supply and demand is an easy equation. If there are several dispensaries with similar offerings in your area, the price per gram will be lower than in an area with no competition for your one dispensary. There is less supply for potentially similar demand, which can easily affect the price. The key as a consumer is to know your average pricing so you can tell whether or not you are getting a good deal.

Taxation and legalization go hand in hand

The states that have legalized marijuana have also clued in that it is an important revenue source. Sales tax, if the state has one, is applied to cannabis too. The rate can be higher for weed than for other products, as it is in Colorado. They have a state sales tax rate of 2.9% but the rate for weed? 10%.

In addition to sales tax, legal sellers are faced with taxes in production, purchasing, packing and transportation, costs that are typically downloaded to the end consumer.

The timing of your purchases

Time of year can impact the price of weed. Like most cultivated crops, the largest amounts are harvested in and around the month of September. Result? The supply is up, and prices should go down a little. 

As legalization continues to expand, state to state and even federally, the pricing will become more standard and easier to predict. At that point, the quality of the weed will be the big differentiator and as the end consumer, that’s not a small factor to consider. Buy with care and enjoy yourself!

Bio:

Anthony Franciosi, also known as Ant, is an honest to goodness farmer whose fingers are as green as the organic cannabis he grows. He is the proud founder of Honest Marijuana– an all-natural, completely organic marijuana growery in Colorado.

Questlove Supreme with Reverend Al Sharpton illustration for use by 360 Magazine

Questlove Supreme Black History Month Programming

Last Week Featured Acclaimed Episode With Iconic Singer-Songwriter Stephanie Mills

Acclaimed music & pop culture-based iHeart Podcast Series, Questlove Supreme, today releases its newest episode featuring an exclusive interview with the legendary, Reverend Al Sharpton. This episode of Questlove Supreme is the perfect way close out the podcast’s Black History Month programming while continuing the conversation.

At 4 years old Reverend Al Sharpton knew what his mission would be in life and so his journey began as a great orator, warrior and leader in the plight of justice and equality for Black people. Listen as Reverend Al shares his story with Quest and Team Supreme and find out how music was pivotal in framing his story.

Listen to this week’s episode featuring Reverend Al Sharpton, out today HERE.

Listen to last week’s episode with Stephanie Mills HERE.

Prior guests on Questlove Supreme have included Mariah Carey, Zoe Kravitz, James Taylor, Seth Rogan,  Estelle, Jimmy Fallon, Kurtis Blow and several others. It was announced earlier this year that Questlove Supreme is rolling out Classic Episodes from years past on Mondays. These episodes will include conversations with Michelle Obama, Cree Summer, Lenny Kravitz, Chris Rock, Maya Rudolph, Weird Al and many more. Check them out HERE.

Questlove Supreme is a fun, irreverent and educational weekly podcast that digs deep into the stories of musical legends and cultural icons in a way that only Questlove and Team Supreme can deliver. Each episode is driven by conversation ranging from the guest’s origins (along with a few never-before-revealed secrets to their success) to their life passions and current projects. Additional hosts on the series include renowned and award-winning on-air personality and music commentator Laiya St.Clair, GRAMMY Award-nominated rapper/singer Phonte Coleman, GRAMMY, Tony and Emmy award winning music director “Unpaid” Bill Sherman, and engineer for Questlove, The Roots, The Tonight Show and Elvis Costello, “Suga” Steve Mandel.

Outlierman Reopens

The Outlierman company was formed with a mission to handcraft a range of accessories that match the breath-taking beauty, exquisite quality and timeless appeal of the world’s most iconic cars. Following the temporary closure of The Outlierman after the COVID-19 outbreak, the Bologna-based company are reopening for business, supplying gentleman drivers across the world with luxury Italian driving products.

The Outlierman was born out of a desire to create the finest automotive accessories – its designers have an insatiable appetite for creating new items and introduce fresh collections every month. Amongst some of

The Outlierman’s most recent product launches, include:

The Powerslide – Driving Gloves (Suede Grey/Racing Red),

Gran Turismo – Driving Gloves

(British Racing Green/Cognac), the Weekender Garment Bag

(Lava/Black/Red) and the exclusive Tailor-Made Lab

Andrea Mazzuca, founder of The Outlierman, said: “After a temporary period of closure, my team and I are extremely pleased to be reopening

The Outlierman and making luxury Italian driving accessories for car enthusiasts across the globe.

“The COVID-19 outbreak has been devastating for many businesses around the world, including numerous in Italy, and I wish that as many as possible can recover from these terrible circumstances. It’s been a tough period for us, especially after the cancellation of this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, which meant we couldn’t launch our 2020 collaboration. However, we are already in the process of developing next year’s design and hope to bring it to you in 2021. In the meantime, my colleagues and I are very keen to get back to what we are most passionate about, and we are excited to continue sharing our passion with other motoring enthusiasts worldwide.

“The health and safety of our colleagues at work is paramount. Our skilled artisans will have strict provisions in place to ensure they are safe whilst producing goods, including the use of face masks, gloves and observing social distancing in the workshop.”

The latest Outlierman products can be found here.

Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

Chop, Chop, Chop – By Using The Right Kind Of Shears

If you belong to the school of thought that a haircut is just a haircut, and often, make use of household scissors and a bowl to give an unfortunate individual a haircut, then you ought to quit trying to be a hairstylist.

At the very least, get rid of the bowl that you make use of to give a straight-lined boy-cut. 

Moreover, using a pair of household scissors with its blunt edges and bulkiness ends up damaging the hair, and creating more split-ends.

Thus, if you do get the thought to look around for a decent pair of scissors, preferably meant for hair cutting, then you might just have a future in the field of hairstyling.

So, if you’re thinking of buying yourself a new pair of shears, here are the questions you ought to ask yourself first.

What is the right length?

Now, if you happen to be a professional barber then you ought to have both the longer shears as well as the shorter ones. The longer pair is for techniques where you don’t hold the hair in your hand. Whereas, the shorter length in shears is generally used for when you do cut the hair, holding it in your hands.

And, if anyone has told you about measuring the blade against the palm of your hand, just ignore that little piece of advice. 

Most cosmetologists tend to go with the flow, holding the shears to see if it feels right in their hands.

On the other hand, if you do happen to be a first-timer, then go ahead and buy yourself a shorter blade because you will be holding on to the hair no matter the length.

What scissors best suits my needs?

Yes, it’s all about your needs. You have to understand that shears are now aero-dynamically designed to suit the needs of the hairstylists. 

So, if you’re right-handed, then the features are designed such that it will fit perfectly into the hands of a right-handed person. 

And, you need not worry if you are left-handed. As there are now shears available in the market to deftly fit into the hands of a lefty.

The uppermost thought you ought to keep in your mind is comfort. Now, three different types of handles are available. 

Swivel-handle shear: Most commonly used by professionals. Known to fit the hand and relax pressure on the wrists. It caused quite a rage when it was first introduced.

Drop handle: Similar to the traditional offset shear, the drop handle shear, however, offers an additional ergonomic grip that allows a firm hold and causes less strain on the hand. It is gaining much popularity.

Precision cutting shears: Much smaller and also daintier, these shears are manufactured with low hardness steel and are used for very close cuts. 

What kind of blades should I use?

Technically, all hair-dressing shears are of stainless steel. Now, when you talk of the finest shears in the market, there are two that ought to be mentioned. 

These are the Japanese shears that are also known as the clamshell or convex edge, that are reputed for giving the smoothest cut. 

And, then there is the German shear. German-style shears have non-honed, beveled edges that are serrated to grip the hair. These give a little stiffer cut but are great when working in thick sections, like for dry-cutting.

One thing to remember here is that all scissors, whether “Cobalted steel” or “Titanium scissors” are made of stainless steel. All need to be sharpened because it will get dull or nicked.

Do I need to buy the whole set?

If you are only into standards cuts, then save yourself the cost of buying an entire set of shears. 

However, if you do deal in precise haircutting styles such as slide cutting, thinning and style cutting, then it would be outrageous to attempt these styles with a single pair of scissors.

Where to buy these high-quality shears?

There are many shears available in the market, that are simply high-priced but do not have the premium high quality.

If you do not know much about the newbies boasting of manufacturing high-end quality scissors and selling them at exorbitant prices, then steer clear of them. 

But you still want a high-quality product, then you ought to stick to the established names in the field.

Keep an eye out for ball bearing tension systems and polymer inlays in the pivots that are both common features in high-end quality shears.

What look should I go for?

There’s a very good reason for discussing this aspect of high-quality shears at the very end. Quality and comfort are features that supersede looks. 

However, you can’t really take the style out of the stylists, now can you? So, there are several options available to you even if you regard the looks of a thing as relatively important.

There are colored titanium-coated shears. As mentioned earlier, these shears are merely coated with titanium, not made of it. This helps significantly in preventing rust.

Colored titanium shears come in a variety of amazing colors. The drawback, nonetheless, is that these shears tend to fade, scratch, or chip more easily than the classic stainless steel shears.

Next, comes in the colored finger inserts. Primarily, finger inserts are meant to provide more comfort and better fit. And, the finger inserts come in three sizes-small, medium and large.

 But, they are now used as a beautifying element of the good old pair of shears. So, you can find finger inserts coming in every imaginable color to pep up the look of the high-quality shears.

Finally, there are colored silencers. Silencers are also known as bumpers or stoppers. They serve as a stop for the scissors and keep them quiet as the shear comes together.

These too are now available in different colors and elevate the look of the shears aesthetically.

Finally, there’s the tension screw. This feature is of notable importance. Scissor tension is the tension of the screw that holds the two scissor blades together.

In most cases, it is a matter of personal preference. The blade should fall slightly and close halfway up the other blade. If the blade doesn’t move at all, your tension is too tight. On the other hand, if the blade falls completely closed, then the tension is too loose.

Now, for the cosmetologists, it isn’t possible to completely overlook the aesthetics of the tools they so commonly use, hence, this feature too comes in different colors to brighten up the look of the shears.

The upkeep of your high-quality shears

If you have managed to make up your mind and find for yourself the perfect pair of shears, please remember that you need to make an effort to keep it in mint condition.

You shouldn’t really have to clean your scissors very often, but if you have managed to get it dirty, make sure to clean it up immediately. Make sure to clean it up thoroughly to avoid rust.

If you’re not looking to replace your high-priced shears due to rust, the best way to get rid of rust is to soak the scissors in warm water with a tiny bit of bleach.

This ought to solve your problem once or twice, but if you’re not taking care to keep your shears clean and rust-free, then you will end up with a useless pair of shears.

No matter the quality of the shears, if you keep them dirty and wet then you will end up having to replace them fairly soon.

Also, it is a rule of thumb to have your shears sharpened every six months or at least after every 500-700 haircuts, to get a smooth cut every time.

The market for high-quality shears has advanced greatly in the last decade. So, you see an emphasis on every aspect of the very tool used for haircutting. 

Shears were only about sharp edges before, but today, it’s about the look, the grip, the shape, the metal, even the finish of the shears itself. Everything is of importance and the buyer is spoiled for choice.

But, these high-end quality shears are exactly as the name suggests, and do in fact deliver enduring comfort for the hairstylists. And, without a doubt elevate the haircutting technique.

Hopefully, you have gained some insight as to the aspects one ought to consider before buying a high-quality, high priced pair of shears. 

However, doing a little bit of research never really hurts anyone, so do ask around about the best names in the market dealing with high-quality shears. 

And, if you really don’t feel the urge to plod around looking for different brands of shears, let us give you another useful tip. Try out scissortec.com, where you are going to find a whole range of high-end quality products, with varying price tags, features, and colors.

Ford Honors Pirelli at 21st Annual World Excellence Awards

Pirelli was recognized as a top-performing global supplier at the 21st annual Ford World Excellence Awards, receiving a Brand Pillar of Sustainability World Excellence Award presented by Hau Thai-Tang, Ford chief product development and purchasing officer and Linda Cash, Ford vice president, quality and new model programs.

“It is an honor to receive the Sustainability World Excellence Award from Ford,” said Marco Crola, CEO of Pirelli Tire North America. “Sustainability is a fundamental choice for Pirelli. It is fully integrated into the Group’s vision and strategies for growth, in all business areas and in all management decisions, everywhere in the world. We applaud Ford for its strong leadership in sustainability: it has been an important stakeholder for Pirelli in areas such as responsible sourcing of natural rubber (see our work at http://naturalrubber.pirelli.com), carbon reduction, and materials innovation. This is the second year in a row Pirelli has been awarded a top award from Ford for global performance; our partnership is important and we look forward to supporting Ford in future”, Crola added.

“The Pirelli team continues to take big strides in developing innovative products for a more responsible automotive industry. With Ford’s commitment to making mobility more efficient and sustainable, Pirelli plans to partner in this path, every step of the way,” said Ernest Bedia, vice president of Original Equipment Pirelli Tire North America. “My sincere gratitude to everyone involved in the cooperation between Ford and Pirelli to help create a better future.”

“Ford’s annual World Excellence Awards recognize our top-performing suppliers for their contributions to our success,” said Thai-Tang. “Suppliers like Pirelli play an instrumental role in helping us achieve our vision of being the most trusted mobility company.”

The award winners achieved the highest levels of global excellence in 10 categories, including:

  • Quality, sustainability, safe and smart categories for suppliers that demonstrate leadership in Ford’s primary brand pillars
  • Aligned business framework for suppliers that most exemplify the framework’s principles, with an emphasis on quality, value and innovation
  • Special recognition for suppliers that delivered results exceeding expectations
  • Diverse supplier of the year and supplier diversity development corporation of the year to honor suppliers that excel in integrating diversity into their organization and business process
  • Gold and silver for supplier manufacturing sites demonstrating superior quality, delivery and cost performance throughout the year

About Pirelli

Pirelli was founded in 1872 and has its headquarters in Milan, Italy. Pirelli focuses its business on the high end, premium product segment where it is a world leader. Pirelli has a commercial presence in over 160 countries and 19 factories in 12 countries. Successfully competing in motorsports since 1907, Pirelli is currently the exclusive supplier of the Formula 1© championship, the Superbike world championship, and many other championships around the world.

Pirelli is recognized as a socially and environmentally aware corporation that applies sustainable practices in everything from “green performance” products to responsible sourcing, to providing a healthy environment for its workers.  The company is currently global leader in the auto components sector of the Dow Jones Sustainability World and Europe Indexes, on the CDP Climate Change A List, and a leader in several other indexes and rankings such as Euronext Vigeo, Ethibel Pioneer and Ethibel Excellence, ECPI and Oekom.

Pirelli Tire North America includes the Modular Integrated Robotized System (MIRS) facility and research and development center at its Rome, Georgia headquarters, a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Silao, Mexico, sales and marketing offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Detroit, Montreal and Mexico City, and a prestige flagship store in Los Angeles. The company manufactures, distributes and markets original equipment and replacement tires for export and domestic car/motorcycle applications. For more information regarding Pirelli, please visit www.pirelli.com

Course Records Broken At Dubai Marathon

Getaneh Molla of Ethiopia and Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich won the 20th edition of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon today (Jan 25) with both athletes producing spectacular course records that rank among the fastest times in the history of marathon running.

In excellent weather conditions, Ethiopian Molla clocked 2:03:34, achieving the first sub-2:04 time in Dubai. He improved the former course record – set in 2018 – by 26 seconds and became the sixth fastest marathon runner ever. It is also an unofficial world debut record by the 25-year-old.

Second-placed Herpassa Negasa also ran sub-2:04 with 2:03:40, making him the eighth fastest of all time, while Asefa Mengstu completed an all-Ethiopian podium with 2:04:24 for third place. In a stunning women’s race, Kenya’s Chepngetich achieved the third fastest time in history with 2:17:08. Only Britain’s world record holder Paula Radcliffe and Kenya’s Mary Keitany have ever run faster as the 24-year-old smashed the course record by more than two minutes.

Underlining the quality of the field, Worknesh Degefa – the winner in Dubai in 2017 – broke the Ethiopian record by 15 seconds to become the fourth fastest runner ever in 2:17:41. Her compatriot Worknesh Edesa took third in 2:21:05.

Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and under the aegis of the Dubai Sports Council, the event once again underlined its status as a world-class IAAF Gold Label Marathon.

Molla smashing the course record on his marathon debut and Chepngetich’s duel with Degefa were the undoubted highlights. The Kenyan was having problems identifying her drinks’ bottles at feed stations, and regularly fell behind, which may have cost her the Kenyan/African record held by colleague Mary Keitany, the second fastest in history with 2.17.01.

Molla said he did not know what to expect from his first marathon. “I certainly didn’t expect to run 2.03,” said the new champion. “I was hoping for maybe 2.05 or 2.06 so this is a great win for me.”

While the spoils were shared between Kenya and Ethiopia in the elite Marathon, in the wheelchair category, there was a Swiss double with Marcel Hug and Sandra Graf winning in 1h:24m:09s and 1h:41m:03s respectively before the trophies were presented by His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Sports Council Deputy Chairman Mattar Al Tayer and Standard Chartered UAE CEO Rola Abu Manneh.

As usual, more than 20,000 runners also took part in the associated 10km Road Race and 4km Fun Run as the Middle East’s biggest mass participation sporting event celebrated is 20th birthday in style. The event was streamed live with no rights restrictions and is available to watch on repeat at bit.ly/2019DubaiMarathon_Live.

In addition to Standard Chartered as title sponsor, the Dubai Marathon was supported by the Dubai Sports Council, adidas, Dubai Eye 103.8FM, Aquafina and Gatorade, Dubai Holding, Dubai Municipality, Dubai Police and the RTA.

Which Wireless Firms Are Doing Well?

The study is out for the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Wireless Network Quality Performance Study—Vol. 1.

As the release linked above describes, this study measures network quality experienced by customers with wireless phones and network performance of tablets and mobile broadband devices. It’s based on responses from 32,159 wireless customers and was fielded from July through December 2018. Carrier performance is examined in six regions: Mid-Atlantic, North Central, Northeast, Southeast, Southwest and West.

The metric used is quality problems per 100 connections (PP100) in call quality, messaging quality, and data quality in each region. Simply put, the lower the number, the fewer problems customers experienced by customers and the better the overall experience is.

The release notes that wireless network problems are rising among customers in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and North Central regions, but that problems have decreased in the Southeast region.

As for what carrier is doing the best overall, Verizon is the clear leader. It ranks highest in all six regions covered in the study, achieving the lowest network quality problems per 100 connections (PP100) in call quality, messaging quality and data quality in each region. T-Mobile ties Verizon in data quality in the Northeast region.

You can find specific charts for each region in the study.

Here’s the link to last year’s release if you’d like to compare.

Bentley Announces World’s Fastest Wi-Fi

Bentley announced the launch of Advanced Connectivity – the world’s first super-fast, reliable and secure in-car WiFi system.

Customers can now benefit from uninterrupted mobile network coverage while traveling, providing a fully functioning and fully connected executive office on the move.

For example, when using the Advanced Connectivity WiFi system while travelling at speeds of 110 km/h (70 mph), a passenger is able to access a number of simultaneous entertainment and business applications – including high-definition video streaming across multiple devices – with uninterrupted service quality.

The Advanced Connectivity system can be simply accessed via a dedicated app on the customer’s smartphone.

Users will also benefit from Bentley Skype for Business and significant virtual office applications, such as the ability to access and edit files on the go, hold vital video conferences, conduct multiple meetings and be present for crucial discussions, all in a secure virtual environment.

The super-fast and highly reliable connection also offers customers new, unrivalled levels of in-car entertainment. Bentley Advanced Connectivity allows online video services to stream content uninterrupted in the car, for a truly luxury viewing experience.

How Bentley Advanced Connectivity Work

Bentley conducted an exhaustive international search to find the perfect partner for its in-car connectivity requirements, and has enlisted global communications company, Viasat, to provide the world’s best and most secure in-car technology for its customers.

Bentley Advanced Connectivity is a multi-channel virtual private network (VPN), which can aggregate up to three mobile network operators on one super-fast signal. The connectivity system is placed discreetly inside the boot lid, with the router connected to the on-board DC power supply.

The Wi-Fi router links to a broadband connected hub located at a static site. This hub then links the Bentley system to the broadband connection at the host site, for unparalleled connectivity, reliability and security.

Viasat is recognised internationally for having managed 14 million WiFi hotspots; for having operated a managed hotspot network in nearly 30 countries; and for bringing satellite-enabled in-flight WiFi to major commercial and government aircraft worldwide.

This new super-fast Wi-Fi service is available in all Bentley models in 2019.