Tech Talk with Michael Hooper

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Jul 05, 2016

by LIANI SOLARI, Subeditor

The Qantas Wallabies vice-captain admits he’s old-school about some technologies – yet he can’t wait for a completely wireless future.

What’s your latest technology purchase?

It’s called a UE Boom, a cylinder-shaped wireless speaker that pumps a tune. It’s great for travelling as it’s so portable and lightweight. I took it camping recently and the battery lasted the whole time. 

Who will we hear pumping out of it?

I have eclectic taste. I like a bit of old-school and some rap… and Justin Bieber is a guilty pleasure. But then I also like my Fleetwood Mac and the classics. A bit of everything’s good.

What technology do you take on planes?

I’ve got a good pair of Beats earphones called Powerbeats. They’re wireless buds that hook over your ears. They’re also great for training when I’m at home by myself. I used to have noise-cancelling headphones but I went away from those; they took up too much room in my bag.

SEE ALSO: Do Not Disturb | The Best Noise-Cancelling Headphones

Do you use a lot of apps?

I’m not a massive app person but there’s one we incorporate into our gym training to help with tracking the weights we’ve lifted. It’s all done through the phone on an app called SpartaTrac.

What social networks are you on?

I’m on Facebook and Instagram. I prefer not to have a Twitter account. For me, personally, I don’t want to put my life out there in 140 characters or less – and I don’t think what I have to say is that interesting.

How often do you post to Instagram?

I don’t post often, if at all, any more. It’s the same thing as tweeting: I don’t want to put my pictures out there too much. But I do look at what’s going on [on social media]. I like Instagram because you can see what people are up to – again, a guilty pleasure. 

Your favourite social media moment?

I don’t really have one. I haven’t had any big followers. And I haven’t had anything trend – probably a good thing.

So Mick Jagger hasn’t followed you yet?

If Mick Jagger followed me, that would be cool, wouldn’t it? Something to brag about. But I’ve got no cool stories, unfortunately.

What’s your worst technology habit?

I’m trying not to use my phone as much as I do because you can find yourself sitting at a table with people and you’re all on your phones. It takes away from the personal interaction you should be having.

What will be your next tech purchase?

I need a new TV. I do like the curved ones but I’m not sold on one yet.

What’s been the best tech invention? 

For me, it’s probably two things. I think wireless music is the best thing ever. When there were Discmans, I remember thinking if you could just walk into your house and – bang! – turn on music and change it in your hand, that would be the best ever. And now it’s here.

And the other one?

GoPros. I was given one for my birthday last year. I haven’t taken it surfing yet but I’ve filmed a bit of surfing. When I was in Hawaii last year, the Pipe Masters [on Oahu’s North Shore] was on. I wasn’t swimming in those waves – they’re crazy! – but I swam around Waimea Bay with the GoPro when the surf was only small. It was cool. Again, coupled with wireless, you can put the photos straight onto your phone. It’s fantastic.

What technology are you looking forward to?

If we have wireless charging soon, that would be great. 

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