Saturday, May 28 2016 09:16

On the Road: Rugged WiFi Wherever You Might Roam…

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THE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Life of Dad, WiFi Family and NETGEAR for the #RuggedWiFi Promotion.

If “wearing many hats” is the metaphor for chronic multi-tasking, my virtual hat rack is full -- something that’s probably fairly obvious to anyone that’s followed my adventures on the social networks these past few years. On the surface, my #1 gig is being a parent - my wife and I raising The Rock Daughters™ with me as the (mostly) work-from-home parent while she maintains a career outside of the home. Thing is, as the years roll on, my travel has increased - the necessity of adventures in far-off locales… places where staying connected might not always be easy. On top of that, one of my lesser-known gigs involves my “other kids” - five of them. I serve as co-manager of the metal band Product of Hate - a gig that’s special to me as the boys are very much like my brothers, though on the artist management side there’s sometimes a “parental” vibe in looking out for their best interests, and part of that is helping to keep them connected to friends and family while out on the road. For their latest U.S. Tour, the AT&T Unite Explore by NETGEAR became a new tool in our arsenal - a Mobile WiFi Hotspot to put #RuggedWiFi* wherever the guys might be, as long as there’s a cell phone signal (4G LTE/4G where available).

Whether it’s six guys (the band + Gary the merch guy) traveling the country in a van, or getting ready to perform each night in a new city, the band use and family use are very much the same, with the ability to connect up to 15 devices at once. That means Adam can Facetime with his baby daughter back at home while Mike and Geno check email, Cody watches a video, Mark plays a game… but it goes beyond the smartphones and onto the bigger devices. We can have WiFi on-hand to power the laptops and tablets.

PRODUCT OF HATE - Connected at the Merch Booth
Streaming the latest video from the laptop, ready for the night on the tablet, #RuggedWiFi is ready.

For a touring band, one of the first questions asked each night at every venue is “what’s the WiFi password?” If there isn’t WiFi available, that’s a problem. Gary can be connected at the merch booth to process customer transactions and take inventory through our mobile app and card swipe (sometimes hard to do when WiFi isn’t available), and in the event someone else could use a connection, our NETGEAR hotspot is secure - but with Guest WiFi available. 

Connected on stage...
Connected from the stage during soundcheck.

Just like having kids at home, touring is messy. Venues and vans are dirty… stuff gets spilled, gear gets splashed, dropped, and dusty. Our hotspot is dust, water and shock resistant. If there’s not an outlet handy, there’s a BatteryBoost function to plug in and help keep your phone or tablet charged. And when the guys tour outside of the U.S., it’s Globally compatible with 4G LTE.


And on those off days? From the beaches of North Carolina to the hills of Gettysburg, there’s mobile internet just about anywhere.

PRODUCT OF HATE - Gettysburg
Soaking in history and staying connected.

The AT&T Unite Explore by NETGEAR is available from AT&T for just $49.99 with a two-year service contract. Click here to learn more.

Bonus: Join Life of Dad & WiFi Family for a #RuggedWiFi Twitter Party at 1pm ET on June 7, 2016! We’ll be chatting about our adventures while dishing out some sweet prizes including mobile hotspots and Visa Gift Cards!

Twitter Party

*Limitations for what “rugged” means:  Meets US MIL-STD-810G for shock-resistance. Certified IP65 for protection against dust and water jets. Device will not operate under water and should be dried as quickly as possible when wet. Shock resistant when dropped from ≤ 4 ft onto flat surface.

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

Learn more here

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