Mango and modem art

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Auckland’s Mango Communications is helping push a new initiative to tart up the modem for client Orcon and to raise money for Forest & Bird. Orcon hopes to banish the boring modem (at least for a limited time) by commissioning five New Zealand artists to turn it into a work of art.

Otis Frizzell, Flox, Anna Leyland, Askew One and Andrew J. Steel have all crafted unique modem designs for the Orcon Designer Series. Each modem, as fitting for a work of art, is a limited edition, with only 500 of each kind available.

Sean Brown, general manager, Mango Communications says: “Orcon had the creative concept simmering away for a while and we were really happy to help bring the campaign to life.”

Taryn Hamilton, General Manager of Orcon, expects the Orcon Designer Series to help solve a real problem for home broadband users.

“Every week our customers call us with a common problem – they’re experiencing internet connectivity issues due to where they have placed their modem. Modems are often thrown in the cupboard, tucked under the couch or hidden somewhere far out of sight, when actually, they should be in a prominent spot for best coverage throughout the house, and where provides the strongest signal for devices like smart TVs that need the most bandwidth.

“We wanted to shake up the look of these seemingly boring units and what better way than collaborating with a bunch of super-talented Kiwis creatives.

Hayley has created a uniquely ‘Flox’ design with the infusion of bright colours and native birds, Anna Leyland’s ‘Perception’ and Otis Frizzell’s ‘Cable Manaia’ channel authentically Aotearoa designs, while Askew One and Andrew J. Steel’s artworks give a solid nod to their street art roots.

“The by-product of getting art onto modems was five pieces of awesome art. It was very tempting to hang them in our office, but we thought it would be better to make sure they went to a good home, and we could also help out a charity at the same time.

“Flox mentioned Forest & Bird, and it grew from there. All the artists are big fans of the work of Forest & Bird, as we are too, so it’s a great fit,” said Hamilton.

The TradeMe auctions for Flox, Otis Frizzell, Anna Leyland and Askew One’s original pieces will close 9pm, tonight. Andrew J. Steel’s ‘Laid Back’ will be auctioned on the artist’s own site later this month.

See the modem designs at: or check out the creations being made here:

Orcon’s top tips for modem placement:

  • Wi-Fi is essentially a radio signal – it can travel through walls, but it will weaken the further it travels. For best coverage throughout the home, pick a central location
  • With smart TVs and video streaming services on the rise, it’s likely that your TV will become the largest consumer of internet in the house. Somewhere near the TV is a prime spot
  • A key disruptor of smooth-sailing internet is interfering devices – avoid having the modem near the washing machine, Bluetooth devices, baby monitors, older cordless phones and the microwave – any household equipment that contains a large magnetic coil should be avoided
  • If you live in a built up area or an apartment complex, interference from your neighbours’ networks is also trouble. Where possible, try to avoid installing the router next to shared walls.

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