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25 households rev up for virtual Grand Prix

MEDIA RELEASE


Thursday August 25

25 households rev up for virtual Grand Prix

25 households from across New Zealand don race gear this weekend for a final online showdown using Xbox Live.

Xtra and HP's Connected Lives households will compete for line honours in the Connected Lives Grand Prix challenge and the chance to win the overall competition on Sunday August 28th at 4pm.

The online challenge will be carried out as part of the Xtra and HP Connected Lives programme in which 25 households have been selected to take part in a four-month programme to find out how New Zealanders use technology to enrich their lives.

Xbox Live is already the fastest growing unified broadband gaming service ever.

Xtra's broadband service connected to Xbox consoles will enable the Connected Lives households to play and talk to each other online in real time.

Participants will race using popular Xbox Live simulation Ralli Sport Challenge 2. All the households will use headsets to talk to each other during racing and Xbox race officials will manage the teams and logistics using MSN Instant Messenger

The households will be competing for bragging rights and the ultimate prize, to be New Zealand's Most Connected Household. There will also be points for the best dressed team, best wipe out and best action shot, all of which will be posted on the Connected Lives website www.connectedlives.co.nz so that the public can re-live the races and vote online for their favourite household.

Head of Xtra, Chris Thompson says the Xbox Live race provides an opportunity for the Connected Lives participants to experience the thrill of playing against each other online

"The popularity of online games is becoming a key driver for broadband take-up in this country", he says.

"The Connected Lives programme has already proven how people's lives can be enriched by broadband and technology. Xbox Live over Xtra broadband gives New Zealanders a new level of interactivity and entertainment.

"It's great to see that New Zealanders are taking part in a worldwide gaming phenomenon which allows people to play and talk to anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world. Gaming consoles such as Xbox Live, enable people to further develop their skills and confidence in using broadband and technology," he says.

ENDS

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