When he’s not pulling on the  Number 9 jersey for the Qantas Wallabies, scrum-half Nick Phipps is swotting for his Master of International Business degree and using modern technology to get lost in ancient civilisations.

What’s your latest technology purchase?
I bought a Kindle the other day. It’s my third, after losing two. I left one on a plane a couple of weeks ago. 

So you prefer e-books to real books?
I love the feel of a book but I read so much when travelling that I don’t like to finish a book and have it sitting around in my room. 

What books are you reading?
I’m into historical fiction at the moment. A few Roman Empire ones by Simon Scarrow.

Wi-fi or no wi-fi on the plane?
I’m happy with no wi-fi. I enjoy being disconnected for a little bit.

What apps do you use the most?
I’ve got all my life apps on there like my bank account. I’ve also got a few apps to keep in touch with friends and family, such as WhatsApp and Viber, and I’ve got Twitter and Instagram. Otherwise I have a few games like Sudoku and Risk and solitaire. 

Is there one form of social media you use more than the other?
I use Twitter (@Fanga9) and Instagram  (@fangsie) the most. It’s good to get connected and talk to people on the other side of the world. You can see what your friends are getting up to, it’s great.

Are your interests mainly sporting?
I follow a few surfers, such as Owen Wright, on Twitter and Instagram and there’s Man of Many Tastes [a men’s lifestyle blog] on Instagram, too.

Have you ever regretted a tweet?
Not yet but a lot of people have had bloopers out there. I’m pretty careful about it. 

Do you ever have technology-free time?
I charge my phone in the lounge room  so that when I go to bed it’s just to sleep  – not sitting up surfing the web all night or having a look at Twitter and Instagram. 

What do you dislike about technology?
I hate it when people are on their phones at meals or having a coffee. My four housemates and I have no phones at the table when we are out or even if we’re at home having dinner. It’s a strict rule with the punishment of washing up. It’s a way to sit down and have a good chinwag rather than being on your phone the whole time.

What technology do you covet?
I’m not into new trends in technology. I like it to be useful and something I desperately need or I’ll often hold off. If I had the luxury of getting a nice pair of speakers from Bose or something, that’d be nice. But I haven’t found anything I’m desperate for yet.

If you’re waiting in a long queue, how do  you generally pass the time?
I try to catch up on emails and texts  to friends who I’ve been a bit naughty  with and not replied to in a while. And  I try to do a few jobs. If I run out of jobs,  I play a few games.

What technology do you take on planes?
I take my MacBook and punch out a bit of uni work. I also take my Kindle and my noise-cancelling headphones. 

What brand are your headphones?
Samsung. They’re a good size, easy to carry.

What’s been the best technological invention?
The printing press. It’s the first point in time when knowledge was able to be passed on to people quickly and easily.  

The Qantas Wallabies kick off their 2015 campaign with a match against the Springboks on July 18 at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane. interview by di webster photographY by damian bennett

Image: Damian Bennett

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