Press

Buzz Interactive’s work is often covered in the press, here are just a few of the articles.

Invest in Cornwall

The eHealth Sector in Cornwall
Invest in Cornwall

Watch our video about the thriving eHealth technology business sector in Cornwall, the south west of England. Includes great tech innovations from companies such as BT Cornwall, Buzz Interactive and Ultramed.

Cornwall is a great place to relocate your tech business or idea, due to Superfast Cornwall, 1 council, LEP and NHS means less red tape for testing and funding streams may be available. Cornwall also has a great work life balance, so it's the perfect place to relocate to. 

Features the Health and Well Being Innovation Centre in Truro. 

Video produced by Studio Wallop.

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme

Cornwall Council
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Programme

More than £3m of European Regional Development Funding which helped create the European Centre for Environment and Human Health has sparked innovative research which is changing lives in Cornwall and around the world.

The investment, which created the centre in Truro, was made to provide a focus for the development of internationally relevant research on the threats, benefits and consequences of the environment and its impact on human health. One of the research projects which has come from the centre has not only helped the lives of many patients but has also identified a potentially significant international business opportunity.

Dr Jess Tyrrell of the University of Exeter has led research into the little known Meniere's disease. Meniere's is an inner ear disorder which affects one in 1,000 people. It is very unpredictable for sufferers of the disease which can lead to vertigo, tinnitus, hearing loss and a feeling of pressure deep inside the ear yet factors that exacerbate the condition were unknown, until now.

Working in collaboration with Newquay based Buzz Interactive, a company that specialises in website design and application development, the project created an application that allowed Meniere’s sufferers to record the severity of each symptom and whether individuals experienced an attack (symptom spike that incapacitates the individual). This was a first venture for Buzz Interactive into e-Health.

European Regional Development Fund Convergence

Buzz Interactive
European Regional Development Fund Convergence

Coaching for growth leaves tech firm buzzing

Buzz Interactive, which specialises in the creation of websites, mobile apps and games, has grown from four employees to seven and to accommodate the expanding team the firm has moved in to new premises at Mount Wise.

Company owner Lindsey Axten said the Coaching for High Growth programme, delivered across Cornwall by business coaching specialists Oxford Innovation, had been integral to Buzz Interactive’s recent success, commenting:  “The company was already performing well through winning new work as well as repeat business from existing clients.  However by participating in the programme we’re now much better able to manage and sustain growth.

“We’ve significantly increased turnover and with support from our Oxford Innovation business coaches we’ve been able to build a growth strategy around our balance sheet.  This meant that when we hired our sixth employee to meet increased client demand we realised that actually, we could afford to take on a seventh immediately and see it as an investment in the long-term future of the business.”

Lindsey launched Buzz Interactive in 2006 having seen a gap in the market for a firm that underpins eye-catching creativity with technological expertise.  The company’s client base was initially from Cornwall and it now extends across the UK having produced work for the Department for Work & Pensions, the Natural History Museum and the company behind popular television series, Time Team.

Oxford Innovation’s Tony Everett has provided support to Lindsey and her team for over a year and he added:  “Buzz Interactive is a great example of an enterprise that does what it does very well indeed however in order to realise its full growth potential the team needed to work on the business as well as in it.  The business continues to provide first class technology solutions to clients but now Lindsey and her team combine their expertise with a structured plan that will enable them to sustain long-term growth.”

Having participated in the Coaching for High Growth programme, Lindsey said she would recommend it to other businesses in Cornwall, commenting:  “The coaching we have received has added so much value to our business.  Tony is a truly inspirational business coach and he has become a highly trusted friend to the team.”

The Coaching for High Growth programme is funded by ERDF (the European Regional Development Fund).  Since it was launched in 2009 the programme has supported more than 600 Cornish businesses.

Anyone wishing to find out more about Oxford Innovation and the Coaching for High Growth programme should visit www.growcornwall.co.uk or email cornwall@oxin.co.uk.

Insider Media Ltd

Buzz Interactive
Insider Media Ltd

Tech Firm Relocates Cornwall Base

A South West tech firm has relocated its Cornwall base with support from NatWest in a move that could create jobs at the company.

Buzz Interactive was set up in 2006 to develop website, apps and games for clients across Cornwall. It secured a commercial mortgage with NatWest on a larger property in Newquay after its seven-strong team outgrew its original headquarters.

The business said the relocation from its former one-room office would allow it to take on additional staff.

Project director Lindsey Axten said: "We offer global quality made in Newquay. We attract the best, most highly-skilled staff and we want to keep them, and having a really good working environment will help with that.

"The new property is a double-fronted Victorian townhouse and our offices are on the ground floor. We have a large studio, two meeting rooms and a staff room, and there is parking for the staff. We also have a stunning sea view, which is an added bonus."

Darren Lewarne, relationship manager at NatWest, added: "I was delighted to have been able to have supported Buzz Interactive by helping them to achieve their ambitions to move to their new premises.

"I'm looking forward to seeing this business grow even further."

Mobile Nations

Dopey and the Meteors
Mobile Nations

Have a kid that likes to play with your Windows Phone device? Here’s a game they might like. Check out Dopey and the Meteors. You play as Dopey the Dinosaur who needs to escape the meteor shower. The game is based on Dopey Dinosaur books, which were created in the 1980s.

The goal is to make your way through themed levels, avoiding the obstacles, and grabbing as much fruit as you can to keep Dopey’s energy up. Dopey is moving automatically. He’s mostly on a skateboard. You just need to jump, duck, or thwack bushes out of the way. You jump by tapping on the right side of the screen. Pressing and holding on the left makes Dopey crouch down. Tapping the right side of the screen while in the air makes Dopey spin and hit bushes away with the tail.

If Dopey trips or hits an obstacle, the energy level decreases a little bit and you continue playing. We think it should decrease a lot more to make the game more difficult. The game ends when the energy level runs out and the high score gets recorded.

Dopey Dinosaur is a little character brought to life by children's author and illustrator Mike Higgs in the 1980's. The following original Dopey Dinosaur titles include:

  • Dopey Dinosaur
  • Dopey Dinosaur and the Storm
  • Dopey Dinosaur and the Dragon
  • Dopey Dinosaur flies high
  • Dopey Dinosaur lost in the fog
  • Dopey Dinosaur plays in a band
  • Dopey Dinosaur underground
  • Dopey Dinosaur and the big baby
  • Dopey Dinosaur goes to school
  • Dopey Dinosaur in the desert
  • Dopey Dinosaur by the sea
  • Dopey Dinosaur in Winter

Dopey and the Meteors costs 99 cents at the Windows Phone Store. Currently, there’s no free trial available. Is this something you or your kids would play? Let us know in the comments!

European Centre for Environment & Human Health

Ménière's Monitor
European Centre for Environment & Human Health

A revolutionary research initiative in Cornwall is using mobile technology to transform the treatment of a rare and poorly understood condition.

Bringing together the region’s leading academic and digital experts, the project is shedding light on how the symptoms of Ménière’s Disease can be mitigated and managed.

Ménière’s is an inner ear condition that profoundly affects the hearing and balance of around 160,000 people in the UK, yet there are large gaps in our understanding of how the disease is triggered and develops.

In a bid to transform how we treat this chronic illness, the University of Exeter Medical School has partnered with Cornish digital company,Buzz Interactive, to develop a mobile application that can record symptoms on a daily basis.

The team are creating a database of information on the disease to help in their analysis and are feeding results straight back to sufferers – empowering them to manage their own symptoms more effectively.

“Working with Buzz Interactive has meant that our application hasn’t just been beneficial to researchers, but has also become a really useful tool for patients.”
Cornwall boasts a burgeoning and innovative digital technology sector and working closely with the region’s private sector on co-created projects is changing the landscape of scientific research. Dr Jessica Tyrrell has led the Ménière’s study and believes its collaborative design has been essential to its success:

“Working with Buzz Interactive has meant that our application hasn’t just been beneficial to researchers, but has also become a really useful tool for patients. It gives them unique feedback on how their condition is changing and has allowed us to recruit and retain large numbers of participants. Without Buzz’s insight, that’s something that almost certainly wouldn’t have featured.”

Linking the mobile app with weather information from the UK Met Office, the research is also hoping to uncover associations between Ménière’s and meteorological conditions, a move that could see the tool used to send out early warning messages to people.

The collaboration has proved pivotal for Buzz Interactive, giving them invaluable experience in eHealth and spring-boarding their expansion into the health and wellbeing sector. Lindsey Axten, Director at Buzz, said:
“As a result of our work with the University of Exeter, Buzz is now well positioned to make a move into the eHealth sector. Our success with the Ménière’s application has highlighted how technology can improve patient health and wellbeing, and we’re really proud to be playing an integral role in this kind of collaborative research.”

By involving patients and participants in the way the tool is developed, this project has also had a profound effect on the people taking part. Gerald Pitts has suffered from Ménière’s for 6 years and believes the study has given hope to sufferers of the condition:

“When I was first diagnosed with Ménière’s I felt incredibly isolated. Being part of this project has allowed me to feed into the design of the application and offered hope that we’ll be able to improve our understanding of this chronic illness, and give people some quality of life back.”

Invest In Cornwall

Ménière's Monitor
Invest In Cornwall

Buzz Interactive’s client base is varied and nationally spread and includes the National Trust, Rodda’s, Natural History Museum and Time Team from the Channel 4 TV series.

Recently Buzz worked with the University of Exeter Medical School who partnered with the Cornish digital company to develop a mobile application that can record symptoms of a particular medical condition on a daily basis.

Buzz created the app for Ménière’s, an inner ear condition which profoundly affects the hearing and balance of around 160,000 people in the UK, yet there are large gaps in our understanding of how the disease is triggered and develops – and how it impacts on patient’s lives.

In a bid to transform how we treat this chronic illness, the team is creating a database of information on the disease to help in their analysis and is feeding results straight back to sufferers – empowering them to manage their own symptoms more effectively.

Cornwall boasts a burgeoning and innovative digital technology sector and working closely with the region’s private sector on co-created projects is changing the landscape of scientific research. Dr Jessica Tyrrell, of University of Exeter Medical School, has led the Ménière’s study and believes its collaborative design has been essential to its success:

“Working with Buzz Interactive has meant that our application hasn’t just been beneficial to researchers, but has also become a really useful tool for patients. It gives them unique feedback on how their condition is changing and has allowed us to recruit and retain large numbers of participants. Without Buzz’s insight, that’s something that almost certainly wouldn’t have featured.”

Linking the mobile app with weather information from the UK Met Office, the research is also hoping to uncover associations between Ménière’s and meteorological conditions, a move that could see the tool used to send out early warning messages to people.

The collaboration has proved pivotal for Buzz Interactive, giving them invaluable experience in eHealth and spring-boarding their expansion into the health and well-being sector. Lindsey Axten, Director at Buzz, said:

“As a result of our work with the University of Exeter, Buzz is now well positioned to further expand our work in the eHealth sector. Our success with the Ménière’s Monitor app has highlighted how technology can improve patient health and wellbeing, and we’re really proud to be playing an integral role in this kind of collaborative research.”

By involving patients and participants in the way the tool is developed, this project has also had a profound effect on the people taking part. Gerald Pitts has suffered from Ménière’s for six years and believes the study gives hope to sufferers of the condition:

“When I was first diagnosed with Ménière’s, I felt incredibly isolated. Being part of this project has allowed me to feed into the design of the application and offered hope that we’ll be able to improve our understanding of this chronic illness, and give people some quality of life back.”

Western Morning News

Time Team
Western Morning News

Time Team fans from across the world are digging into the hit archeology series' archives, through a website developed by a Newquay-based IT company.

Buzz Interactive was approached by Time Team creator and producer Tim Taylor to develop the newly-launched online platform – timeteamdigital.com.

The website took about three months to build and showcases a large archive of videos and special moments from the programme's most memorable digs. It also has an e-commerce shop, a members-only area and live Twitter and Facebook feeds.

Buzz director Lindsey Axten said: "Tim had seen a project we'd been working on for the Natural History Museum and decided he'd like to meet us.

"That led to my fellow director Paul and I joining Time Team on a public dig in Oxfordshire. It was freezing cold but absolutely fascinating as we spent two days helping the archaeologists at every stage. It was a very useful experience that has really helped with what we've been doing with them since."

Buzz web and app developer Keith Ravens said: "Our aim was to create something that was easy to navigate and access.

"The Time Team works to a very strict three day timetable on digs , so we've used a similar timeline principle."

Tim Taylor said: "Buzz has created a superb platform on which we can build better communication links with worldwide fans of the show and all those passionate about archaeology. It's very exciting."

Buzz, which has a core team of five, is set to continue working with Mr Taylor on the Time Team website, which has a facility to broadcast coverage of ongoing digs as they happen, live. It has also been helping him as he lays the foundations for a new archeology-inspired media project, Dig Village. The concept will be officially launched in the new year.

As a web, mobile apps and game development company, Buzz has worked for other high profile national organisations and broadcasters, as well as local and regional businesses including Rodda's, Inspired Cycle Engineering, Bott Ltd and the National Trust.

WithinTheGame

Switchblaze
WithinTheGame

Hey guys, so following my first review of Gunplay (Check it out here) I was contacted by Buzz Interactive, who are based in the beautiful land of Cornwall, close to home for myself. They have developed an IOS puzzle game called SwitchBlaze which I thought I would have a play around with on behalf of all you dedicated Apple users out there.

SwitchBlaze is a simplistic, fast-paced puzzle game in which the player must transfer blocks from one side to the other to match up lines of the appropriate colours, clear the coloured blocks and score points accordingly.

Now my first impression of SwitchBlaze was ‘this is just another puzzle game’, however I very quickly became a SwitchBlaze convert and found myself screaming in frustrated amusement as I fumbled with my thumbs. I saw myself become addicted within minutes of playing and constantly striving to top my high score. Even my girlfriend decided to have a go, and ended up crushing my attempts and walking all over my own score (To my silent irritation). SwitchBlaze is an extremely simple yet fun little puzzle game to play, and I can imagine it would be perfect to have on ones mobile device for those long and tedious train journeys or when waiting for an appointment.

One downside to the game is the fact that visually, it is rather unexciting. It is also rather confusing to figure out how to work the controls at first due to the wordless help screen. It was only after playing through a few games when I realised that you don’t actually have to slide the pieces of the puzzle across the screen, you only have to hold them down to make them function, and due to this I felt the controls were quite sloppy and unresponsive. After I figured this out however I had absolutely no issues and found the game even more enjoyable due to the fact that I had worked out how to fully control it. I feel like a bit more interaction between developer and player is needed in regards to instruction and reward.

 

As I mentioned before, visually the game is extremely simple. I believe that there are some kind of score multipliers in effect whilst playing SwitchBlaze and there is also a slight flashing visual used to indicate when the timer is almost up. Now the mechanics of this game are the main points that give it that addictive fun factor, and Buzz Interactive have got the gameplay spot on in that respect. A bit more excitement on-screen would help this game to become a graphically beautiful addiction as well as just a way to get that satisfaction of smashing your high score, even if it was just a more obvious indication of what is actually happening whilst you play.

The music intensifies the high speed and tense atmosphere that SwitchBlaze brings to the player, and you really get a rush when the timer is almost up and you get a few more lines down. It’s a great little game and it wasn’t majorly easy to find flaws whilst playing. With a little bit of visual development I feel like this game could go very far and could easily be the next Candy Crush.

How easy was it for me to get WITHIN the game? Really easy! I was hooked after the first few games, and if I had an iPhone it would genuinely be a game I’d enjoy playing whilst on work breaks and travelling. I would definitely recommend this for literally anyone as it’s really easy to enjoy. If you get satisfaction from high score chasing then this game will be perfect for you.

If you guys want to play the game then you can find it here, or just search ‘SwitchBlaze’ on the IOS app store. Would be nice to see the game released on Android also, but time will tell. :)

Western Morning News

Sofadodger
Western Morning News

Sam's Sofa Dodger will help you find keep-fit activities on your doorstep
 

Fancy getting fit, but have no idea what’s on offer in your neck of the woods?

Entrepreneur Sam Taylor from Cardinham, near Bodmin has launched and is set to roll out Sofa Dodger, an online guide listing local activity providers that are within a five mile postcode search of your living room.

While there may be many sports clubs and fitness classes taking place in leisure centres, playing fields, church halls and community centres locally, it can still be hard for members of the public to find out what’s on where and for activity providers on limited budgets to broadly market what’s on offer.

And as member of Bodmin Hockey Club, Ms Taylor knew how difficult it could be for amateur sports groups, with limited time and budgets, to market themselves.

 

Inspired by this, she set out to create her own online database, sofadodger.com, which just six weeks after its launch has 1,000 Cornwall sports and keep fit clubs and classes signed up and listed.

Activity providers and users can access the site for free, with her business generating its income from advertising and promotional tie-ins.

Ms Taylor, who for the past 10-years has run an e-commerce venture selling camcorder accessories with her partner Paul Brown, began developing the sofadodger.com concept in December 2012.

Working on the feasibility of her business plan, Ms Taylor created a database of 50,000 UK sports centres and clubs, to approach and commissioned Newquay-based Buzz Interactive to develop the website.

Users can search for something to do locally by keying in their postcode and refine their search by age, gender, or preferred venue.

The site also features an “I’m attending” button, which allows people to tell their friends on social media that they are going to a particular class or session.

With support after joining the ERDF-funded Oxford Innovation Coaching for High Growth programme, Ms Taylor successfully bid for a £30,000 EU-funded Business Investment for Growth grant, to put towards her undisclosed start-up costs.

The mother of three under 12s said: “The selling point was the concept: I’d identified a need and developed a solution for that need; finding information in one place about what’s going on, where and when.”

The mother of three under-12s added: “I’m very much looking to target parents, as they’ll often sit down before a holiday and think what’s going on in the area.

“I’ve been frustrated when the local leisure centre has lots of great activities, but there are only a few kids there. It can be frustrating finding the information in the first place, due to limited marketing.”

Ms Taylor is currently building up the website by contacting venues and organisations listed on her 50,000 strong data-base, prior to launching the site nationwide in the next few weeks.

She added: “I have worked hard to ensure the site is easy for those providing activities as well as those looking for things to do.”

Oxford Innovation coach David Prior said: “Sam approached SofaDoger in exactly the right way, by focusing on the user experience and working backwards.

“As a result, she has developed a site that is very user friendly. I think the future looks very exciting for Sam.”

Fowey Community College

App Ideas
Fowey Community College

Year 9 students from Fowey Community College are using their knowledge of mobile technology to create App concepts with Newquay-based development company Buzz Interactive.

As part of a school IT project, the students were required to research the market and develop their own Apps for iPhones, iPads or Android phones. Jasmine, 13, says: “We got to create our own design and produce something that is relevant to real life. We also had free rein with our ideas.”

The results were so good that Mrs Fletcher got in touch with Buzz and sent the best ideas to Lindsey Axten, Project Director for review. Sophie, 13, says: “I am a perfectionist so knowing that a real design company was looking at the idea created a bit of pressure.”

Buzz’s Lindsey provided constructive written feedback for every student on their proposals, covering the design, content, features and proposed retail value of each App.  She says: “I was really impressed, not only by the students’ ideas for their apps, but also by their language and obvious grasp of what apps can be used for.

“Hopefully some of these students will be the app designers and programmers, and project managers, of the future.”

Business Cornwall

Sue Bradbury PR
Business Cornwall

PR’s brand new look

The SBPR team (l-r): Jessica Wright, Sarah Cockcroft, Sue Bradbury and Bernie Pettersen
A Cornish PR agency has celebrated its eleventh year in business with a new look and website.

Since establishing in early 2000, Sue Bradbury PR (SBPR) has successfully worked with a range of different clients over the years including the Skills Funding Agency, the National Apprenticeship Service, Flambards, Truro High School and Western United Mines, owner of South Crofty.

A new brand image was developed by Adrian Toms at Nine Design, working through Buzz Interactive – a Newquay-based company which created the website. Each of SBPR’s clients now have their own pages and popular social media tools Twitter and Facebook are both used, in addition to more traditional communication channels, to disseminate news.

Director Sue Bradbury said: “The new website has been developed to help service their [client] needs as well as ours and, judging by the feedback we’ve received, everyone is as happy with it as we are.”

Dopey Dinosaur Ltd

Dopey and the Meteors
Dopey Dinosaur Ltd

“It’s neat, the music’s cute and the graphics are lovely. Kids and grown-ups will love it.”
Joel Williams, Editor of Connects

The very first copy of Dopey Dinosaur and the Meteors game, which launched in April 2014, was downloaded by lucky seven-year-old Sam Axten from Cornwall, whose uncle helped develop the app at Buzz Interactive.

“The game is really cool.  He builds a skateboard and then races around on it,” enthused Sam.  “I like the bit when Dopey windsurfs across the lake!”

Along with the new game, the team behind Dopey Dinosaur have also created a new website as part of the launch, which offers loads of dinosaur-themed fun and games for children and parents to enjoy offline.

“Who doesn’t love dinosaurs?  They’re exciting, dangerous, unpredictable and so different from animals we see around today,” explained Buzz Interactive’s Lindsey Axten.  “Dopey in a playful little character and we’ve had great fun bringing him to life and watching his adventures expand.  The extra activities and downloads on the website give fans the chance to bring Dopey into the games they play together when they’re not on the app and the feedback has been amazing.”

Dopey and the Meteors is available exclusively now on the Window 8 Phone and will be launched on Android and Apple in the Summer.

European Centre for Environment & Human Health

Ménière's Monitor
European Centre for Environment & Human Health

A new mobile app has been launched this week to help researchers develop a better understanding of a rare condition affecting the inner ear.

The tool will allow sufferers of Ménière’s Disease to log details about their symptoms and see how they compare with people across the country.

Ménière’s Disease affects roughly 160,000 people in the UK and can cause tinnitus, hearing loss, vertigo and a feeling of pressure deep inside the ear. But reasons for why people develop the condition, and how symptoms occur, remain unclear.

The study is being carried out by researchers at the European Centre and is working closely with Cornish digital company Buzz Interactive, who have helped to develop the app.

The team are hoping to understand what factors influence the symptoms of Ménière’s, and discover if people across the country experience similar complaints at the same time. They are also hoping to use several different types of data to understand how environmental factors, such as air pressure and humidity, can impact symptoms.

Long term Ménière’s sufferer Gerald Pitts welcomed the research, saying “It can be a very unpredictable condition that makes everyday life difficult. One minute you can be functioning well, the next the whole room is spinning round and you have no idea what set it off. Understanding episodes like this will help me – and others with the condition – to prepare for times when symptoms might worsen.

Research lead, Dr Jess Tyrrell, said “By collecting data on a daily basis this project will provide the crucial first step in understanding the variable nature of Ménière’s. We hope this will be good news for those diagnosed with the condition, removing some of the anxiety associated with the ‘unknowns’ that trigger attacks.”

This study builds on existing research into the disease at the Centre, which has considered the occurrence of Ménière’s in the UK population.

Natasha Harrington-Benton, Director of the Meniere’s Society said “This new mobile phone app will be a really useful tool to help our members monitor their condition, providing information that could help them manage their symptoms. It’s fantastic that it will also further our understanding of a disease which has received comparatively little scientific attention.”

You can take part in the research if you’re over 18, have been diagnosed with Ménière’s disease by your doctor, and have experienced symptoms – such as vertigo or tinnitus – in the last year.

Participants will need a smart phone or tablet, be happy for location data to be captured, and willing to input brief information about their symptoms each day.

The Monitoring Ménière’s app can be downloaded from the Apple app store or the Android store

More information on the app can be found here

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