A Galway company’s software is revolutionising the way in which companies interact with their customers on mobile phone apps.
The creators of Element Wave, NUI Galway graduates Dorothy Creaven of Clare and James Harkin of Galway, are riding crest of a wave, having recently scooped top prize in the Small Firms Awards.
Leaving aside the technological jargon, Element Wave software, like the best innovations, is simple.
Mobile phone apps are used by a multitude of businesses to connect with their customers but the problem with them is users lose interest in them and stop using them.
Ms Creaven explained that it costs companies between $1 and $5 (US Dollars) to get people to download apps onto their mobile phones.
The apps allow businesses to market and advertise their wares but also make direct sales – so if someone has downloaded you app, you want to make sure they keep using it.
The problem with apps is interest in them wanes – it’s a crowded market – and research shows that after three months, 80% of people will stop using apps, explains Ms Creaven.
That’s where Element Wave technology comes in.
Using a type of push-notification – where messages pop up to the user through the app, like a text message – businesses are able to communicate directly with their customers who have downloaded the app.
The GAA is among the company’s clients – football and hurling fans who attended Croke Park for the various All-Ireland finals over the past month experienced first-hand the technology.
Several thousand supporters in the vicinity of Croke Park – and who had downloaded the GAA app – were sent ‘welcome to Croke Park’ messages through the app.
Another one of its clients is a bus company in Spain. The bus company’s clients download the app so they can go in and check if their bus is on time – this Element Wave technology allows the bus company to message the user directly to inform them if the bus is on time or delay etcetera.
Another aspect of Element Wave is analytics and it allows companies to track the app usage of the mobile phone users. So, for example, it can track what time most users are online and tailor the messages accordingly.
“For example, Starbucks can use it to announce a deal at a certain store. They can send out notification of a special offer of a free doughnut with every coffee to everyone who has downloaded the app within a certain area,” she says.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
€900,000 for great outdoors
Government funding of almost €435,250 has been approved for the upgrade of the Western Way Trail – one of four Galway projects to share funding of €929,200 under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme this week.
Local Minister for State at the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton, said this vital investment is needed to ensure that the trail capitalises on the natural and historic beauty of the setting, and would prove extremely popular for visitors on the Wild Atlantic Way.
“This route has proved very popular for local and tourists alike with its natural beauty well-known to most people from the area,” the Galway TD said.
“This investment will result in significant improvements and will ensure that this wonderful facility is made accessible to an even greater number of people,” Minister Naughton noted.
“There has been large growth in the recreational tourism sector, and an increasing number of visitors to Ireland are particularly interested in walking, cycling and exploring natural settings and activities” the Minister said.
The scheme, which finances the development and maintenance of outdoor amenities such as greenways and walking trails, also sees The Walks in Loughrea receive €200,000 to upgrade the present route, with an additional €200,000 allocated to develop the Creggs Mountain walk, an element of the Beara – Breifne & Suck Valley Way.
And the Killarainy Woods trail in Moycullen, is being allocated €103,950 to enhance the route.
“The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme contributes to the Governments objective of strengthening rural economies,” said Minister Naughton.
“The objective of the Scheme is to provide funding for the development of new outdoor recreational infrastructure and for the necessary repair, enhancement or promotion of existing outdoor recreation infrastructure in rural Ireland,” added the Minister.
Galway medtech firm awarded €3.6m to develop revolutionary stroke treatment
A Galway medical device company is working with a consortium to help develop disruptive technology in the treatment of stroke – after it was awarded awarded €3.6m in funding.
Ceroflo is partnered on the project with manufacturing firm Advant Medical and the Medical and Engineering Technologies (MET) Centre at Atlantic Technological University (ATU).
Cereflo secured the funding on foot of its development of a revolutionary new type of stent technology that promises to be vastly more effective than existing treatments to treat Intracranial Atherosclerotic Disease (ICAD), a leading cause of stroke.
Up to 50% of strokes are caused by a build-up of plaque in an artery in the brain known as Intra-Cranial Atherosclerotic Disease (ICAD).
Pharmaceutical therapies aimed at reducing the stroke rate are currently deemed the most effective form of treatment for the condition but more than 20% of patients with significant ICAD still suffer recurring stroke within twelve months.
Technological solutions have so far proved sub-optimal, leaving this large population of patients with the ongoing risk of devastating strokes.
The Ceroflo SubMax Stent represents a game-changer in the treatment of ICAD as its shape and structure has been developed to suit the unique challenges of this disease.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
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Galway Science and Technology Festival’s breaks new record
More than 22,000 people attended last Sunday’s Galway Science and Technology Festival exhibition in the University of Galway – breaking all previous records.
Celebrating 25 years of STEM Education, the exhibition was the opening event for the two week annual Galway Science and Technology Festival, which is the largest event of its kind in Europe. It showcases Galway as the MedTech capital of Europe and a growing IT Hub, bringing science and technology to over 35,000 students in schools across Galway city and county. This year there will be over 200 STEM demonstrations, shows and workshops in 140 primary schools and 40 post-primary schools.
The exhibition was a hive of activity with 25 shows and hands-on workshops and over 80 demonstrations and interactive exhibitions created by sponsor companies and agencies, universities and schools. Families enjoyed 3D astronomy shows and learned how to extract DNA from a banana , saw parasites in VR, drove Valeos self-driving car using a mobile phone, visited the Teddy Bear hospital and the ever popular Doctor Bug introduced tarantulas, snakes and lizards to very excited children and much, much more. Medtronic’s Junior Hospital team engaged with families at their fantastic interactive series of stands in the Human Biology Building. Sue McGrath entertained with the Devastatingly Dramatic Climate Show and new to the Festival is Braintastic with their Non-Sense show exploring our senses.
The 2022 Galway Science & Technology Person of the Year Award was presented to Dr Enda O’Connell, Senior Technical Officer at University of Galway and Founding Director of ReelLIFE Science, a science video competition for schools and youth organisations in Ireland and N. Ireland, celebrating its tenth year, the competition encourages young people to engage with STEM, while developing their creativity and communication skills.
To mark the 25th year of the Festival, a special presentation was made to the Treacy Family in commemoration of the late Noel Treacy, Founding Patron of the Galway Science & Technology Festival. Mr Treacy continued to be a strong advocate for the Festival over the 25 years and his presence was greatly missed this year.
Anne Murray, Festival Manager said: “We were delighted to be back on campus at the University of Galway to celebrate and learn about the world around us. The attendance on the day reflected the value that families and the public place on this unique event and we were so glad to be able to honour the memory of the late Noel Treacy who always said it started with an idea”.