Lineal Software Solutions Ltd. recently welcomed Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid MP to Lineal’s Barnstaple Offices to tour our operations and see our technical work.
Visiting with North Devon’s new MP Selaine Saxby, Mr Javid toured Lineal’s different departments and had chance to meet technical staff in a number of different roles (and enjoy a cream tea!)
Considered one of the most senior Cabinet positions, the Chancellor is responsible for financial and economic matters at the Treasury. A former Managing Director at Deutsche Bank, MP for Bromsgrove, Culture Secretary and then Business Secretary, Javid is the first British Asian to hold one of the Great Offices of State.
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Mike Matthews, Lineal’s Managing Director explained: “We’re delighted to be shortlisted for the Tech South West awards – it’s a real recognition of our team’s hard work, creativity and dedication to be ranked among the best in the region.”
“2018-19 has been really quite something for Lineal. We’ve opened new premises, taken on bigger projects than ever before, expanded our product offering to new areas, and signed a diverse range of new clients.”
“It’s fantastic to make it through to the final round of this prestigious award.”
Tech South West exists to champion excellence among tech companies, and make the South West a hub for technology and innovation.
The awards will be presented in a special ceremony at Exeter Castle on Wednesday 27th November – a full shortlist of nominees and categories has been published on Tech South West’s website, here.
Lineal have launched Lineal Business Mobile at the 2019 North Devon Show.
The annual North Devon Show, for which Lineal is a proud Sponsor, receives around 20,000 visitors each year. In addition to all the agricultural, culinary, craft, entertainment and community highlights of North Devon, visitors to the show might also have spotted Moby, Lineal’s Business Mobile Mascot.
Mike Matthews, Lineal’s Managing Director explained: “We’ve provided fixed-line business telecoms for a wide variety of local firms, but increasingly customers have asked us to deliver business mobile services too. We felt that the time was right, and we’re delighted to be able to add this to our extensive range of IT, software and communications services.”
“With attractive packages for unlimited business mobile voice minutes, unlimited SMS and Data bundles, – and even UK network-hopping SIM technology – we’re certain Lineal Business Mobile will be a popular option for businesses across the South West.”
Visitors to the show also undertook our retro Space-Invaders Challenge for the second year running, with a live Microsoft PowerBI ‘Highscore’ dashboard visualising the best arcade skills on display at the show! Congratulations to Martin P. from Barnstaple, who achieved the best highscore (1390) of this year’s challenge.
Despite uncertain weather at first, North Devon Show 2019 was a great success – see you next year!
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Staff and volunteers from Lineal Software Solutions Ltd. and TM Fitness have raised £500 for North Devon Hospice’s Pitch-in-a-Pound day.
The annual Pitch-in-a-Pound Day, supported by businesses and fundraisers across North Devon, raises funds for the vital work of the former Charity of the Year, which cares for more than 3,000 people affected by life-limiting illnesses each year.
With help from TM Fitness gym in Barnstaple, Lineal staff ran, walked and rowed a total of 100 miles in relay, and raffled-off healthy fruit basket prizes to raise funds.
Lineal’s Managing Director Mike Matthews thanked all those who donated, volunteered or helped:
“This important charity has cared for somebody from so many local families, across more than 800 square miles. The organisation and its staff rightly hold a special place in the heart of the local community for its good work.”
“That’s why, for the second year running, we decided to match whatever Lineal staff raised on the day, bringing the total tom £500. Well done team!”
Thank you to everyone who volunteered, donated or helped with pitch-in-a-pound this year! You can still sponsor our appeal via our JustGiving by clicking here or learn more about North Devon Hospice by clicking here.
Team Lineal have raised £250 for North Devon Hospice, after hosting a fundraising buffet for staff and visitors.
The donations were collected by the IT Support firm as part of the local charity’s ‘Pitch in a Pound’ day, held each year in support of the hospice by North Devon businesses, schools and community groups.
Managing Director Mike Matthews explained: “It’s hard to find anyone in North Devon who doesn’t have a friend or family member who has been cared for by this terrific local charity, and it’s important every business does its bit for worthy causes.”
“That’s why I agreed I would match whatever my team raised on the day. Well done to all involved!”
North Devon hospice, which covers more than 800 sq. miles of Northern Devon, supports and cares for more than 3000 patients with life-limiting illness each year.
Lineal staff cooked, baked and sold a variety of sweet and savory food, including curry, pastries, chilli, samosas, dips, and a whole variety of different cakes and sweet treats.
Learn more about ‘Pitch in a Pound’ day on North Devon Hospice’s website by clicking here.
North Devon IT support and software company, Lineal Software Solutions Ltd, has celebrated 30 years’ success in business.
First founded in 1988, our company, which supports businesses and organisations across the UK and beyond with a range of IT services, are preparing to move to larger offices in central Barnstaple in the Spring.
Managing Director Mike Matthews thanked staff past and present for all their hard work over the last 30 years:
“Technology (and hairstyles) have changed considerably since 1988, but for us the best is yet to come. I’m proud that during that time, we’ve played a role in the success of some of North Devon’s best-known companies.”
We have doubled in size in the last two years, now employing over 20 locally-based staff who work in IT support and software development on behalf of other businesses and organisations across the UK and, increasingly, overseas.
Lineal also now includes staff from disability social enterprise Pluss, apprentices and degree apprentices, training in cooperation with Petroc.
The company has been recognised as one of the South West’s few Microsoft Gold Partners, helped to launch the Barnstaple Town Centre Wi-Fi project, and is part of DigitalND – a new group designed to promote digital connectivity and skills in North Devon.
Mike added: “The South West still has important connectivity and IT skills challenges to address, but public internet access didn’t even exist thirty years ago. Now the small company we originally started in my back room supports trusted clients as far afield as Australia. Ten Years from now? Watch this space.”
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Lineal Software Solutions have won the prize for ‘The Most Unusually Decorated Tree’ in the Arlington Church Christmas tree decorating contest 2017.
Lineal’s tree decoration, an eclectic mix of technology, gold and glitter, took the prize for ‘Most Unusually Decorated Tree’ against, tough competition from more than 30 other trees decorated by other local organisations.
The annual Arlington competition is held to raise funds for community’s Church Roof Fund, using trees kindly donated by Mole Valley Farmers, and is judged by vicar of the Parish, Rosie Austin.
Executive Tree Decorator and little elf, Sarah Allsobrook explained: “We were absolutely delighted with our prize and we think it’s important Lineal does its bit for local charitable causes.”
John Lewis, M&S and Harrods have not yet to confirmed whether the highly-exclusive, prize-winning IT-themed decorations will be available to the public in time for Christmas 2018.
The success of Lineal’s imaginative arboreal design department was announced by Managing Director Mike Matthews, at Lineal’s annual Christmas Dinner, along with the formal presentation of the winners’ certificate.
Congratulations to Sarah and Huma on their award-winning decorations!
Appledore’s intrepid U14 pilot gig crew have won the coveted 2017 Lineal Shield.
Sponsored by Lineal, the annual youth competition is just one race among the men’s, women’s and youth events held between local gig clubs as part of the annual North Devon Pilot Gig Club Regatta in Barnstaple.
This year’s winning youth team had to contend with the hot sunshine of an August Bank holiday on the river Taw, completing the traditional 1-mile sprint race which finishes by Barnstaple’s Longbridge, just outside Lineal’s riverfront offices, at a record pace.
Fans and supporters lined the Barnstaple quayside to cheer on the local gig races, including the winning Appledore boat, the Whitford.
Signalling from the quarterdeck of his event camera-boat the ‘Red Baron’, Lineal’s naval correspondent and Managing Director Mike Matthews congratulated the young team on their success:
“This is the second year of the Lineal Shield competition, and it was fantastic to see the Appledore team win the trophy in spectacular fashion. It’s important we do everything we can to support youth sport.”
“Congratulations to all the excellent local teams who took part in this year’s brilliant community event. I’m off to the pub.”
Lineal are proud of our role investing in skills and people, and our growing office now includes two talented new apprentices looking to develop their technical know-how.
Apprenticeships provide a vital way for trainee staff to develop specialist industry skills, highly-sought after by employers, at an early age.
In the second of our recent ‘new faces’ features, we welcome these two new valuable members of our IT Support team:
Lewis joins our IT support team from Petroc as our first ‘Degree Apprentice’, pursuing education and training in tandem. He’ll join our main IT support team on the frontline to help resolve customers’ IT queries and help improve their system security.
Focused on security in particular, Lewis has even demonstrated Lineal’s ability track email fraudsters, and aims to become a cyber-security specialist.
Luke joins us an Apprentice to support Lineal’s workshop – expanding our ability to turn around repairs more quickly, and deliver more ambitious hardware and cabling projects, both in-house and on-site.
Always hands-on with technology, Luke previously worked for one of North Devon’s best known retail companies before pursuing a new career with Lineal.
The scheme aims to provide an alternative for those in rural and other remote locations, who receive speeds of less than 2Mbps and are excluded from the Government’s fibre-optic broadband rollout, to access faster broadband.
Lineal’s experienced engineers can use a combination of the latest fixed wireless technology, much like that used in the Barnstaple Town Centre WiFi project, to provide more challenging locations with better connectivity. A typical installation, location permitting, costs £390 (+VAT), and includes a discrete antenna and router for your property or business. Once installed, faster Broadband from Lineal is available from £12 per month (+VAT.)
New data has suggested the South West is among the worst regions in the UK for poor quality 3G / 4G mobile signal.
Research by OpenSignal, in a pioneering coverage study using data crowdsourced from phones across the UK, reported the South West as among the worst three scoring regions for both 3G and 4G mobile signal availability (alongside Wales & Scotland). All three regions reported 3G availability below 80%.
Average 3G speeds of 11.48Mbps also placed the South West as one of the slowest in the UK, although 4G speeds were significantly better, possibly reflecting less intensive usage by comparison to urban areas.
Indeed, high availability of 4G signal in London appears to have resulted in the worst average speeds in the UK at under 19Mbps. OpenSignal attribute this shortfall to ’higher levels of congestion’ from data hungry users accustomed to reliable 4G signals.
Unreliable mobile signal availability and slow speeds presents serious challenges to those needing to work remotely or overly-reliant on cloud-based services for business continuity, although the study notes that some networks have significant plans to boost capacity.
For now, businesses in the South West seeking more reliable signals for mobile working should consider the installation of enterprise-grade signal boosters (available for both buildings and vehicles) or the much anticipated release of cost-effective ‘Multi-net’ on the new Gamma Mobile platform: permitting business phone users to automatically jump networks to help obtain signal, at no extra cost.
For unified communications expertise and support, contact Lineal today: 01271 375999
“As a local business, Lineal are always pleased to be able to attend the North Devon Show” explained Lineal’s managing director Mike Matthews: “the huge variety of enthusiastic local firms and organisations exhibiting here always make the day a success, and there’s always something new to see.”
Two days of rain beforehand didn’t dampen spirits, and the show itself was sunny and well attended by thousands of both North Devon locals and tourists to the area.
It’s that time of year again – when we ask you how we’ve been doing, and what Lineal can do to improve the quality of our technical support.
Firstly, a big thank you to those of you with kind words to say about members of our IT help desk. Our team found your kind comments to be enormously supportive and it’s good to know that so many of our customers value the contribution of their account manager so highly.
83% of you felt we met the technology needs of small to medium size businesses ‘Well’ or ‘Very Well’, and 89% felt we understood your IT queries ‘Very Well’ or ‘Extremely Well.’ Overall, 85% of you rated our customer support ‘Good’ or ‘Great.’
We weren’t perfect however – some of you felt we’d been slower to respond to certain emails and call-backs recently, and we’re putting in place new measures to address this: we’ll be adding to our team in coming weeks to help manage our responsibilities to our ever-growing number of IT support clients, and to ensure clearer communication between our team and customers during ongoing project work.
Your comments included an insightful mix of both praise and constructive criticism which we’re reviewing carefully – but here were a few of our favourites:
“A good “local” company. Always on hand.”
“As a small organisation of mainly non IT literate users Lineal staff always respond to queries in language we understand and without making us feel stupid!”
“Would like to thank Martyn especially, and dealing with mostly one person simplifies things.”
Thank you to everyone who gave us their feedback, it will inform our future decision making and help us provide a high quality of customer support.
We hope that the juniors’ contest for the new shield will become a regular feature of the annual regatta, and that the competitions will grow to get more young people involved in local sport.
In addition to sponsoring the shield, Lineal’s Managing Director and resident sports reporter Mike Matthews provided live action photography of the men’s, women’s and junior races from aboard Lineal’s mobile camera boat: ‘The Red Baron!’
Congratulations to all the teams on a fantastic event.
Congratulations to Lineal’s George Ward, who has won a Petroc award, in recognition of his improvement over the past year.
Apprentice George will become 2014-15 academic year’s proud recipient of the local higher education college’s ‘Most Improved Student’ award from the Department of Leadership and Higher Technical Skills Awards Evening, sponsored by North Devon Orthodontic Centre.
The prize-giving ceremony was held on Wednesday 23rd March at the Barnstaple Hotel.
Mobile phone coverage across the UK may be about to improve, with mobile operator O2 seeking a controversial merger with rival Three.
The £10.25bn deal looks set to merge coverage patterns, potentially providing shared coverage to customers of either network in more rural areas, and comes just two weeks after BT took similar ownership of EE, the UK’s single biggest mobile operator.
Of course, whilst consumers may be set to enjoy improved signal from shared infrastructure, this may come at greater expense. Both the European Commission and Ofcom have raised numerous monopoly fears about the merger, arguing that fewer than four mobile providers in the UK risks less competitive pricing for customers.
Three’s parent company, CK Hutchinson, has attempted to counter by promising in a public letter to the Financial Times that prices will not increase for at least five years.
Unlike in many other EU countries, the UK does not enjoy a universal service obligation for mobile phone coverage data strength – lose signal in North Devon and no rival provider’s phone mast has any obligation to offer phone coverage for anything other than 999 emergency calls. Travel abroad and your phone will ‘roam’ to a friendly foreign network to ensure you always have the option of staying connected.
The solution to some coverage blindspots may be right around the corner in the form of fewer, bigger networks for everyone – but don’t rule out paying more for it.
For a wide range of IT services right here in North Devon, contact Lineal today: www.lineal.co.uk or 01271 375999
Lineal Software Solutions recently merged with another local IT company, Active Computing & Telecoms Ltd, based in South Molton.
Active Computing formally joined with Lineal as of December, and will continue to offer quality business IT services across Devon as part of Lineal’s IT support division.
Nick Hews, Managing Director of Active explained: “I’m very pleased to see Active joining with Lineal: like Active, Lineal began right here in North Devon, and places a very special importance on listening to their customers’ needs – which was very important to us before moving ahead.”
Managing Director of Lineal and former branch chairman of the North Devon FSB, Mike Matthews said: “We’re delighted to be taking on Active Computing. Between us we can now offer the widest possible range of business IT & telephone systems, technical support and business accounting software.”
Following the Lineal Active merger, the two partners have recently launched their new website (www.lineal.co.uk) for 2016.
Former staff members from Active now work at the premises of Lineal, and added together the two companies have more than 50 years’ experience trading across the wider North Devon area and beyond.
Lineal recently offered our photographic services to the 2015 Barnstaple Pilot Gig Regatta, hosted on the river Taw.
Managing Director Mike Matthews said: “It was fantastic for us to see such a popular event right here on Lineal’s doorstep at Castle Quay, Barnstaple. Crews came from every corner of North Devon and beyond, with spectators crowding onto the Strand and waterfront to get a good view. We were delighted to be able to photograph the spectacle for all of the participating rowers.”
“Capturing a large event like this can be a challenge because of the weather conditions and distances/obstacles involved – you need the right technology to get up close to the action as each race widens out. Being in the start boat allowed me to get up close, and sometimes very friendly, to the crews, with some of the exertion pictures not looking out of place at a gurning competition!”
The regatta drew in eight pilot gig crews from right across the wider North Devon and North Cornwall areas, with Ilfracombe Pilot Gig Club winning the regatta overall. North Devon’s beloved 22 Squadron’s Search & Rescue Helicopter from RMB Chivenor also performed a farewell flypast on the final day of its operations.
For help with all your IT needs, get in touch with Lineal today via: 01271 375999