Belfast start-up TapSOS is NI winner of 'tech for good' competition

  • Photo: Becca Hume, founder of TapSOS

    Belfast-based TapSOS has been announced as the Northern Ireland regional winner of the Super Connect for Good competition.

    Run by Hays recruiters and start-up connectors Empact Ventures, the competition recognised TapSOS as the best emerging tech start up in Northern Ireland that brings positive social change and enhances people’s lives through technology.

    It was one of eight regional winners across the UK and Ireland and the company also placed second in the national final behind Beam, the London regional winner.

    TapSOS is a smartphone app providing non-verbal contact with emergency services (999). It has been designed to be highly visual with a universal language to simplify connection to emergency services in stressful situations. The user is able to understand and process information quickly and efficiently while receiving guidance and reassurance.

    When an emergency is reported, TapSOS automatically identifies and displays the user’s location rapidly through GPS. This is then provided to emergency services.

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    Compared to an average four-minute telephone call to 999, users can report an emergency with TapSOS in under one minute.

    At present, those unable to telephone 999 can use an emergency SMS service, However, this technology is limited and has reported issues concerning speed, ease of use and accuracy.

    Second place in Northern Ireland was awarded to cycling safety tech firm See.SenseEthel Care, which uses tech to connect families and carers with their elderly loved one via use of an 'always-on' touchscreen tablet, came third.

    The regional winners and the national winner were awarded a selection of prizes worth over £90,000.

    RELATED: TapSOS: Tech For Good

    Becca Hume, founder of TapSOS, said: “It has been incredible being recognised as a regional winner of the Super Connect for Good competition and I have already had the opportunity to connect with a wide network of talented entrepreneurs from across the UK as part of this process.

    "Winning a competition like this is very important for raising brand awareness of our product and gaining support to progress to the next stage of development. The feedback from the regional judges has been very encouraging and it’s moments like this that help reinforce what you do and why you do it. 

    "Hopefully, by sharing our story, more people will learn about what we do and how it can benefit them.”

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    Gerard Loughran, Head of Engineering at Sonraí Analytics and one of the regional judges for the competition added: "I was delighted by the overall high standard of tech start-up applicants from within Northern Ireland, it will be companies like these that bring the required innovation, know-how, and passion to solve the most critical problems our society currently faces.

    "The regional winner demonstrated not only a measurably viable solution to major health & social problems but also a clear roadmap and solid business approach that would support mass exportation of their product."

    Please visit the Super Connect for Good website for a list of all regional winners:

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