TouchByte Facentry technology in use at Advance Housing and Support Ltd, Camborne.
TouchByte is a technology start-up business which specialises in facial recognition access control. Founded in Cornwall in 2015, the company’s Facentry technology was developed to provide a safe, secure and convenient keyless face recognition access control solution in a number of different sectors (for example, construction, health and care and education). It works by converting images of users’ faces into biometric information that either grants or denies access to a particular space. 
Companies utilising the Facentry software can access to the FaceOS web-based platform which allows them to enrol, schedule and manage their Facentry solution. It captures invaluable demographic and statistical data in real time which is collated into insightful reports on their customers or visitors. The technology has provided a truly contactless solution for people to access a space with their face across a number of different industries.

Graham Love, Operations Director, TouchByte talks about his experience of working with the University

"We worked through the EPIC project and that allowed us to gain access to expertise and facilities from the University of Plymouth. That allowed us to trial our Facentry technology at Advance Housing in Camborne. 
Working with the academics at the University of Plymouth really helped us to understand the needs of users of our system in the care sector. And it’s allowed us to come up with lots of small improvements which overall have really facilitated the development of the product".
Graham Love, TouchByte

Working in partnership

Following the significant impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, it became evident how beneficial TouchByte’s Facentry technology could be when used within the care sector. Not only did the existing access control methods care homes had in place, such as keypads and codes, become hotspots for transmission of harmful microbes; but implementing this technology also increased efficiency and resident autonomy and addressed security access concerns.
TouchByte was supported by the University’s eHealth Productivity and Innovation in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly (EPIC) project which was funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The interdisciplinary project was designed to increase the use of technology in both health and social care with the hope of improving the health and wellbeing of people in Cornwall and boosting the Cornish economy in the digital health technology sector. The project team collaborated closely with health and care users, workers and commissioners to identify real world need.
Working alongside the University, TouchByte gained access to contacts in the health and care industry that allowed them to trial their Facentry technology in two care home settings in Cornwall; a residential care home with 43 older adults (Site A) and one supported living facility, provided by Advance Housing and Support Ltd., caring for six individuals with mental health issues (Site B).
The EPIC team ran the evaluation, conducting data collection (through pre and post-implementation interviews with staff members at the two sites), analysis and providing Touchbyte with an extensive report on the acceptability and impact of the Facentry technology to Touchbyte. The company were delighted to learn of such a positive response to their software, allowing care workers to engage with patients without interruptions, while giving the residents their independence and autonomy.
Without this hands-on business support, bespoke academic expertise, eHealth contacts and ecosystem and funding that EPIC provided, TouchByte would not have gained such a detailed understanding of how their technology is aiding their customers, and equally, how improvements to their software could further enhance the lives of those living in these care settings. This partnership has opened up a variety of opportunities for TouchByte to work alongside early adopters and commercial partners to install its Facentry technology across multiple sectors.