Birthdays are our favourite. Sometimes you get the day off, people always have to be nice to you and there’s usually cake. And everyone knows the milestone birthdays are the best. That might explain why we’re so excited to be celebrating our 21st Birthday here at Clearsky I.T! That’s right everyone, we can now legally drink in America (as well as a load of other weird things you can only do when you turn 21). But on a serious note, this is an incredible milestone and we couldn’t be prouder to share it with our wonderful staff and clients; without you guys we wouldn’t be here today, so thank you.

To commemorate our 21st birthday, we’re going to be taking a look at our history, and what made us who we are today:

11.11.1995 – A 16 year old Lee Chappell began building computers for home users. No offices yet! The “business” was ran from his dad’s company, Chappell Associates. Total Computers and Accessories was born.

1997 – The first ever member of staff, Phil, was employed. Using connections with friends working in I.T. departments, schools and businesses were supported by TCA for the first time ever.

1999 – Excitement and fear swept across the nation; the millennium was looming. Who knew what would happen when the date switched 01/01/2000? Rumours of banks collapsing and power stations shutting down circulated as the Millennium Bug terrified business owners everywhere.

2000 – The year of the Internet. General access for consumers and businesses became cheaper and more accessible. More and more people began accessing the World Wide Web.

2000 – Our second and third members of staff of were employed; TCA welcomes Luke and Darren.

2002 – Dan became the fourth member of staff to join the TCA team.

2005 – TCA began offering custom built laptops, AKA, Quixonix, a highly valued product in our custom built PC range. Customers loved the reliability of the PC’s servers and the fact we could provide them with laptops.

2006 – TCA welcomed Dan to the team, as the fifth member of staff ever employed.

2008 – Media Panel was introduced as one of the most cutting edge, all-in-one design tools. The 46-58” touch-screen (which was a big deal when the biggest home screens at the time were only 32”) had a PC built into the back, allowing home and work users to take full advantage of the technology. TCA were one of the first to begin importing Media Panel from America to the UK.

2011 – A second Dan joined the team as the sixth employee of TCA, with Jason joining shortly after.

2012 – TCA set up shop on Warminster Road, Westbury. Supplying PC’s and parts, Pat joined the team and helped managing the shop as the eight member of the team.

2014 – VOIP Cloud phone systems were introduced to TCA’s product range, allowing customers to remove the need to have a phone system in their office, and made working from home even easier. You’re welcome!

2015 – Customers were able to purchase modern CCTV cameras from TCA, compared to old style, inferior systems still offered by many.

2015 – Megan joined the team as TCAs first ever marketer, allowing TCA to create a closer bond to our brilliant customers.

2015 – The world waved goodbye to TCA and said hello to Clearsky I.T! The re-brand of the business presented a new name, logo and website, whilst still providing the same fast and responsive support.

2016 – Website Design and Social Media Management became services offered by Clearsky I.T, allowing customers a better chance to engage with their online market.

2016 – Chris became the tenth (and currently final) member of the Clearsky I.T. team.

And there it is folks! A (very brief) history of how we got to where we are today, and when we say “we couldn’t have done it without you”, we really do mean it. But as fun as it is to look back, we’re in the business of looking forward. With that, let’s take a look at where we think the technology world is heading:

The Internet of Things – The IoT is becoming a stronger and stronger concept as the years pass us. Confused? Essentially, it’s about connecting your devices over the internet, so they can talk to your other devices and applications. Still confused? What if you’re fridge could text you when you were out of milk? Or if your coffee-maker knew that you just woke up, so it begins your first brew of the morning? Although it sounds remarkably like the kitchen you’d find on the ship in Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, this technology is already available, and becoming more and more popular.

Bring Your Own Device – BYOD is becoming increasingly popular amongst employers and employees. The growing trend has evolved to empower workforce’s through the ‘consumerisation of IT’. But what actually is it? Well, it’s exactly what it says it is; employees bring their own device to work, and use them rather than company provided equipment. Why? 1. Because people like to use their own devices (it’s what they’re used to at the end of the day) and 2. Business owners save a hell of a lot of money (imagine not having to buy PCs for all your staff). This all sounds like a dream come true, but BYOD does contain a darker side; if not fully understood and regulated, it can seriously threaten IT security and company’s sensitive information.

Death of the Office – Unless completely necessary, home users will become more and more frequent. With the advancement in flexibility and faster internet connections (think 4g, mobile dongles, even wifi routers) the necessity to get out of bed and go to an office is becoming more and more obsolete.

Goodbye Emails – Services like Slack and Microsoft Teams are further supporting the idea that email communication will become non-existent in future years. Chatbots are present on most websites, companies with apps often provide in-app support (think multi-billion dollar company, Uber) and even whole countries like China and India have stopped using emails.