October 6, 2014
As a photographer, I am impartial towards featuring photo-centric startups on this blog, and interviewing MyRoll was a personal favorite. I hope you enjoy the insight they shared and their app as much as I did!
How long has your startup been around for? Give us some background as to what you do and how you guys have gotten to where you are at.
We started the company about two years ago as “Flayvr”. Our dream was to take the thousands of photos that the average person has on their device and to organize them in a totally new way. We first launched on iOS and then on Android. The product was a huge success with large retention rates. People loved using our app as an alternative photo gallery and we saw that there was a huge opportunity to become the native gallery replacement by helping users manage their photos in a smart way.
We have most recently released MyRoll. MyRoll provides the market with the first gallery that becomes “smarter” the more you use it. For example, if you live in New York and you visit Los Angeles, MyRoll knows to package that roll as a unique set. MyRoll is an intelligently personalized experience; it uses behavioral, contextual, and image data analysis to learn which memories matter most to each user and to tailor the gallery to each individual.
Who are your competitors and how do you differentiate yourselves?
There is no similar app that is aiming to become your gallery replacement. What was previously available did very basic things such as changing the gallery layout but nobody else creates an intelligent, personalized experience.
One thing we take pride in is our application’s user experience. As mentioned earlier, it’s all personalized with many exciting tools and features.We also focus on helping the user share photos by guiding the discovery of the best images from moments that our system knows were significant milestones.
Additionally, we provide a unique URL that can shared with whomever you want. MyRoll is probably the easiest way to create a Facebook album.
What are some challenges that you guys have faced and how have you overcome them?
Other then that, we needed to create a product that on the one hand provided users with everything they expect from a photo roll, and on the other hand, innovate enough to improve their experience.
With MyRoll, we are at an advantage since we are improving a product that we are already familiar with from previous projects. Since this is not our first product, we know what needs to be done and how to do it. I think it’s easier to innovate once you have done something in your space, but that needs to be achieved without losing sight of the need to stay fresh and to continuously evolve. In addition, our existing customer base has been very helpful with beta testing and feedback. Customer response and interaction is very important to us.
What tools do you use for communication?
We are still a small team, but we are spread across a couple of continents. Internally, we use email- maybe a bit too much. We are slowly transitioning to using more messaging, primarily GChat.
We use Jira as a Scrum agile management tool. It’s not a communications tool, per say, but it does have comments and that’s really helpful in specific areas.
Google Drive is also big for us. All our shared documents are there.
The team uses Trello for project and task management. The shared boards are helpful for knowing who’s working on what and for assigning tasks as well. The visual aspect of Trello is great.
We have used Asana in the past but we are phasing it out because we are using too many tools.
Whats coming next for you guys?
We are always improving and working on the next thing. Stay tuned to our blog and be in touch!