Tatsiana Kerimova has been the driving force behind Orangesoft for a decade. Sharing her views on various aspects of the mobile app industry, she explained MobileAppDaily what it takes to run a successful company in the industry, new technology and how the future looks like.
1) What is the biggest difference between working with a big brand like Adidas and a new startup?
Since for almost ten years of being on the market, we have worked with a large number of established brands as well as startups, it isn't easy to name just one difference. Although I think that for a big brand, the mobile application development project is one of many other projects, whereas for a startup - it is the main project, the one the startup's fate depends on.
2) What were the main challenges of setting up a development company?
We had an excellent team of co-founders from the start, and we still do. We have always tried to hire only the best teammates with strong hard and soft skills. Finding these professionals has always been our main challenge. But when I look at our solid team and the results it produces, I understand that these challenges have not been in vain.
3) Orangesoft is going to complete its 10 years soon. How much has your approach and the company evolved over the decade?
During this time, we have grown into a world-class company:
-We have completed over 300 projects for clients all over the world: from the United States to New Zealand. We have also received various awards, including The Best App of the year by AppStore.
-Our team has 80+ strong specialists, many of whom have been working with us for over 5 years now.
-We don't only develop products; we also share our experience with others conducting tech consulting and tech due diligence for startups.
-We are among the Top 100 Mobile Application Developers, according to most of the respected international platforms, and in the Top 5 in the ratings of local IT companies.
4) Your company has created many mobile gaming apps now. Do you think gaming apps truly make the most of new technologies?
The most popular mobile games today are not fundamentally different from the mobile games five years ago. Certainly, graphics, performance, and gameplay are better today, and the AR/VR technologies are being used more and more. However, I'm sure that the biggest leap in mobile game development with the use of new gadgets to navigate and play the games is still ahead of us.
5) As user experience gains more & more relevance, what approach does Orangesoft take before starting an app design?
We're paying a lot of attention to user experience since it is one of the key elements of the project's success. As a rule, we start with technical business analysis, collect the maximum requirements, analyze applications with similar functionality, communicate with potential users, and test UI prototypes. We are guided by the principle that users are comfortable with what they are already familiar with. We always try to look over the Apple and Google guides, as they have the largest amount of statistics on user behaviour and UX.
6) How do you keep your employees motivated and coordinated?
These three, I believe, are the key motivators:
-The presence of more experienced colleagues who are open and ready to support the newcomers;
-Exciting projects with technical challenges and the ability to work with innovative solutions;
-The company and its employees should share the vision of the further development of the company.
7) How important is marketing for an app development company?
For most projects, marketing is critical. Unfortunately, the quality of the code and the abundance of functionality alone are rarely enough. The MVP version of the project may be launched without marketing when there is an opportunity to test the idea on a limited audience. The projects that ride the viral wave can be wildly successful, but these are extremely rare. Most often, there is a lot of work behind a project, not only in its development but also in the marketing of it.
8) As new technologies like XR, VR, IoT, etc gain more commercial acceptance, how do you integrate that with the existing technology stack?
I see more potential for IoT solutions. We have already accumulated sufficient experience in working with IoT technologies. For example, we have developed mobile applications that manage medical equipment, apps for indoor navigation, security and sports needs. At the moment the team has sufficient expertise, and we continue to build it up. This is one of our key interests.
9) Which new technology is the most exciting for mobile app development?
What could be more impressive than data, which is so easy to collect legally? I am convinced that the technologies associated with collecting, storing, processing, and delivering data will have the greatest impact on everything. Big data is already developing exponentially - almost all information about us is digitized, and mobile apps play a significant role in this. The growth of IoT and wearable tech will allow us to accumulate even more in-depth information about us humans and our behaviour. I think in a few more years, regardless of the business area, we will work only with uniquely personalized offers for clients. And mobile apps will be one of the main tools for such services.
10) How did you improvise under the COVID 19 market slump?
It seems that we have been quite lucky since we have been able to work with clients remotely and show excellent results. This year, not only clients but also employees from our two offices started to work remotely. We adapted quickly, and I can say with confidence that the quality of our projects has not been compromised.
I have to admit we had to improvise more with internal corporate events, like online parties and our online plank tournaments.
11) What are the crucial lessons for the startups that are struggling because of the pandemic?
Seems like the best answer is - you never know;-)
But in all seriousness, I see two main lessons:
- You need to act faster than you think.
- You must always have a plan B and a Plan C.
12) What tips would you give to women who are thinking of taking the entrepreneurial leap, but are not sure about it?
You will succeed! Go for it!
And if you have any doubts, you can contact me. I will be glad to give you some advice. You can also contact a ‘Women in Tech’ community in your area and gain some valuable insights and helpful advice there.
The world lacks projects created by women and companies run by women. I believe the world will benefit from more women leaders and become a better place.
13) What are your plans for the next 10 years?
Technologies are developing exponentially, and therefore planning 10 years is not very realistic, but what we will do is:
1. Keep our company growing and making great products for our clients, using the latest technologies.
2. Focus on IoT and Healthcare projects that will benefit millions of people around the world.
3. Continue to contribute to social projects.
- Finding great teammates is a challenge and also very important for a company.
- Ideal gaming technology is still ahead of us.
- User experience is one of the key elements of project success.
- Studying user behaviour is very crucial.
- The company and its employees should share the vision of the further development of the company.
- The quality of the code and the abundance of functionality alone are rarely enough, app marketing is also crucial for success.
- Technologies associated with collecting, storing, processing, and delivering data will have the greatest impact on everything.
- You need to act faster than you think.
- Always have a Plan B and a Plan C.
- IoT and Healthcare projects will benefit millions of people around the world.
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