Sramana: Was that engagement what you used to get a product developed and launched?
Krish Kupathil: That was just one example. We did other engagements as well. We did an engagement for Samsung and have customized devices for operators across the world such as Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile.
Orange mobile had made a conscious decision not to go with open source technology that included Android. Any devices launched on their network had to be qualified by our team for compliance. Those were the types of engagements that we started with.
Sramana: What year was this?
Krish Kupathil: We did that in mid-2010. Today we have almost 400 people, under three years later.
Sramana: As you maintained this close relationship with handset vendors, what occurred to you as a product opportunity? You were already bootstrapping using services and getting close to the customers to understand the problems and find an opportunity for a bigger business. Can you walk us through the process of coming face to face with your product opportunity?
Krish Kupathil: We saw that iOS and Android were the dominant platforms, followed by Windows 8, which is finally coming on strong now. The iOS and Android platforms became huge success stories. Both application stores had a very large number of applications. The consumer space was a huge success.
The underlying chips went from single core to dual core to quad core. The devices were becoming more and more powerful because of the hardware increases. The software was desktop capable operating systems, which were very powerful. The consumer space got very crowded. We were working with telecom operators, handset vendors, and hand chip vendors. Several of those players approached us asking if we had a solution to enable VPN. They were asking if we could help them access Microsoft applications from an Android phone.
That is when we realized that the operating systems were strong, there was phenomenal computing power in them, and that these devices could do a lot more than play Angry Birds. They were much more powerful than the computers I was using 10 years ago. The only enterprise device at that time was BlackBerry, which was going down. Why can’t and Android or iOS device become an enterprise device?
To be an enterprise device, the phone needed to be secure and the admin needed to be able to control the device. That is when we decided that enterprise mobility was a space we were going to get into. We just had to decide what space we wanted to get into.