Interview With Itay, CEO of Whistle Camera

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Recently we reviewed a Android app called Whistle Camera. Everyone in the office went crazy on that app, as it lets you take selfies just by whistling. I personally have been using Whistle Camera regularly on my phone since then and just love this app. So, we decided to get in touch with the team behind Whistle Camera to know more about them and how did the idea of this app came to their mind.

As has been the revelation in all our recent interviews, this also turned out to be a small fantastic team, instead of a big corporation. These are three guys, who have full time jobs, and work on making apps like Whistle Camera in their part time.

Name of lead guy resembles the country he comes from: Itay from Italy :) He is 33 years old. He started this company, together with his two friends, in December 2013, and their first app was already out on January 22nd 2014. Since then, they have turned around quite a few apps, with our favorite one being the Whistle Camera.

Without much ado, let’s get to know more about the man who gave us this fantastic app:

ILFS: Tell us more about yourself.

Itay: My name is Itay, a father of 2 amazing daughters, I am a software engineer. I love technology and I wanted to do something else besides my work as senior software team leader in a leading software company. And in my spare time I love to do sports, mostly football.

 

Itay

​With the years, I started to learn more and more about developing mobile applications and I got pretty good hang of it. So, I offered 2 friends, also software engineers (Aviram and Lior), to join me and start a team (DreamBit). We are doing everything by ourselves, from inventing till marketing. Our ideas are mostly an answer to a need.

ILFS: Are we correct in interpreting that you are doing this full time now?

Itay: DreamBit is taking a lot of my time but, unfortunately it is still not a full time.. I still need to support my family with a steady paycheck.

ILFS: How did idea of Whistle Camera came to your mind?

Itay: I was trying to take a selfie but wanted to take it from the rear camera, and it was almost impossible thing to do.. so I thought, why does it have to be only way to shoot a photo?! So I gathered a team meeting and we started to discuss.. we realized that there are many times where taking a picture could be very frustrating (Gloves, wet hands, driving, etc..) and we can make it much easier (already had whistle detecting experience with our last successful app “Auto Answer“).

Its kinda like we thought of our previous app “WazeUP“, I was getting interrupted with an incoming call while navigating in my car.. So I thought that there must be a good solution for this situation… I do want to answer calls but don’t want it to hide my navigation app.. (NavigUP came after we got some requests from India, from users that were using Sygic and not Waze..)

ILFS: How much time did you take to develop this app?

Itay: It is hard to say.. because we are working on many projects in parallel.. and still have to support our users all around the world and maintain and develop new features for the published apps.. so, in total, I’ll say 2 months.. from the prototype to the final product..we are working very hard on testing the app on various devices..

ILFS: How big is the team?

Itay: We are 3 friends and for our project game “Tricky rooms” we hired a graphical designer..

Here is Aviram:

Aviram

And here is Lior:

Lior

ILFS: Any plans of making similar app for iOS or Windows Phones as well?

Itay: We are working on “Whistle Camera” for iOS (there are many requests for that)

about Windows phone.. in the future.. not everything can be done on iOS (Apple’s limitations..) “Auto Answer” for example; you can’t answer a call programmatically or send automated SMS.

ILFS: When testing this app, we realized that there are some girls in our office who don’t know how to whistle. Any plans of adding more voice cues to this app, like, Take selfie by clapping, or just speaking?

Itay: We are working hard to find a good solution (Voice Command) that will work on all of the devices… even the old ones…

ILFS: We noticed on your website that you are working on two more projects: Last Call and Bird-it. What are they about?

Itay: There are more projects beside those two that we are working on :)

Bird-It is a game that we’ve started 3 months ago we got a lot of progress in it but thinking to drop it because our testers did not like it as much as we wanted..

And Last Call is a new tool that will give you a lot of cool and useful information about your incoming and ongoing calls..

ILFS: What else do you have in future for Whistle Camera?

Itay: Every day we get emails from users that love this app :) We want to add really great features but still want to keep the app clean and simple. There are a lot of requests and suggestions, some we will take and some will have to wait.

ILFS: We noticed that you have introduced a Pro version of the app as well. Apart from removing ads, what are the additional features in Pro version?

Itay: Currently the pro version is the same just without the ads as you wrote. We want all of our users to use the app, therefore, ads or buying the app are just a way to support us so we could still develop new features..

ILFS: What was the biggest hurdle you faced in your entrepreneurial journey?

Itay: Well, the biggest hurdle we faced and are still facing is marketing and advertising. For people like us, and like most of your site visitors, we have a dream and even the technology knowledge, but we don’t have infinite budgets for marketing/advertising and promotion like the “big companies”.

But it is not the biggest hurdle!!

The biggest hurdle is the lost time that we could have spent with our family and friends.

We are spending most of our hours after work on Dreambit, and it costs us the loss of precious time with our families and our sleeping time, which is down by 50%.

So you should know, working full time and fulfilling your dream, it is almost 24 hours job, you should be ready for it, but most important you should prepare your family for it.

ILFS: What advice would you like to give to those who are doing full time job now and want to start their own company, like you have done?

Itay: I can advise you this, despite of what I said on the hurdles; there is nothing more exciting and fulfilling than living and working on your dream.

I am excited as a boy when I see someone on the street whistling to take a picture using our App.

So people, try to do it, don’t be scared and don’t give up, keep trying, if it didn’t work this time it will work other time.

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