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Interview with pplconnect

We've all been there, we have all at one point lost or forgot our smartphone at home or just when you are out and about. Now I am pleased to bring you, pplconnect  It essentially allows you to access and use your device without changing a single thing. All you will need to do is download the app, sync your smartphone's info with your "virtual smartphone" and now you can log-in to that virtual smartphone on any device and then be able to use your smartphone in real-time. You will be able to receive text messages on your computer, update contact info on your tablet or even make a call using a friend's smartphone. The best part is that you won't have to change your number. 

I had the privilege of interviewing one of the co-founders, Jenview Azzolin, the other co-founder is Denzil D'Sa. Now for a bit of background, Jenviev Azzolin and Denzil D’Sa, have been working together for over 5 years and have accomplished major international successes, such as the launch of the Bombardier Global 7000 & 8000 jets, recognized as the most successful in business aviation history. They have put together a team of 5 senior members in technology and design.

The actual interview. 

TheCanadianTechie: Tell me more about pplconnect, What is it?
Jenviev Azzolin: pplconnect is the name of our company, which focused on leveraging new technology to solve real customer problems n order to have a positive impact. Our values are founded in creativity, diversity, change and positive impact. 

pplconnect lets you access and use your smartphone from any device, without changing a thing. Simply download the pplconnect Android app, sync your smartphone to your virtual smartphone, and voila! You can now log-in to your virtual smartphone on any device and use your smartphone real-time. 
Receive your SMS on your computer, update your contacts on your tablet, even make
a call from a friend’s phone (all without changing your number!).

CT: Where did the idea come from? What was the inspiration behind it?
JA: The product idea was founded in a problem that both Denzil, my co-founder, and I felt. For example, we would forget our phone at home and only realize once we arrive at work. We would then feel the need to turn back to go get our phone, as neither of us could survive without it. We then started talking to our network about this and realized that they felt the same dependency on their smartphone. Research then revealed that this has become a worldwide problem, referred to by experts as nomophobia (the fear of not having access to your phone). With all this evidence on such a widescale problem, we decided we shoud build a solution to address this and diminish our dependency on the physical device, by making our smartphone device agnostic. 

CT:How long did it take to brainstorm, development and promote, to get to where PPL Connect is today?
JA:We've been working on pplconnect for almost 2 years. We started with nothing, but the 2 of us and our desire to build a positive company. We then built our business plan, researched user cases, recruited a team, secured some funding, and started prototyping. We are now at the stage of unveiling our beta. 

CT:What sets apart PPL Connect from similair apps like MightyText or
JA:We are not a remote access to your phone. We are building a completed Virtual Smartphone (a smartphone that is live from the cloud and therefore agnostic of the device) that is synced with your current phone number for your live SMS and calls. We also do a lot more than texts, we link your contacts, calls, SMS, photos and video and eventually apps to be live from the cloud. 

CT:Do you have plans to bring this to other platforms beyond just Android?
JA:We are currently on Android and web, which allows a pplconnect user to log-in to pplconnect on any device via the web browser. We also have plans to build an iOS native app in the future. 

CT:What is next for you and your team once PPL Connect officially launches?
JA:We are currently in private beta. Our goal is to continue to onboard users on our private beta, until we are ready to open it up to the public. In parallel, we are raising a round of funding at the moment. 

CT:When do you think PPL Connect will be available to the general public?
JA:Early 2014. 


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