Success of the Czech Smart TV applications

11. November 2013

Czech Economic newspaper interviewed in his series "Czech successful start-ups" CEO Mautilus - Řehoř Vykoupil - about the beginning and foundation of the company strategy which led Mautilus to the international clients and due to which the company broke worldwide in developing applications for Smart TV.

Czech applications for Smart TV celebrate success around the world The interest is mainly from abroad where are the Smart TVs widespreaded. Important is the ability to develop applications for all brands of televisions. 

The company Mautilus from Brno succeeded to get into the world's young and dynamic market for Smart TVs, where delivers applications to the big players from around the world. The key of the success was the ability to develop applications for different branches of TVs. "The most widespread is Samsung platform for which is also developing the majority of the developers. But when they have to make an application for a different brand they must develop the application from scratch," says Řehoř Vykoupil, the boss and co-founder of the Czech company Mautilus.

His company is instead capable to develop at once for more brands. "We have our own tools developed in our company that allow us to do the application once for all platforms, which is unique in the market," explains Vykoupil. Turnover of the company amounted to about 12 million last year was generated from 80 percent from abroad. The clients are the big names from around the world. Company supplies applications to the companies such as Siemens, important contract is also a video library for the Arabic company Icflix based in Dubai. Czech company developed for them applications for TVs, mobile devices and web browsers. They are planning also game consoles. For Czech market develops and VOYO portal for the owner of CME Nova TV or O2 TV.

The names of the clients cannot be usually public. "The point is that we are preparing many applications for important customers which further offer the applications under their own brand. This way we have up to 60 percent of development," says Vykoupil. However he reveals that among them are big players for example from Canada, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and Spain. The fact that the company is based in Brno does nowise limit in a global effect. "We communicate internationally. As we support the customer in Brno we can support him in London, because thanks to the current Internet speed we have no problems with it," says Vykoupil. However he admits that the company would like to set up in the future branches abroad.

Environment in the development of TV applications is competitive, but not as much as in developing applications for mobile phones. "Good simple application for Android, for example, can make even a good student. But TV application development needs additional hardware and knowledge to be able to offer a product for all platforms," says Vykoupil. It is thus necessary to have different TV brands for testing. Those has Mautilus in offices about 40, apart of them also other devices such as Blu-ray players. The begining with Simbian He founded the company with his colleague Petr Mazanec in 2010. Previously, they were employees in a large international company. But Vykoupil was looking for a new opportunity where he could influence events, which was not possible in the international company. He therefore decided to set up his own company.

Formation of the company, which is based in the South Moravian Innovation Centre, financed from its own funds. And did not accept any investors money so far. At the beginning the company focused on the development for the Symbian system in which has been Petr Mazanec recognized as an expert. But Symbian gradually began to lose influence and the company focused also on other platforms. After some time has come the demand for application on the Smart TV. Finally, this area has developed in something that is for the company unique and gradually about half of twenty developers started to create Smart TV applications. The development for televisions has except of hardware requirements also other specifics, as smart TVs are still going through the initial difficulties. "One thing is to have a Smart TV, the second thing is to connect it to Internet and the third is to start and use the application. World is just getting to the stage where a variety of regular users desire to use applications on TVs. In the Czech Republic is a much smaller percentage than abroad, and this also shows the demand from our customers, "explains Vykoupil why the most demands for TV applications come mainly from abroad. The problem of Smart TVs could be their low speed for running applications. According Vykoupil it is necessary to reinforce and accelerate the operation, which will help to increase usage of Smart TVs. "Everything must run that I could operate it within two or three seconds, as when you insert CD into the player and the music starts play," he describes.