Startup Interview: Meshin’s CEO Chris Holmes, Plus You Could Win An iPad!

Most app developers and development companies have been going to iOS before the Android platform. Trends are showing that’s starting to change. One of the companies that has released to Android before iPhone is Meshin.

Meshin’s co-founder Kristen Galliani explained to that Apple doesn’t allow apps to call into other apps, that was one of the main reasons they needed the more open architecture of Android to build Meshin, an email and message aggregator, and Meshin Recall. Meshin Recall syncs with Evernote and helps organize your notes by using dates from your calendar. There is a lot more in store for Meshin Recall. The Meshin team is on the tip of the iceberg of the contextual intelligence space.

Meshin is about to unveil their Meshin Recall product for iOS and they are currently looking for Beta Testers to sign up. If you sign up for the iOS beta and refer the most people you could win one of those flash “New iPads” go here to do that.

Meshin came out of the Palo Alto Research Center with their biggest chunk of funding coming from Xerox (remember that little company that makes copiers and fathered the Mac?). PARC needed someone to bring Meshin to life and that someone is Chris Holmes.

With more than 25 years in the tech start up arena and some huge accomplishments under his belt he was the perfect fit.

Check out the interview after the break

So you’ve been involved in technology for 25 years, what did you do before Meshin?

Startups for 25 years – (see linkedin) Founder of Visionware (Uk Startup) then launched in US sold in 1995 For years I sat, literally in the US, helping boards in the UK take their businesses to the US. I landed as a startup investor/advisor for Mindjet, then I came to PARC as EIR to commercialize the opportunity.

How did Meshin come about?

Meshin is based on years of research inside PARC and they need someone from the startup world to bring it to life. So, I built a small team of startup professionals to incubate here. We are fortunate. We have the PARC minds and we have Xerox sponsorship. Ursula Burns, the CEO of Xerox personally signed off on the funding. We are hard at work getting it right to spin out as a separate business with VC Funding.

We like to think of the original Meshin app as a message/email aggregator with a news reader feel, is this how you see it? We often compare it to Pulse or Taptu for email and messaging?

Good spot. We have often compared our app as Pulse for your communications. However, while it is a beautiful interface for RSS feeds we have discovered it is a little complicated. Our users love what we are doing but they want a simpler world. We try really hard to listen and are in the process of making some changes.

And why we are on it, a lot of the hot new high profile apps, like, pinterest, went iPhone first, you guys went Android first and seem to have no qualms about it at all, why Android first?

We got a great deal of guidance from VCs we were building relationships with that it was the place to start. It is an open development and marketing is faster, but our Recall is currently under development on iOS. We recognize the value of “the Apple” devotee and are looking forward to getting there in the next few weeks. As a matter of fact in two weeks we will kick-off sign ups for a beta of our Recall on iOS at SXSW.
Meshin and Recall are free, where are you guys making money? Are you building scale for an aquisition? More apps? do you have other apps coming out?
Well we all need to make money, and of course that is in the works. Right now we just want the world to know about us. People like you help us out, and our wish is that people will see the value of connecting their information. We have so many ideas and additions to our current apps or future apps, but as a start-up it is about focus. But, keep your eye on us.. there is a great deal happening right now.
On Recall, the concept behind Recall is so simple, add evernotes to calendar entries i can’t believe no one was doing this before (I guess that’s not a question)
We love our Evernote integration. And we love our Evernote relationship. They are a joy to work with. Look for Recall to get so much smarter in the near future. It is just the beginning and Evernote is key. Their CEO Phil Libin talks about the value of context, and that is where we come in. Context is our focus.
It’s my understanding that you’re originally from Manchester, what brought you to the states?
Ouch Manchester.. Manchester United is the only team I love to hate in the North. Unless they are playing Chelsea. I am actually from Yorkshire. I am from a small town called Shipley, and then I moved on to live in Leeds after going to University in Birmingham. My company Visionware, I mentioned earlier, brought me to the US when I set up operations here. I decided to stay. It is so much warmer here.. beaches.. skiing. The only thing it lacks is great beer.
How did you come up with the name Meshin?
The word that is at the center is mesh. Our technology, the smarts of Meshin, is what we call the iMesh. Connecting information in a way that the mind does, but faster. Meshin seemed natural. Plus it was way more fun than some of the other options
(the fun question) Soccer or Football?
There is only one Football. The one where you use your foot. You Americans call it soccer. We call it Football or Footie. As I say 5 Billion people cannot be wrong
You could win an iPad for signing up for Meshin’s iOS beta click here to do that
Check out some of our stories from “everywhere else”
We’re on a nationwide sneaker-strapped road trip of startups, more on that here


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