The Connectors

Chris Piche, CEO of Eyeball, got his start by developing a video-chat app.

Eyeball Networks connects millions of subscribers with patented technologies

For better of for worse, technology affords us the benefit of living in a world of instant gratification: You want it now? There’s an app for that. But before those possibilities become realities, it takes a team of engineers, device manufacturers, and developers to not only create the technology to meet the ever-changing needs of the customer, but to be one step ahead of the game and predict those needs, says Chris Piche, CEO of West Vancouver-based Eyeball Networks Inc., a software company that builds VoIP, video chat and IP messaging software for infrastructure applications.

The company sells solutions to service providers such as telecommunications and cable companies, device manufacturers, and application developers, who, in turn, provide services to the consumer and enterprise markets.

Originally, Piche developed a video-chat application before being courted by large global communication companies for the technology behind his app. The companies were impressed with how well the app handled connectivity and with the quality of the calls once connected. Piche quickly turned gears, realizing he was in the solutions business, patented some of those unique technologies and wrapped a line of products around them.

Those three core technologies form the foundation for its entire product line for which Eyeball Networks is known today: AnyFirewall Technology, which guarantees connectivity; AnyBandwidth Technology, which guarantees carrier-grade call quality; and AntiSPIT Technology, which protects users against VoIP spam.

“The value proposition is now ‘any’—any network, any device, anywhere, anyone, anytime,” Piche says. “But this value proposition comes with baggage, because all that freedom needs to be connected. That’s Eyeball.”

By the NumbersHistorically, VoIP and video messaging and telephony services struggled with connectivity and call quality. “VoIP has made its way into the backbone networks, saving telecommunications companies millions in backhaul costs,” Piche explains. “It’s now making its way into the business PBX [Private Branch Exchange] market as a viable option. And services like BlackBerry Messenger, Skype, and FaceTime are bringing it to the masses one smartphone at a time.”

“Many of our clients are large communication companies that have launched valuable services and products to the market that have improved how we communicate, such as new mobile devices, cloud-storage applications, or new business collaboration tools,” says Matt Simms, vice president of marketing. “But before those great products were released, there were significant development challenges they had to overcome that Eyeball’s products and teams helped solve for them.”

One challenge Eyeball’s clients face is assuring business users they’ll get the same 100 percent connectivity they’re used to with their old telephone service. Once connected, the users need the company to maintain call quality over a host of network environments, from the office to Starbucks to the back of a cab. Additionally, these new services must be integrated into their own devices or applications, so it interoperates and provides a seamless experience.

“We quickly establish ourselves with new customers as their go-to resource in our area of expertise,” Piche says. “Within minutes of being introduced into a new opportunity, we’ve typically uncovered or shed light on critical technical considerations that an average prospective customer has not even considered. It’s the classic ‘not knowing what you don’t know’ conundrum. Well, Eyeball knows what you don’t know.”

Mobile is the focus right now. “Everything we do is customer-driven, and these days our customers are all about the transition from PC-centric computing to mobile-centric computing,” Piche says. “Business everywhere is going mobile, and with that transition comes a host of connectivity-related challenges that we need to create solutions for.”

In an ever-evolving industry that thrives on finding ways to do things better and faster, Eyeball Networks is sure to keep its eye on the ball.