Android platform attracts numerous developers because of its open source and low development threshold features. At the same time, Android also makes more developers come up with entrepreneurship ideas on the Android platform. Android becomes quite popular soon in mainland China. There are all kinds of Android development small teams. The development team Youju Tech which is one of the famous Android development teams in China has lots of download times of its several games on GOOGLE PLAY. Therefore, we contacted the CEO of Youju Tech called Mr. Li Wan Peng and we made an interview with Mr. Li as following:
Q: Can you make a brief introduction of the growth process of your entrepreneurial company?
Mr. Li: Our team heard from a foreign friend that the future prospect of Android is very good in October, 2008. And our team engages in the game development, so we chose the development of Android game. In fact, we has experienced too many difficulties. In the early period, a lot of people didn’t understand what we were doing and they wanted us make Symbian or MTK game development. But we insist on. However, insist is not equal to success. Because Android has not yet been popular, so we need to focus on Android game development and continuously launch more and better games.
Q: What the background was when the company established entrepreneurship?
Mr. Li: When the company was founded in the stage of early mobile Internet, the mobile terminal Symbian was popular. When the profitable mobile-game companies produced Symbian or Kjava game, iPhone was the only one popular smart phone. Android is just at the publishing stage. A lot of manufacturers still doubt and have wait-and-see attitude of Android.
Q: What risks does your company encounter in the development process? What memorable things
happened to your company?
Mr. Li: Nearly all face these risks: capital risk, product risk, market risk, etc.Especially in July 2009, my company had no profits and entrepreneurial companiesmy staff had no salary for 2 months due to the immaturity of the market and the insufficiency of the quantity of terminal. At the same time, our first game which was released in March 2009 was failed, because it wasn’t in line with European and American people’s habit. Its sales was very bad and quite far away from our expectation. The confidence of my company members was hitten.
Q: How did your company overcome the difficulties?
Mr. Li: We quickly adjusted our team and our confidence in the market. Especially adjustment for the products of Europe and the U.S..We launched steel wire hero and the red dragon series games which gained market’s recognition.
Q: As we all know, the funds of a startup company is not enough. Of course, it is difficult to recruit to the satisfied employees. How does your company do in these areas? How you does your company maintain the staff?
Mr. Li: Android itself is lack of talents. Therefore, we basically start from the intern training. Gradually the intern members become the main members of the team. The most important thing for an entrepreneurial team is team cohesion and future prospects.
Q: What is the state of your company’s development now? What are the new business development?
Mr. Li: At present, my company has a certain popularity on Android game development. But the market is still in the early stage, we should wait for some time to gain profits. Currently, we focus on Android game’s development. Before we focused on the development of Android mobile phone games. However, the Android platform is getting more and more popular in the world, so we will develop related games for Android panel computers in the next step.
Q: As a third-party software developer, to make excellent softwares are important, but to develop the sales of your application is also very important. Therefore, how about the situation of your sales channels of these application softwares?
Mr. Li: Our current sales channels mainly concentrate in the Android Market all over China, including GOOGLE PLAY and so on; and manufacturers’ channels, including Motorola, Lenovo, Samsung and so on.
Q: What exciting products does your company have now? How does your company pack and promote your software products?
Mr. Li: At present, the products are basically previous products, including the simple and funny game- steel wire hero of which the paid version was ever in GOOGLE PLAY’s Top 10. At the same time, the game of red dragon series is popular to European and American people. The downloads of 5 kinds of games were more than 800,000 times.
Q: The developers who make general applications are not like the developers who make customized software undertake some programs. The developers who make general applications have their own project planning. What do these project requirements come from? In the future, will those traditional developers be threatened by these entrepreneurial companies?
Mr. Li: There are different concepts between outsourcing and own projects. Doing own projects need market research, user research, channel survey and so on. It is harder to make a good software or a good game. After all, it is to meet the needs of most users. Therefore, the work in early stage is so much. However, outsourcing needs to make according to the requirements of the outsourcing party and mainly challenge is technology.
Q: What is your view to the current competition in the form of a mobile development platform?
Mr. Li: The development of the mobile Internet will appear in these years. It is the best opportunity for entrepreneurial companies like us in these few years. After all, there are many differences between the mobile Internet and the fixed Internet. The mobile Internet is in the early stage. Therefore, many models are not sure and any company has its opportunity.
Q: Why did you choose the Android platform to do at first as a testing ground? Because Android has just started and has less competitors? Or do you have confidence in the development of the Android platform? What is the advantage of Android? Will you change your business to other platforms in the future?
Mr. Li: The biggest characteristic of Android is open source. We also take a fancy to its open source. We estimate that its penetration rate is very high in the future. With the development of mobile Internet and smart phones, Android has a big opportunity. If we go on to do Symbian or Java, we should not have any chance. Therefore, I chose Android.
Q: Some people say that the Android platform version leads to flood and lack of unity due to its open source. It causes developers of software transplantation waste more energy for iterative development. How do you think of this problem?
Mr. Li: The open source of Android is bound to cause too many versions. Just as Java was launched and each vendor made a version. It caused the cost of development increase. This is really a big problem. However, if there is no open source, Android will not develop so fast.
Q: China’s consumers do not have the habits to pay for consumption. Therefore, how do software makers keep their own source of income?
Mr. Li: At present, if you make the Android business, you don’t need to consider earning money. After all, most of them are free of charge. Many companies keep observing the situation or just begin this business in the early stage. In the early stage, you can get incomes from outsourcing, foreign income, custom made by manufactures. In the future, after the popularity of the terminal, there will be an opportunity to gain profits.
Q: Now more and more entrepreneurs are from developers. Do you want to share some experience with us?
Mr. Li: Entrepreneurship has a great temptation to everyone, but you need to consider the worst case in entrepreneurship. In particular, cash flow problems, personnel loss and so on. In fact, I don’t have much experience. We are now in the process of entrepreneurial experience. We can communicate more in the future.
Q: In your opinion, what factors do entrepreneurs require? (economic sources, full energy, opportunity, judgment of the situation, the abundant technology base, interpersonal connections)
Mr. Li: The first is the team, the second is the direction, the third is executive force. I feel these three points are very important.
Q: As an entrepreneur, how do you understand the entrepreneurship spirit?
Mr. Li: In fact, the entrepreneurial spirit is the team spirit. Everyone in the team strives for a common goal.
Q: Can you introduce your personal experience? How did you choose the entrepreneurial path?
Mr. Li: In fact, personal experience is not important. The most important thing is the team’s experience. We made game development before. After we knew the Android platform, we decided to focus on the game development on the Android. Especially, there are more opportunities in the smartphone game development.
Q: How do you evaluate the development state of the company now? What shall we do to avoid some risk in the future?
Mr.Li:The future risk is how to play our own characteristics and keep our advantages to focus more on Android game development after big companies enter this field.
Q: In your opinion, do you think it is good or bad for developers rush to entrepreneurship? How do you think of this phenomenon?
Mr.Li: In fact, it is not a good thing or a bad thing. It is related to everyone’s experience and ideas. Entrepreneurship is not a problem. The problem is whether you have entrepreneurship in the best time.
Q: Now the platforms focus on application development. The selling point of equipment depends largely on whether the application is abundant or not. Under the temptation of application market, many developers have a chance to earn money in the job off time. How can companies control their employees?
Mr.Li: I feel it is meaningless for companies to control their employees. Companies should encourage innovation and apply this kind of innovation in the company to create value.
Q: Does the company have its own sales channel? If yes, what experience shall we learn from? How to avoid only waiting for GOOGLE PLAY’s paid downloads to cause a thread?
Mr.Li: We still rely on GOOGLE PLAY’s distribution channel to publish our game. Now there are many channels in China. We can have a try.
Q: Do you have any new points in gaining profits in addition to the two marketing channels- paid download and inside advertising?
Mr.Li: There are high value-added services like game props and equipment. However, truthly speaking, there is no better mode in the current mobile Internet market. We are in the process of explorating and innovating.
Q: Paid software can bring profits to the company. What is the proportion of paid software to free software for the companies’ development? How to weigh against this proportion?
Mr.Li: At present, 95% is free software. We are trying the paid software.
Q: Since free software can not bring obvious profits to the company, what purpose does the company make free software for?
Mr.Li: Free game is to establish the brand in players. We insist to be Android game’s developer. We hope to have our own special series of games in the future.
Q: Does your company have your own industrial chain model planning?
Mr.Li: At present, there is no such big plan. The most important thing is to focus on Android game development. Do our project well and then our company will develop and become strong gradually.