IT firm on the app and app

MixBit lead developer Joshua Garner (left) and developer George Sealy at work in the thriving IT...
MixBit lead developer Joshua Garner (left) and developer George Sealy at work in the thriving IT company's Dunedin office. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
A thriving slice of Silicon Valley in Dunedin is set to get a boost by the city's Gigatown victory.

Video-sharing software maker MixBit was formed and is led by YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley, with offices in San Mateo, in Silicon Valley, and Dunedin.

Its Princes St office, which is home to the company's lead developers, has all the trimmings you would expect of a Silicon Valley office, including bean bags, colourful chairs, a pool table and free food for staff.

Lead developer Joshua Garner said the Dunedin office had expanded substantially in the past year and now had about 10 staff - depending on the number of interns working at any one time.

The company had also changed its name in the past year from Avos to MixBit - the name of its video-sharing app - and Dunedin had become the base for its main developers.

However, the change in the past year was nothing on what Mr Hurley envisaged for the company, with the aim for MixBit to become the go-to app for people wanting to easily create and share professional-looking videos using smartphones.

That would ''definitely'' mean more jobs in the Dunedin office, Mr Garner said.

Developer George Sealy agreed: ''It's being built on that Silicon Valley model, so it could take off and it could take off really fast.''

Mr Sealy said the MixBit iPhone app at present catered more for individual users, but developers were working on a ''crucial'' new release which would make it easier for people to collaborate on videos.

''An example is you go to a birthday party and people are always taking photos and recording video.

''With MixBit, someone can start to pull all that stuff together, put music over the top and [make it look] professional, all in a couple of minutes.''

The new release would also make it easier to share videos on other websites - for instance YouTube.

Despite being on different sides of the globe, the two offices kept in constant touch.

A video stream of the San Mateo office played on a big screen in Dunedin and vice-versa.

If staff wanted to bring up an issue with a colleague across the globe, they only needed to look into a camera and talk.

Mr Garner said the higher speeds that came with Dunedin winning the Gigatown competition would improve the quality of the stream between the two offices.

At present internet speeds, the quality of the stream was affected during heavy use, but when Gigatown came online it would no longer be a problem.


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