Born in Yerevan, Armenia, Narek Gevorgyan studied applied mathematics at Yerevan State University and started his career as a software engineer. He built a software development shop that helped 100+ customers, mostly from Silicon Valley, to tackle their engineering.
In 2017, he wanted to make crypto more accessible, so he created CoinStats, now one of the most popular crypto apps on the market with 300,000 active users and over 80,000 5-star reviews.
Below is our exclusive interview with Narek on the challenges of building a popular app for crypto users, how he became involved in blockchain, and where he believes the industry is headed in the future.
What is your professional background and how/when did you get into crypto?
NG: I have an engineering background. Used to work as a software engineer for a big company. Then, I was running Inomma for 3 years before CoinStats, which was a software development as a service agency. We were helping Silicon Valley startups with their engineering. Through that period, we used to develop and pivot our own ideas and had about 4 products (which did not work out eventually because of different reasons).
I got into crypto after seeing crazy gains in Ripple (XRP) in May 2017. If I’m not mistaken it went up around 20x during that month. I just decided to get on the train.
Tell us about why you decided to develop CoinStats?
NG: It was Summer 2017 when I invested in a few cryptocurrencies myself and caught myself multiple times a day using my MacBook calculator to count how much I own in dollars because the market was so volatile. I’m like, there should be an app for doing this, I downloaded some of the apps available back then and all of them seemed to be pretty hard to use for a crypto newbie like I was. Then we took a week, creating a very simple app, using 3rd party free APIs, where you enter how much you own of each cryptocurrency and it shows your total net worth.
I believe we unintentionally developed an app for newbies (because we were too) and it appeared that 95 percent of people in crypto back then and during 6-12 months after that were newbies like we were. It took us 3 months before we started to get thousands of downloads organically by just using some basic App Store optimization tactics and referral program.
After that, we started to take CoinStats more serious and eventually moved to work on CoinStats full time with almost the whole team of Inomma. Now, we connect to over 300 exchanges for price updates, have huge and secure infrastructure on the backend to support millions of users, and one of the best products in the market.
What are the benefits of using CoinStats as opposed to other portfolio tracking apps?
NG: CoinStats is significantly easier to use and feature-rich at the same time, with most of the features being free. Some competitors claim that they are completely free, but in fact, the services they offer are also free in the CoinStats app.
I think the top feature that differentiates us from others is the ability to connect all your wallets and exchange accounts (you can even connect your hardware wallets in less than 10 seconds), get automatic notification where there is something happening on your accounts, starting from significant price changes, and ending with order fills on your exchange. On top of that, we offer a quick trade feature on your connected exchange account which allows you to easily swap any coin to any other coin with the best available price, even when they don’t have a direct trading pair.
On top of everything, we have worked really hard to make our news feed relevant and useful 24 hours a day. We are partnering up with around 10 news agencies who manually pick the best news happening at the exact point of time to show to our users.
Tell us about the Pro features of CoinStats. Why should a user consider upgrading?
NG: Portfolio Analytics, transaction notifications, order fill notifications, pump alerts, etc. All these are pretty much self-explanatory, but the one PRO feature we released recently and I really love is CoinStats Insights. We aggregate data and show a bird’s-eye view on what’s happening for each of the top 50 coins, like what is coin XYZ dominance in CoinStats portfolios, or what percentage of users sold/bought that coin last 24 hours today. Sometimes we find a really surprising correlation between CoinStats Insights and market prices.
What can you tell us about the product roadmap? What upcoming features are you most excited about rolling out?
NG: We have a great vision we’re moving towards is to become an interface to crypto. We want to create a great user experience for people to on-ramp into crypto, store coins in the wallet they want to use, easily buy/sell from an exchange they want to use, and track their investments. All from one easy to use interface.
What are the biggest challenges of building an app for crypto users?
NG: Right now, the biggest challenge is that the market is very small and there are not many new people entering the market. On top of that, the competition is huge compared to market size. I believe that is going to change next year as we see further developments in blockchain space.
What other projects or blockchain developments are you most excited about?
NG: I’m getting excited about pretty much any DeFi product, like blockchain loans. On top of that non-fungible tokens are astonishing too. I believe people will tokenize pretty much any asset, starting from real-estate and ending with stars in the sky.
Do you have any blockchain and/or crypto predictions for 2020 and beyond?
NG: Not financial advice of course, but I tell all of my friends that we will see BTC at $80,000 in 2020. There are a lot of developments going on around Bitcoin, like Bakkt’s launch and the expected Bitcoin halving. Secondly, some charts and technical analysis hint that we might see another short hype next year. Of course, if BTC goes up we will see a handful of altcoin prices rise depending on their developments and progress then.
What are the biggest obstacles for the mainstream adoption of crypto?
NG: We have already seen one mainstream adoption in January 2018, pretty much everyone in the world was talking about crypto back then. CoinStats was a top searched keyword on US app store. But, it was purely based on speculation and did not last long. For true blockchain mainstream adoption we just need one single DApp which would show the significant advantage of blockchain versus centralized technologies and it needs to be used by millions of people. Unfortunately, we don’t have anything like that ready right now.
More information about Coin Stats:
- CoinStats Website
- CoinStats iOS Download
- CoinStats Google Play Download
- CoinStats Twitter
- CoinStats Telegram