PageCloud is a new professional website creation tool. PageCloud aims to bring true desktop publishing to the web for the first time. Here is our recent interview with Craig Fitzpatrick, Founder and CEO of PageCloud:
Q: Tell us your startup story and something more about PageCloud?
A: PageCloud started as a hobby – me simply scratching a technological itch. After being head of products for several software companies over the years, I had thought for about 10 years that there was something fundamentally broken about the Web. I’d seen the computer industry go through several watershed moments, like the birth of e-mail, the birth of desktop publishing, the mainstream adoption of the Web, the e-commerce boom, the birth of social media… With that perspective, I thought it was pretty ridiculous that we can land a rocket on a moving asteroid, but you still have to be a coder to put up a website.
I remembered the good old days around the proliferation of desktop publishing, which made Bill Gates’ original dream of “a PC on every desktop” come true. Desktop publishing was the killer app that made computers useful to people outside big corporations. When that happened, the PC industry absolutely exploded. Many years later, the Web came along and got stuck in “programmers only” mode, where regular folks were pretty much limited to filling out forms and profiles on the ‘net, but couldn’t really “create” the way they could in desktop publishing. And that’s a shame. Because developers are less than 1% of the population. Which means the other 99.x% are basically experiencing a forms-only experience on the Web. What would the Web look like if everyone who used a computer could just fire it up and share some content with the rest of humanity? This will be a world changing moment. What if content was just content, regardless of whether it was on your desktop or in the cloud? Isn’t the distinction between a page, a site, a document, or just a pile of photos someone stuck up on the Web rather academic? To me, it should all just be the same thing. Indistinguishable.
Q: What is your main differentiator?
A: Over the last 10 years, a lot of companies have tried to improve the publishing experience on the Web. They’ve all failed. All of them. That’s not to say that they don’t have lots of users. There are a few billion dollar companies on that list. But no-one has been able to re-create that profoundly accessible desktop publishing experience of old. As a result, adoption of visual publishing tools that approximate that experience, have been pretty niche. When someone finally gets it right, publishing content on the global human network called the Web will absolutely explode like we’ve never seen before.
As a long time user experience guy, I can tell you proudly that PageCloud is the first to nail it.
Not to trivialize it, because it’s actually critical, but I’d say user experience is the #1 differentiator. If you look at the feature lists of any web builder, it’s the same: build pages, build sites, upload images, have an e-commerce widget. If you look at ALL of their messaging, it’s the same too: “Free/cheap/easy”. What they don’t tell you is that free is only free if your time is worthless. And by “anyone can do it” – they still mean pretty technical people. PageCloud is different in a couple key ways:
- it’s not about “what” we allow you to do, it’s about “how” we allow you to do it. It’s the “how” that matters.
- we don’t view this as just being about websites – we view this as a larger problem. It’s time that everyone with a computer be able to create, publish and share content on the web, for personal or for business, with complete creative freedom.
Q: PageCloud is a browser-based app that integrates with user’s operating system, tell us something more?
A: During the development of PageCloud, several world-firsts were accomplished. PageCloud is the ONLY app to allow designers to go directly from Photoshop to the Web with no intermediate steps. It integrates with all your desktop apps to allow you to do seemingly simply things like copy layer groups out of Photoshop and paste them on your page directly. You can go to iTunes and drag an album onto a page and all the songs in that album will upload. You can pull a photo library from iPhoto and all the photos will magically appear on your page. These all seem like simple things, but the alternative is some kind of file-upload-media-library-ftp-file-picker mess that the rest of the products out there have stopped short at. It’s the only app that lets you grab (drag or copy) web widgets off any other site like YouTube, EventBrite, any e-commerce cart, and drop it on your page and it all just automagically works. These simple things were VERY complex to achieve. No-one has pulled it off before and for the foreseeable future, these advancements will only be found in PageCloud.
Q: Who do you see as your primary target audience?
A: Long term, our vision is that every human should be able to contribute to the Web with complete creative freedom. However, in the short term, we know that professional designers stand the most to gain from PageCloud’s advancements. It frees them from either having to learn to hand-code templates, or partner with someone who can. It can quadruple their margins in building their sites, and cut their time by 75%. Designers are the gateway to the business Web, and we make their lives pretty wonderful.
Q: What is your main goal at the moment and when do you plan to launch PageCloud?
A: We are currently in pre-sale mode. Until our early Summer public release, you can pre-purchase PageCloud for a site for $99/year (= $8.25/month). This early-bird pricing represents at least 65% off. We also lock in your pricing for as long as you are a subscriber. And, we provide you with a special sharable link. If you successfully refer 3 other subscribers, we refund your credit card for the full amount, as a special thank you for helping us out. People can subscribe at our website.Activate Social Media: