For 10 years now, AVAST has been giving free antivirus protection to home computer users. What started on June 1st 2001 as an innovative step to bring the avast! brand to users around the globe without expensive advertising has worked very well indeed. Over 130 million users are now protected by avast! Free Antivirus and while it may sound like a cliché, even the users who have the free version are very valuable to us.
For starters, it is you, the users of the free version, who give us priceless word-of-mouth advertising. The majority of new users know about AVAST only because it was recommended to them by their friends (hence, we don’t pay for any advertising). You help us to translate the software (avast! is now available in 38 languages and 11 are now being finalized). You help each other and us at the Support Forum and, last but not least, you help us to find new viruses via the CommunityIQ system. Read more…
For those interested in all things Android, I have some exciting news. AVAST Software has acquired ITAgents, the Austrian developer of the Theft Aware mobile phone theft protection and recovery system.
The acquisition strengthens AVAST’s technology base and gives us a hands-on security app designed for today’s Android-powered smartphones. Read more…
The second half of 2011 got off to a great start for AVAST Software (even if it was rough in terms of Prague’s “summer” weather, which been more like an out-of-place autumn). We began the third quarter with a record 165 million user registrations and (not long after launching our avast! Free Antivirus for Mac beta) in July we launched our new business security line. As for what’s next, CNET’s Seth Rosenblatt give a preview of our other upcoming security solutions here.
In other news, research by the AVAST Virus Lab uncovered an alarming trend in Adobe Reader version usage and a surprising percentage of Microsoft XP-based rootkits. Read more…
From the time I started at AVAST Software, I began hearing the name “Bob” a lot, but never saw the guy, and his handle on the avast! Forum – “bob3160″ – sounded to me like some new industry buzz word, a new kind of machine that would change the way we all live. When I finally asked someone about “Bob,” I was shocked. “He’s one of our biggest fans on the user forum, and he helps us with a lot of stuff in the US.” Bob ranks third on the avast! Forum in terms of post count, with over 15,000 as of this writing (about 4,000 posts ahead of our CTO, Ondrej Vlcek). I began to laugh that the ‘avast! secret weapon’ might be a retiree in the southwestern desert of the USA.
Early in 2011, Bob and some other avast! Forum “Evangelists” came to visit us in Prague, and I think we were all affected in some way by his positive demeanor, charismatic personality, warm heart, and sincerity. It made me think that, yes, it’s “bob3160″ and others like him who are indeed the avast! secret weapons. It was an honor to interview Bob, and we hope he returns soon to visit us in Prague. – Jason Mashak
1. How long have you been using avast! antivirus solutions and how influential would you say avast! Forum members have been in their development?
I first discovered avast! in 2003 while looking for a replacement for Norton, which at that time was using my computer more than I was.
After testing quite a few alternatives, I finally settled on avast! since the protection it offered was excellent and it wasn’t a system hog like the others.
It actually allowed me to gain access to my computer again, something I really had not enjoyed for some time.
2. In terms of innovative practices, can you think of any other product or service that has such a feeling of ‘community’ and user-co-development as that fostered by AVAST?
I honestly can’t – and I do belong to several other forums, even though my involvement with the other forums I frequent isn’t the same as it is with the Avast forum. I consider the Avast Forum my home away from home. Read more…
From the time I started working at AVAST, I kept hearing about our avast! Forum “Evangelists” – Community members who have helped us greatly over the years by providing tech support to other users, product feedback (including ideas for improvements), and more. In short, they have been the true heartbeat of AVAST ever since the avast! Forum went LIVE in 2002. As of March, 2011, the top forum evangelist, with almost 55,000 (55 THOUSAND!!!) forum posts, is the Brazil-based user known as “Tech” – known to his family and friends as Lisandro Souza. I was especially interested in interviewing him, as was interested primarily in his motivation for helping AVAST over the years. –Jason Mashak
1. For avast! users who have never visited the avast! Forum, considering that it’s not only a tech-support community, how would you summarize the full range of activity that happens there?
It’s a true Community. We share knowledge, dreams, friendship, professional and leisure readings and thoughts. It’s a very open-minded place, no fanboyism, freedom. There is room for techies and non-techies. You can learn. You can share. You can help and receive help. You can interact with the developers and “interfere” in the future of it in some cases: you really participate. You can rest with some threads about technology and non-avast related. Although, some of us miss the Off Topic forum (sorry Pavel, couldn’t resist…). If you never being in a forum, come, feel the atmosphere!
2. What have been some of the most fulfilling moments for you as an avast! Forum member?
The first troubleshooting with “Vlk” [Ondrej Vlcek, CTO] and Jindrich Kubec [Virus Lab Director]: the professionalism and warm reception caught me! Read more…
For reasons that will be obvious after you read it, we won’t be including this link/summary on our Written about us webpage, but it’s funny enough to at least share it on our blog:
“Anna Nimus” (anonymous) names avast! antivirus a co-conspirator toward global domination – because we have more than one ‘a’ in our name.
(Select [Ctrl] + [F], then type “avast” – it will take you to the comment.)
Didn’t “Anna Nimus” read my recent post “Half the world is enough“? BTW, this article was posted on 01/21/2011… Look at all those ONEs and TWOs… what does all this mean?! ;-)
A few months ago we posted this
to our Written About Us page (a list of summaries and links to recent press coverage), but I wanted to bring attention to it here, as well.
Containing a brief history of what drove the two men to create software amid major political turmoil and economic transitions (i.e., regained Czechoslovak independence), the article highlights some of the problems they faced as a fledgling company in a new global environment. As well, it points to the difficult choices they made in terms of an innovative business model, which helped them to attain roles as world-class leaders in the antivirus industry.
For those who may wonder what AVAST Software’s plans are for 2011 (and beyond)… pay special attention to the last paragraph.