Premium design and development

We are a premium software team designing and developing mobile apps, complex websites, and enterprise software. 

We combine a design-first philosophy with deep expertise in sophisticated communications, security and web services integration.

We develop beautiful and effective mobile apps and websites for enterprise customers and entrepreneurs looking to build their dreams. We are approachable, skilled, artistic and even a bit nerdy.

 
$50,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2010
Show all +
Vancouver, Canada
headquarters
  • Two Tall Totems
    #305 1166 Alberni Street
    Vancouver, BC V6E 1A5
    Canada
    888.315.4476

Portfolio

Key clients: 

FortisBC, Shoes.com, Harbour Air, Pixels, City of Surrey, Revols, Yervana, Mojio, AMA

Revols

Raising over $2.5 million dollars on Kickstarter, Revols sold 12,000 earphones before the product was even released. The customizable earphones molds to the unique shape of your ears to deliver the best sound quality possible with the highest level of comfort.

Two Tall Totems built the interactive iOS and Android app behind Revols. The app connects to the earphones through Bluetooth technology, triggering the molding process with a step by step guide. The Equalizer feature offers preset acoustics that allow the listener to choose between different music genres (Rock, R&B, Acoustic etc.). It also allows them to customize their own EQ settings and save it as a preset.

The Soundscape feature is a noise cancelling technology that takes the listener’s physical environment into consideration. Whether they’re on an airplane, train or outdoors, the listener can adjust the setting on the app and optimize the sound for any situation.

Working hand in hand with the...

Harbour Air

Two Tall Totems has built and maintained both a customer-facing and maintenance app for the Harbour Air Group, the largest all-seaplane company in the world. The Harbour Air app makes it easier for travellers to reserve flights, and check the status of arrivals and departures.

For their Operations staff, Two Tall Totems developed an iOS app integrated into a backend maintenance system that enables more cost-effective and reliable tracking of all airplane maintenance. This app saves the company both time and money, while reducing paperwork for both mechanics and managers.

 

Yervana

Two Tall Totems designed and built the iOS app for Yervana; A marketplace where travellers and adventure seekers can connect with local guides to partake in catered and customized activities. Through the mobile app, users can find authentic and personal experiences unattainable by looking in a guide book. They will be able to meet new people and enjoy excursions, all with a local flavour.

We’ve designed and developed an intuitive interface where users can search for activities based on city, event category, date, and price. Within the explore view, users can scroll through a list of experiences based on their given criteria and schedule adventures with hosts through a sleek calendar booking feature.

The Yervana app offers an entirely new way for travellers to plan their next adventure.

Mojio

For Mojio, one of the leading platforms in the connected car economy, Two Tall Totems has built iOS and Android apps that connect Mojio’s 3G+GPS device to drivers’ smartphones and smart devices. Two Tall Totems developed two iOS and Android apps (as well as two Apple Watch apps) that are deeply integrated into the Mojio platform, and leverage Two Tall Totems expertise in UI/UX and design-first philosophy. One of these apps (Gauge) works like a personal mechanic, putting everything from basic maintenance reminders, to diagnosing car trouble, to being ready for vehicle recalls in a driver’s control. Another app (Cloak) keeps a driver’s automobile secure by tracking its location, so it can found if stolen, or found if “lost” in a parking lot.

Sengled

Snap by Sengled was experiencing high return rates in their North American division and approached Two Tall Totems to help remedy this. After conducting extensive user testing, our designers analyzed the feedback, and revamped the user experience for the Snap app. We implemented a design that was clear, easy to use, and intuitive decreasing Sengled’s Snap returns by 50%.

City of Surrey

The City of Surrey approached Two Tall Totems to assist with the momentous mission of moving all of their citizen facing services that had existed on multiple unconnected websites and back ends to one portal. This portal allows a user to log in with one user name and password and access all of the City of Surrey’s online offerings in one place. Two Tall Totems was chosen to lead parts of this project due to their experience with agile development as well as their skills with Node js. Working closely with the City of Surrey, Two Tall Totems has completed development on two important components of the portal. The Fire Safety App and the Parking Ticket App. The Fire Safety App allows licensed professionals to apply, submit and have approved a building’s fire safety proposal. The Parking Ticket App allows a user who received a parking ticket to pay their parking ticket online.

Reviews

Sort by

iOS & Android Development for Custom Wireless Headphones App

"Everything was exactly what we had asked for." 

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Aug. 2016 - Sept. 2017
Project summary: 

Two Tall Totems developed an app for iOS and Android, focusing on user experience management. They created a customization process that enables wireless communication between users and the product.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Montreal, Canada
Co-Founder, Custom Headphones App
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app is going through testing and will soon be released into market. Working quickly and efficiently, they were able to meet all the expectations and deadlines. While they keep growing their QA department, their highly skilled team and open work culture draws clients.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I work at the company that builds custom-fit earphones.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Two Tall Totems?

We wanted to create an app that would allow customers to go through the process of customizing earphones, ensuring a satisfactory level of user experience, so we were looking for a company to help us with that.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They helped us build an app for iOS and Android. The primary feature of the app is a customization process where users will follow the guidelines of the app to open up the physical packaging of the earphones and go through all the steps to choose the size that fits them best. Our guidelines are unique – at first, they're easy and then they get harder. The point is to go from an ordinary fit to the one that is customized for a particular user in the exact shape of their ear. The app will allow them to put the earphones in their ears and get to a point where they're satisfied with the fit. They can also click on a button and communicate with the earphones wirelessly, which triggers a harder process. The app has many components, such a Bluetooth component, a user experience component, and more. 

What is the team composition? 

Initially, we worked with two founders, one of whom was our senior point of contact. We also had a project manager and worked closely with other members of their team. 

How did you come to work with them?

We reached out to 7–10 different app firms, stating the criteria we were looking for: we wanted to find people with experience in consumer hardware, capable of delivering a professional product in a short time. Ideally, we wanted to work with a Canadian company (there is a tax credit if you work with Canadians on a Research and Development project). That left us with 2–3 names. We visited their office in Vancouver (we're based in Montreal) and were impressed with their team and their culture – they seemed to be a perfect fit for us.

What is the status of this engagement? 

We started working with them in August 2016 and the bulk of the project was completed in September 2017. They're still providing maintenance and work on a few minor things.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement? 

We tested the app on users and we'll be releasing it soon. With every new round of testing, we noted how much time users spent going through the customization process – if it took them less time and they succeeded at it more often, that was a success.

How did they perform from a project management standpoint? 

We've been happy with them from the beginning. As a start-up, we're making changes all the time, but they've been very versatile and flexible. They're fast, organized, and efficient. Their team is amazing and if there was a delay, it was caused by us. 

What did you find most impressive about them?

I've never met a team that's so happy and open. It feels like one big family. Those are the people we want to work with.

Are there any areas they could improve?

The QA [Quality Assurance] is something they can improve (this observation is not coming from me but from some people on our team). When we worked with them, they didn't have an internal team that was responsible for QA. Since the product is going out into the market and will be used by different devices, QA is important. They're aware of that and they're currently bringing on internal and external resources to help with that. But it wasn't available to us throughout the project.

5.0
Overall Score With the exception of QA, which they're working on right now, everything was perfect.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    The only time they didn't meet the deadline was when we required last-minute changes. They did everything we asked them.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    It's the first project I've done in this field, so it's hard to say. We spent a lot of money, but it was worth it.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Everything was exactly what we had asked for. They made changes right away to make sure we're satisfied.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    We had a great experience working with them.

UI/UX Mobile & Web Design for Smart-Lighting Solution

"Their capacity to meet all of our needs was an important factor in our hiring decision."

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Apr. 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Two Tall Totems revamped the UI and UX of two mobile apps to register and integrate Bluetooth-controlled products. Additional support included the design of a web portal and commercial site development.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Vancouver, Canada
Tao Su
Head of Development, Sengled Canada
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app’s improved and streamlined onboarding mechanism saw a significant decrease in item return rates, from 30% to 20%. The detailed and modern design received internal praise. Multiple development teams offered quality service, pleasant interaction, and competitive rates.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the head of development at Sengled Canada. Our company offers smart lighting solutions for security and entertainment purposes. We develop devices that combine LED light bulbs with Bluetooth cameras and speakers.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Two Tall Totems?

Our remote app team lacked the necessary resources and personnel to tackle all of our design needs. We hired Two Tall Totems, a renowned local agency, for external support with the initial design stages, as well as app development.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Our initial project involved designing the UX and UI for one of our products’ mobile apps. The snap security camera is a smart light that can be installed on front doors to monitor visitors. It sends alerts about suspicious activity. We’d found that a significant number of product returns resulted from users’ inability to set up the device. Two Tall Totems has spearheaded the design for device onboarding and registration, making it notably more streamlined. They studied the product, did extensive UX redesign, and supported our UI design efforts.

Later on, they improved our website, which was primarily a design task. The web portal was a relatively smaller undertaking compared to the UX and UI work. They helped us implement most of the sprints they designed. Currently, we're working on a new app that integrates all of our devices, including other Bluetooth-controlled smart bulbs. Both apps they’ve developed are for iOS and Android.

What is the team dynamic?

The three- or four-person UX/UI team for our initial engagement included Jatin Jia, the lead designer, as well as a project manager and two other designers. Later on, we worked with a different design and development team.

How did you come to work with Two Tall Totems?

We found them via a reference from one of my coworkers, who had worked with them previously. Initial trials went well, and they offered competitive rates, so we went forward with the engagement.

How much have you invested with them?

So far, we’ve spent $CAD 70,000 ($54,829). Our yearly costs should average between $CAD 80,000-90,000 ($63,088-$70,974).

What is the status of this engagement?

We began working together in April 2017, and our engagement is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Before their involvement, we had a very high rate of returns, around 30%. The biggest contributor to that return rate was the difficulty users experienced with set up. After Two Tall Totems improved the onboarding process, that rate dropped to around 20%. This reduction is the most obvious and significant measurement of their contributions. Although we haven’t gotten specific feedback from users, our internal app team has praised the detailed and modern design.

How did Two Tall Totems perform from a project management standpoint?

We exclusively contacted the senior designer and the project manager, and usually communicate through Slack. We have a specific channel where we can post comments and feedback. In addition, our weekly meeting via phone call helps us follow up on issues and keep track of tasks that are in progress. They also share documents detailing how long they've spent on each project and estimated timelines. We have mostly soft deadlines at this point. They’ve adhered to our budget and occasionally have kept below it.

What did you find most impressive about them?

One of the great things about Two Tall Totems is their full range of abilities. We found this preferable to working with several agencies that specialized in different tasks. As a sizable agency, their service offerings include graphic design, app design, UI/UX, website design, and development.

Their capacity to meet all of our needs was an important factor in our hiring decision. Their work is high quality, compared to their competitors. We recently replaced a different agency that had worked on our commercial website with an in-house designer, for example.

Are there any areas they could improve?

The main issue we faced was the need for several iterations of work to render a good design. After they provided proofs in the initial phase, we would select the one that worked best and give them our feedback. This process often took longer than we expected. Putting more effort into improving the quality of initial work could prove more efficient.

5.0
Overall Score They've been very helpful and nice, and we’ve had a pleasant experience working together. They handle issues that arise professionally.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They have been very good with scheduling meetings and meeting our expectations regarding project management.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Their work was cost effective compared to most competitors, but still expensive compared to in-house designers.
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    We occasionally had issues with the initial work, but through collaboration, we eventually improved it to meet our standards.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

iOS Mobile App Dev for Outdoor Activities App

"The app is smooth, easy to use, and functions as expected."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Mar. 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Two Tall Totems designed and developed an iOS app to act as an outdoor activities marketplace for experts and guests. They created a design mockup, built UI/UX, and engineered the backend.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Vancouver, Canada
Project Manager, Marketing Agency
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

While not yet launched, the app has received very good feedback so far and functions well. Two Tall Totems' capabilities are strong and their work is high-quality. Even though the project has grown in scope, their small team has managed the project changes well. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I am a project manager at a web development company. The project I'm working on is a marketplace for experts in outdoor activities to take guests along on adventures.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Two Tall Totems?

We needed an iOS developer who could both build an application and understand the marketplace.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Starting from an initial document of our requirements for how the app would function in the marketplace, Two Tall Totems developed UX, UI, and the backend structure for the iOS app, with bug identification and feedback processes throughout. They also created an InVision mockup that we could use to demonstrate the idea to clients and customers. The minimum viable product created functions as a marketplace where guests can search for outdoor activities with experts, pay for the experiences, and write reviews.

What is the team dynamic?

Their team in total is about 35 people and growing, and they had at least five people representing the various sides of our project in meetings.

How did you come to work with Two Tall Totems?

We reviewed about 15 companies, narrowed our selection to two here in Vancouver, and eventually selected Two Tall Totems because they had the expertise and knowledge base to accomplish our goals.

How much have you invested with them?

We've spent in the range of $250,000 to $500,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

The project began in March 2017 and is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The app is smooth, easy to use, and functions as expected. There have been some really good reviews from those who have seen it, although it hasn't yet launched. Two Tall Totems delivered on time and on budget.

How did Two Tall Totems perform from a project management standpoint?

The project manager we have interacted with has done a decent job. We hold meetings once or twice each week, communicate frequently over email, and use Jira and Slack for project management purposes.

What did you find most impressive about them?

Their ability to manage the project as it grows in scope is impressive. I was nervous about using a small team because I expected our work to balloon quickly, but they have had the resources to accommodate us while catering to their other clients as well.

Are there any areas they could improve?

Communication is very important to us, and I have been working with them on ways they can improve in that area.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

We were very prepared compared to other clients they had worked with, which made things flow smoothly.

5.0
Overall Score I'm really happy with them.
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They have stayed on track with their original time estimates.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They're not cheap, but we got really good value for the money.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    The quality is very high.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Application Development for Online Footwear Retailer

"Two Tall Totems worked consistently with our side in order to make sure that we were all on the same page."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Jan. 2015 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Two Tall Totems developed the client's iOS application along with early-stage wireframing. The development work was done with Objective-C language.

The Reviewer
 
201-500 Employees
 
Vancouver, Canada
Technical Experience Director at Shoes.com
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The client speaks highly of Two Tall Totem's agility and problem-solving throughout the project. Although design capabilities could be improved according to the client, Two Tall Totems developed a well-architected application.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

shoes.com is an online shoe retailer in North America. I am the Technical Experience Director of the company. I handle the customer-facing technology. I was involved in this project together with our Director of Innovation and Chief Information Officer.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Two Tall Totems?

We needed to build a native application for the Canadian part of our business, shoes.ca. It was meant to extend the customer experience beyond the desktop PC.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Two Tall Totems was involved in developing our iOS application. This was our only project with them. We did the UI/UX [user interface/user experience] design in-house, but Two Tall Totems provided some wireframing.

How did you come to work with Two Tall Totems?

We weren't looking for a large shop, but rather a mid-tier one with a good reputation. Two Tall Totems was recommended by our Director of Software Development, who had done some work with Two Tall Totems in the past. We considered a few other options.

How much have you invested with Two Tall Totems?

The total cost of Two Tall Totems' services was between $25,000 and $50,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with Two Tall Totems at the beginning of 2015. We still work together on-and-off, on a support capacity for our application.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

Upon delivery, Two Tall Totems did a full code handover. We reviewed all of the Objective-C code and were pretty happy with how everything was architected. Two Tall Totems worked consistently with our side in order to make sure that we were all on the same page. What's missing, on our end, is how to market the app correctly, which doesn't speak to the quality of Two Tall Totems' work.

How did Two Tall Totems perform from a project management standpoint?

I can't speak very much to that because the main person overseeing the project is no longer with our company. To my understanding, it all moved forward pretty well, and we were happy with the timelines.

What did you find most impressive about Two Tall Totems?

I appreciated Two Tall Totems' agility. With any development project, there will be several roadblocks to overcome, but Two Tall Totems did a good job of finding different solutions. They usually offered more than one approach for any major hurdle that we came across.

Are there any areas Two Tall Totems could improve?

Two Tall Totems could improve their design capabilities. The strategy side was pretty solid, and they are more of a development shop than a design one.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer