Many people know Ally Kazmucha as an editor for iMore, one of the leading online resources for all things Apple. What most people don’t know is, in addition to writing and editing content for iMore she is also owner of The Pod Drop in Michigan City, and co-owner of AnoStyle. Ally took some time out of her busy schedule to chat about who she is, what she does, and where she’s going in the world of technology.
Ally’s fascination with technology originated years ago. She remembers taking apart her first phone, a Motorola flip-phone, and the interest didn’t stop there. “I’ve always been fascinated with phones and gadgets, so technology is something I just kind of fell into.” Ally attended Purdue University where she took several computer science and engineering courses but ultimately ended up deciding to obtain a degree in finance and accounting.
Ally still had an avid fascination with technology and frequently posted on the iMore forums. She was later asked to write content for iMore’s website. Three years later Ally is the how-to, jailbreak, and DIY editor for iMore. She takes great pride in the work she and her fellow writers do. “You have to be able to produce killer content, not just review random apps. We have an amazing editing staff, a blend of male and female, and across all our sites, our people are just astounding.” Her favorite part of writing for iMore is the ability to reach out and help people. “I’ve received lengthy emails from people thanking me for the content posted on iMore, because it’s helped them open their own repair shop or helped someone completely lost in technology on how to use the basics of an iPhone or iPad. Since technology is such a big part of everyday life it really means a lot to people, and even more to me that I can help them in that way on a daily basis.”
PXLFIX, a repair shop that Ally and a previous business partner founded, was her first experience in retail cellular phone repair. Ally later decided to merge PXLFIX with an existing repair company and became The Pod Drop of Michigan City. The Pod Drop as a whole has over 10 locations across the US, and each one purchases many of their wholesale repair parts for iPhone, iPod and iPad from eTech Parts. Ally even recommends eTechParts.com to customers and readers looking to purchase parts and repair devices themselves. She looks forward to the future of The Pod Drop: “The Pod Drop’s main goal is to continue growing and adding even more credibility by making sure stores are run by knowledgeable owners and techs.”
AnoStyle, Ally’s other business venture, adds an anodized finish in over 12 different color options to the iPhone 5 and iPad mini. The replacement colored layer placed on the devices during anodization is 40-50% thicker than the finish of the iPhone 5 or iPad mini making the device more resistant to nicks and scratches. “Our goal for AnoStyle is to become a name in technology for corporate and custom branding. We currently offer AnoStyle services on the iPhone 5 for $249 and the iPad Mini for $299, but we don’t want to stop there. There aren’t a lot of options for this service, and I think we’re the perfect people to offer it because at our core we are repair experts.”
Ally admits to being a victim of gender discrimination in a past position, “I had a really negative experience with an Engineering internship, which ultimately led me to change my major in college. Engineering is a very male-dominated field; I don’t want to say you’re looked down upon but it’s much harder to be in the tech industry as a woman because people do look at you differently.”
Based on all her experience in the technology industry, Ally has some advice for the future woman in tech:
“Don’t ever let people underestimate you or undervalue your opinion. You have to enter into jobs and business agreements with people who respect you and trust your decisions. When people try to take that away from you, the trust and respect in a professional relationship is gone. It’s vital to find a support group of people who value and respect you.”
Achieving success in three separate arenas of the technology industry, Ally Kazmucha is an editor for iMore, owner of The Pod Drop in Michigan City, and co-owner of AnoStyle. She not only opens the door for women in technology, but for anyone with the same drive and desires to gain success in the industry.