The Viva! Vision: Former NFL Players Create ‘App Enablement’ Firm for Athletes, Celebs

Joe Tafoya (left) and Kerry Carter of Viva! Vision, at the AT&T Developer Summit. (Screen shot courtesy AT&T)

Anytime you go to a “developer’s conference” hosted by some large firm, you can pretty much count on at least several instances where groups of geeks are shepherded to the stage for their 15 seconds of fame. Look! The big-company execs will say. Developers who believe in us!

At the recent AT&T Developers Summit ahead of CES, however, there was a twist: During the meet-the-developers segment the audience saw 6-foot-4 Joe Tafoya take the stage and tell a quick tale about how he and some other ex-NFL players were getting into the development game, previewing a cool forthcoming “locker room” app featuring their friend, NBA star Jason Terry.

After shaking hands with some AT&T execs and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Tafoya was gone, but not after causing no small amount of buzz among the thousands in the audience. Ex-NFL guys? Doing sports apps? Cool! And then everyone went back to checking their email.

Tafoya, however, stuck around the summit, wandering the exhibit-hall booths with one of his partners, Kerry Carter, an ex-NFL running back who is still playing in Canada. Towering over most of the real geeks present, Tafoya and Carter were happy to stop and talk about Viva! Vision, a company formed in a unique manner and with a unique purpose. Over several phone and email interviews and some research we have a fuller picture of Viva! and what we think its purpose is: Though Tafoya and co. may not exactly agree with this definition, we see Viva! Vision as not a true app development company but instead an “app enabler.”

What do we mean by that? In Viva! Vision’s case it means that Tafoya and his partners aren’t doing any of the actual coding of apps but instead are bringing to the table their ability to bring people to the table — on one hand, corralling talented technology outsourcing firms to help develop cool, custom apps, and on the other hand bringing in athletes, entertainers and other celebrities who want to maximize their personal brand via online channels. How did this all get started and where might it end up? We’ll need more than a short blog post to tell you.

Next: From the NFL cut line to the command line

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  1. I am truly honored to have this article written. Paul really does a good job on capturing our journey to the mobile industry. We have a great story and I am happy to be sharing it on Mobile Sports Report!

    • Thanks Joe. Readers note that Joe says while he played six years in the NFL, he was an active player for eight years. Believe some of that was on the practice squad. Plus for those keeping track he went to college at Arizona.

    • David Burbidge says

      Congratulations on Viva! Visions and this excellent article. All the very best

      Dave Burbidge

  2. This was a great article indeed. I want tho also thank Joe Tafoya and Team/Viva! Visions for seeing talent in the Smallest places and empowring them to see opportunity in a smarter way like he did with our companies and the Architeckz his team created a TURFIN App Tool for Urban Street Dance Culture to Market a promote our popular style of dance from Oakland,Ca

    Hopefully we can be part of the hackathon at the upcoming SXSW Interactive conference as well?

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