We dont cover too many IT services firms in PK because, well, there is one under pretty much every rock you come across and very few of them are committed to the long haul.
Obscure seems to be different though, because they are a young company focused almost exclusively on usability, experience design and online brand management. The CEO Ahmed Shuja is also involved with the IxDC with Adnan Ali and perhaps also Imran Hussein and other UX designers from Lahore. That team put together the World Usability Day event in Lahore recently.
Obscure seems to have a well-rounded team together, in the main consultants being UX Designers, Brand Managers and Interior Decorators, and they’re also doing a good job keeping up blogs to promote their insight and expertise (here’s one). Unfortunately, looking at their portfolio paints a different picture. Its possible that this is because this is an emerging company, but most of their portfolio projects are related more to website design rather than application usability, with the exception of a Corporate Tower project.
UX Design firms will also permanently be judged by a much higher standard compared to other firms. In this sense, unfortunately even a tertiary look at the site reveals some design mistakes. Chief among them is the fact that important content is hidden behind accordian widgets which results in excess clicking (and we know thats bad), their portfolio section has an incredibly distracting image on the right, and the overall "sketchy paper look" aesthetic should have been played up more to make the site visually balanced.
In terms of just having a visually balanced site that presents a good picture of a services firm, Viaduct or Deensoft may be good contenders. In terms of having a unique aesthetic style and layout, Techlogix or Confiz may have my vote. In terms of having a crazy-creative site, Orange Pixel takes the cake and eats the whole thing.
Ofcourse, most sites (and indeed our own site) isnt really a testament to the quality of work a company does, and I’m positive the Obscure team has the talent to make Ux projects work. Kudos for their laser-focus on doing one thing well, good luck to them, and I hope in time more and more firms will emerge in this ever-important area.