Peel announced today that its smart universal remote app has reached 100 million total global users in just under 30 months, a pace that only a handful of Silicon Valley's fastest growing companies have managed to achieve.
In comparison, Facebook took more than 4 1/2 years to acquire its first 100 million users and Twitter and Tumblr more than 5 years. More recently, highly social apps such as Line and Instagram have reached the milestone in 19 months and 26 months respectively. Peel's accomplishment is just behind chat app Tango's 29 months and just ahead of Skype's 32 months.
"Our plan at the beginning of this year was to triple our overall user base to 125 million and we are ahead of pace to accomplish that goal," said Thiru Arunachalam, CEO and co-founder of Peel. "Demand in the US as well as in India and Asia has really surprised us. We are now the clear global leader in smart home control."
Arunachalam, a graduate of National Institute of Technology Tiruchirappalli (NITT) who previously worked at Apple, added that Peel is now preloaded on a variety of popular Android smartphones and tablets sold in India. These include the Galaxy S4 and S5 from Samsung and Xolo's Q2100, which was launched earlier this month, is available for Rs.13, 499 only and includes a fingerprint sensor. The Peel Smart Remote app, which already has more than 1 million activated users in India, will also soon be available on phones from Spice and Celkon.
"We would like to take the opportunity to congratulate Peel on reaching the coveted milestone of 100 million users," said Prashant Bindal, CEO, Spice Mobility. "We are proud to be associated with such an innovative technology partner as Peel."
Peel works with 3,500 brands of TVs, including popular LG and Samsung models, and 600 set-top boxes, including those from Airtel, Tata Sky, Dish TV, Hathway, DEN and Siti Cable, along with air conditioners and other appliances. For Indian consumers, Peel features TV listings from WhatsOnIndia.
Earlier this month Peel announced that its rapid growth in the smart home control space had attracted $50 million in strategic investment from Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.
To date, Peel users have generated more than 50 billion smart remote commands, and paired 60 million televisions, 20 million set-top boxes and 2 million air conditioners with the app. Peel counts as a user anyone who has initiated registration in its app.
"Controlling your TV experience - and eventually your entire home - from your smartphone will soon be as common in India as using your phone as a camera," predicted Arunachalam.
This past summer, Peel launched its Peel.in Platform, which allows TV networks to share a unique tune-in URL on Twitter and Facebook. It has been used by US networks from HBO and Showtime to Sundance and the Emmys to promote TV shows. Users who click on these links can either tune-in directly if they have the Peel app on their device, or set a calendar reminder if they don't. Peel has plans to expand the Peel.in platform to India networks in the near future.