Telecommunication service provider and app-maker YouMail announced today that 75 million unique users have taken advantages of its offerings at least once. To put that in perspective, that’s about one-third of the U.S. adult population. In terms of repeat users, the company isn’t doing too shabby either; 17.5 million users now use its apps at least once per month.
Part of YouMail’s appeal is likely its platform-agnostic approach. Unlike a lot of narrowly focused recent startup success stories like Instagram, YouMail’s various apps, which include visual voicemail, call blockers and caller ID apps that provide more advanced functionality than what’s typically available via native carrier offerings, are offered on BlackBerry, Android, iPhone, WebOS, Windows Phone 7 and even Windows Phone 6.5. That has helped it win favor not only with consumers, but with carriers, too, who are increasingly turing to YouMail as a default provider of visual, social voicemail applications.
In an interview with YouMail CEO Alex Quilici, he explained that the company’s milestones signify a turning point, where YouMail is now crossing over into common usage along the lines of some of the most successful web-based businesses.
“To be a top 50 web site in the U.S., you need about 18 million monthly unique visitors – and we’re now just about that level of unique users interacting with YouMail, though in our case many are interacting on the phone vs. a web site,” he said. “That means our brand and service is starting to become mainstream – in the same way that WordPress or Tumblr has, where lots of users visit the site because someone they know or like has created a blog and they want to interact with it.”
For YouMail, the future is about continuing to build out that mainstream growth, which Quilici said is increasingly being driven by Andoird and iOS, whereas at one time most of the company’s registered users were coming from BlackBerry devices. The most popular services on YouMail include smart greetings, which address incoming callers by name, visual caller ID sourced from publicly available information to provide info about callers not found in a user’s phone book, voicemail receipts for outgoing voicemails and ditching of unwanted calls. Quilici told BetaKit that there’s an update coming that’ll make the personal greetings offerings even better and easier.
YouMail has plenty of competition, especially on Android with respect to voicemail and caller ID services, but it has managed to attract a huge following because it continues to work where customers already are. That might not be as exciting as trying to predict the curve and come up with something like an Instagram or a Twitter, but it’s a recipe for success in terms of attracting money and interest from carriers trying to derive more revenue and value opportunities from basic telecommunication services.