16 January 2015
Happy new year! We’re already two weeks into 2015 and time seems only to accelerate, so before any more time passes let’s look back at 2014 and then discuss briefly the year ahead.
2014 was all about building product, watching how people use it, plowing what we learned back into the next release, and iterating quickly. Along the way we began laying the foundation of the business.
The two of us got a whole lot done in a short amount of time (see the timeline below), but were slowed a bit in the last quarter of the year by two big distractions: Charlie’s cycling accident in late September (hospital stay, broken ribs, separated shoulder, partially collapsed lung, etc.) and the sale of Charlie’s last company Spanning to EMC in October (lots of time with lawyers and VC’s). But by December we were again firing on all cylinders and accelerating into 2015.
Numerous in 2014:
|May 1:||Launched Numerous 1.0 in the App Store.|
|May 14:||Launched Numerous 1.0.3 (Celsius temps, better sharing and notifications)|
|Jun 17:||Launched Numerous 1.1 (IFTTT and Zapier support, Google signin)|
|Jul 22:||Reached 10,000 registered users|
|Aug 25:||Closed a $700k round of seed funding|
|Sep 29:||Began work on the Numerous Platform|
|Oct 1:||Launched Numerous 2 (iOS 8 support, HealthKit, Today widget, iCloud signin, AirPlay, and iPhone 6/6+)|
|Nov 18:||Began work on Numerous for Apple Watch|
|Nov 20:||Launched Numerous for iPad (also new graphs)|
|Dec 11:||Began work on Numerous for Android|
|Dec 17:||Hired our first employee: Colin Loretz, Lead Platform Engineer|
The coming year is about finding, as the kids say these days, “product-market fit”. Until now we haven’t had a good answer for the simple if grammatically suspect question, “Who is Numerous for?”
Until now we’ve had a grab bag of different types of numbers in the product—things like temperatures, stock prices, countdown timers, distances, Health Kit metrics, etc., but no coherent theme. To address that, we’ve done two things: one technical and one not.
On the product front, we’ve been working on the Numerous Platform. Essentially it’s a way for third parties and us to quickly add new types of numbers—channels—to Numerous without having to build them into the app directly and then wait for Apple’s approval of a new version. What this will allow us to do is quickly build a set of channels targeted specifically at a target market. Which leads me to the nontechnical part: marketing. We've identified two markets to go after, starting with Startup CEO’s.
It was in his role as a startup CEO that Charlie first felt the need for a product like Numerous and decided to build it. We have a strong network of contacts in the space, including both CEO’s and investors, and are spending lots of time with those people to understand what it would take to make Numerous a killer app for them. (If you meet that description and we haven’t talked to you yet, please get in touch so we can set up an interview!)\
As it turns out, startup CEO’s not only care about business metrics and KPI’s but also spend a lot of time cycling, running, skiing, and working out, which are the core activities for our second target market: Active/Outdoor.
The active/outdoor market is a natural choice for us since millions of runners, cyclists, skiers, and surfers rely on myriad metrics to inform their activities and utilize technology to track them. With the right data, Numerous would be a compelling solution for this large market. To this end, we'll be activating Strava and Snow Report channels when the next version of the app goes live in about two weeks.
Armed with a set of requirements gathered from our interviews (the first round of which we’ve just completed) and a platform that enables us to quickly build the channels to address the requirements (which went into beta this week), we’ll soon have a product tailored to specific markets. We’ll test it in those markets, see how it does, and go where the results lead us.
This year we’re also expanding our platform footprint to include Android, and maybe more importantly, Apple Watch. We believe Apple Watch may well define “wearables” just as iPhone defined “smartphones”, and that Numerous could be the killer app for Apple Watch.
Finally, we plan to make some money in 2015. We’ll be exploring different potential sources of revenue by launching our first premium channel and our first premium content package and may also investigate advertising.
If all goes well, we’ll find a market for which Numerous is a killer app. If so, we’ll look to raise a Series A with which to build our capacity to address it.
Numerous in 2015:
Charlie & John
January 16, 2015