A new Estonian company to watch is Pult.io. In a nutshell, the service provides users an easy way to control any internet enabled screen through a smartphone without any cryptic setup issues. The company has recently gotten some hype at the TechCrunch Baltics event in Riga, and also joined Seedcamp earlier this month.
The most refreshing thing about Pult happens even before you start streaming anything. Rather than setting up an account and waiting for a confirmation email, Pult skips all of that nonsense; just by going to Pult.io on your TV or computer’s browser generates a random four letter code. You then go to Pult.io in your smartphone’s browser and then plug in the code. Just by doing that the two devices are linked, even if they’re not on the same network, and the webapp gives you control to several streaming and content services.
Once the two devices are linked you can browse through Youtube and Vimeo videos, check out pictures on Picasa and Flickr, go through slides on Slideshare, or even hit up Facebook. If you’re streaming a Youtube video on your main screen, for example, you can also still use your phone to look for the next video to play. The service is tight, convenient, and well executed.
According to co-founder Andrus Raudsalu, the idea behind Pult came out of real life issue. “Remo [Tiigirand] has a summerhouse in Estonia’s Muhu island. He wanted to watch TV there, but over the air channels have poor coverage. And his internet provider does not provide pay-TV channels. So he was trying to figure out a way how to get his pay-tv subscription from home and stream it on his TV in his summerhouse. And then it stuck us how much streamable content every one of us actually has, and how hard it is for non-technical person to get any of his to his TV screen.”
The team is working towards a product that can stream more than free Youtube videos. In the near future, the Pult team tells us they will be adding some touches to the interface and will work with content providers to give users access to broader amount of content, some of it free and some of it paid. Users will be able to stream pay-tv channels and rented movies using Pult, in addition to the free web based content.
As a vision of the future of Pult, Raudsalu says “We see that in coming years there will be large number of connected screens everywhere around us. Most of these screens do not have any smartness in them. The processing power will move to the cloud as has already happened to storage. In order to access your content, files or even processing power that resides in the cloud you would need a device that lets you interact with the screen and can identify you. This device is your mobile phone. Pult will be the connecting layer between screen, mobile phone and cloud based services. You would need a identity carrying device.”
In summary, Raudsalu tells us, “Pult will be the last remote you will ever have. Period.”
Pult has a team of five people with backgrounds in media and telecom, and had met by working together with someone from the team in previous projects. Co-founder Andrus Raudsalu was previously the CEO of Delfi– a big internet media company in the Baltics. Veiko Jäger comes from business development and UX/UI design for Estonian Mobile Telephone and OKIA. Tarko Tikan helped build networks for Elion and Starman. Remo Tiigirand has been developing IPTV business in Elion for 9 years, and Priit Pirita has more than 20 year of front-end development expertise.