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After spending three years in stealth mode bringing publishers to its push notifications platform, Push.io is emerging from the shadows today and announcing that it will open its push platform to any iOS app developer later this month.

The company focuses on push notifications for content like sports and news, which it claims is different from push darling Urban Airship. (Urban Airship disagrees with this, of course, saying that it simply enables push and that it’s up to the user to determine which content gets pushed out.) Push.io is one of five mobile services startups competing today in our Innovation Competition at the MobileBeat conference in San Francisco.

“We’re interested in finding ways to make the content more relevant to the users,” said Push.io cofounder Joe Pezzillo in an interview with VentureBeat. “While the same kind of functionality we’re developing for targeting could be used for advertising, our focus is more on the people…like finding which of your users is the most active on social media.”

The company touts that it’s pushed over 5 billion notifications, including some for major projects like a Chevy campaign for the Super Bowl. Push.io first hit the scene when the iPhone app store first made its appearance in 2009 — even then, the company was aware that push notifications would be crucial to the app economy.

“We’ve learned a lot from sending billions of notifications, and one thing in particular is that you need to know the results so that you can make your app better and better for your users,” Pezzillo wrote in an email. “We’ve spent a lot of time in the new release making it possible for our customers to get even more audience insights about how people are using your apps.”

Push.io is based in Boulder, Colorado, and is self-financed. The company is currently seeking developers for Android and Windows Phone versions of its platform.

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