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Ex-Yahoo CEO’s start-up rolls out 2 new AI-backed apps

Sunshine secured $20 million in funding in 2020

What’s the story

Sunshine, a start-up co-founded by ex-Yahoo CEO and early Google employee Marissa Mayer, has rolled out two new apps – event organization and photo sharing.

The company, based in Palo Alto and established six years ago, initially offered a subscription software for contact management.

Despite the seemingly simple nature of these new apps, Mayer asserts that Sunshine is tackling issues for users “of all ages,” with a special focus on an older demographic that values familiarity.

AI integration in everyday tasks

Mayer elaborated on how Sunshine’s services, including the newly launched photo and events apps, integrate AI elements to enhance daily tasks.

The photo app is designed to refine existing photo-sharing practices, while the events app promotes the sharing of event-related photos on the platform.

Despite its seemingly retro design, Mayer insists that Sunshine is addressing challenges for a diverse user base.

Design and data privacy policies

Interestingly, Sunshine’s interface is bathed in a purple hue long associated with Yahoo. Mayer described this design choice as “purely coincidental.”

She further explained that users’ photos are hosted on Sunshine’s servers and “available indefinitely,” allowing users to share albums as well as send invites effortlessly across various platforms.

Crucially, she emphasized that Sunshine will not sell its customers’ data to third parties or use it for any other purposes.

Sunshine’s growth trajectory and future plans

Prior to launching its new features, Sunshine debuted a birthday app, which Mayer characterized as “kind of an adjacent area to addresses and contacts.”

This move was inspired by Michael Birch’s successful BirthdayAlarm.com.

Despite initial doubts over privacy issues, Mayer is optimistic that offering free image sharing and event planning will be a game-changer for Sunshine.

The company, which secured $20 million in funding in 2020 and is mostly self-funded, also has plans to introduce video sharing in the future.