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Rewind Launches iPhone App for Private Web Browsing Activity Recording and AI-Powered Questioning

As of now, Rewind is a personal data recording startup that has launched an iPhone app, backed by investors like Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and First Round Capital. The app allows users to privately record their activity on Safari, and they can later ask questions based on their web browsing history. The app does not record anything by default when the user is browsing in incognito mode.

Previously, Rewind gained attention with its Mac app, which records everything a user does during the day on Apple Silicon Macs in a compressed video format. Users can then ask specific questions about their activities, such as finding who said something during a Zoom meeting. The app processes data locally on the system, ensuring user privacy.

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The iOS app follows a similar path, but it currently records activity only on Safari. Users have the option to go to settings and prevent the app from recording anything on specific pages. If users want to add data from other apps, they need to take screenshots, as Rewind imports screenshots automatically.

To enable searching for specific terms in the data, Rewind uses text recognition. The app also integrates with GPT-4, allowing users to ask more complex questions and reminders about people they know.

Rewind uses a compression algorithm on both Mac and iPhone apps to significantly reduce data storage requirements. The app claims to capture only the changes from frame to frame and has implemented algorithms to reduce power usage on Apple devices.

The startup emphasizes that all user data is private and not sold or used to train AI models. The recordings are stored locally on the device, and the company claims that no one else has access to them. However, this privacy assurance is crucial for the app’s success, especially since it requires users to allow recording of their activity.

In terms of funding, Rewind has raised $10 million at a valuation of $75 million from investors like a16z and First Round Capital. Initially, the Mac app was free, but now it has introduced paid plans for more access after capping free usage to 50 Rewinds. One session of traversing through history or searching, as well as one question asked through GPT-4, count as one “Rewind.” At present, the company intends to keep the iOS app free “for as long as possible.”