Superhuman launches AI-powered instant replies

Email startup Superhuman is launching an AI-powered instant replies feature today with the company looking to double down in AI-fueled functionality this year. The feature gives you three contextual replies as options to quickly respond to an email.

Superhuman has been built around the idea to get you to inbox zero in the fastest way. Instant replies are one more feature to quickly get emails out of your way. You can think of Instant replies as equivalent to Gmail’s smart replies, but Superhuman said its feature is more contextual and personal.

The core concept is the same though. You will get three potential reply options when you hit reply to an email. While the prompts are short, when you click on any of the options, Superhuman writes out a full-sentence reply to you.

As the demo video shows below, when you tap on “Interested” to an email asking you to speak on a panel, the client types out a full sentence with the sender’s name. You can press the tab to switch between replies and press enter to send one. The company said that users who were part of the beta test of instant replies are sending emails twice as fast.

Adding AI to email

Superhuman has already launched a few AI-powered products. Last year, it launched Superhuman AI, which helps users draft better emails with options to change the length or tone.

In January, the company extended the functionality to iPhone and iPad apps as well. In November, the startup launched an auto-summarize feature, which shows a one-line summary on top of your emails.

Some of Superhuman’s competitors have also included AI-powered features in email workflows. Shortwave, a startup founded by ex-Googlers, has launched things like asking AI questions about emails, instant summaries and a way to use AI to reply to emails quickly. Readdle’s Spark email client rolled out an AI assistant last year. Major tech companies like Microsoft and Google have introduced AI-powered features for Outlook and Gmail.

Superhuman co-founder and CEO Rahul Vohra told TechCrunch that the key differentiator for the company in terms of AI-powered features is its stickiness. He noted that an average user uses AI 25 times a week to write emails.

Superhuman’s roadmap

Superhuman says that the first phase of the AI-powered product was having an assistant for the email; the second phase is to have AI work automatically without invoking it with features like auto-summary and instant replies; and the third phase will replace certain parts of a user’s daily workflow like using an AI agent for scheduling or writing full emails on their behalf.

Vohra said that the company could be profitable anytime it wants and it is a strategic decision. The company’s CEO mentioned that it has five years of runway. So a new funding round is not something he is thinking about on a “day-to-day” basis.

Superhuman has kept its price of $30 per month consistent since the launch. But Vohra mentioned that the company might revisit its pricing later this year.

He said that apart from investing in AI products, the company is focusing on making its offering for teams stronger.

“Imagine instead of constantly forwarding or writing an email, internally you can just share a thread. And then on that shared thread, you can put comments and reactions. We are thinking about transforming email from something that’s pure productivity into a platform for smart collaboration. And that’s a big deal because historically, email has been single-player. It was designed in an era where tools were inherently not collaborative,” Vohra said.

The company is also thinking about building special edition email clients starting with Superhuman for sales directed toward account executives and customer managers with integrations like Salesforce and HubSpot.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *