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In brief: Deepfakes is another AI-related area that has people worried. The ability to essentially put words in someone else's mouth could have dangerous repercussions, but China's Tencent is offering to create a deepfake of anyone within 24 hours for $145.
Tencent subsidiary Tencent Cloud launched the service last week, writes The Reg. It can create a high-definition deepfake of any individual, as long as the customer has at least three minutes' worth of live-action video of said person and 100 spoken sentences.
For a fee of $145, the company will provide a deepfake of the person, available in half body (waist-up) or entire body, in as little as 24 hours. The service is available in both Chinese and English.
Tencent says that these AI-generated people could be used as hosts for live-streamed infomercials, which are very popular in China, meaning a real person wouldn't need to be paid to host. The company said the creations could also be used as doctors, lawyers, and other professionals.
There are several options available for the deepfaked humans: realistic, semi-realistic, and cartoon styles in 3D, or real person and cartoon styles in 2D. Customers can decide the videos' backgrounds and the tone of the digital human, and Tencent Cloud can add customized Q&As with realistic tones and inflections.
Tencent Cloud Intelligent Human Products general manager Chen Lei said the company aims to create a fully-automated "AI+ Digital Intelligent Human Factory" platform for creating and selling the deepfakes.
China is leading the way when it comes to deepfakes. The state-owned People Daily news outlet has an AI-created presenter named "Ren Xiaorong," who delivers news 24/7 all year round. The country also used virtual hosts during the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Deepfakes have been causing controversy since they were first used to replace the faces of adult film actresses with Hollywood stars. Pornhub and Reddit eventually banned them, but deepfakes have become more convincing over the years. In 2022, the FBI warned that criminals were using deepfakes in remote interviews for tech jobs to steal sensitive data. In February, a fake Joe Rogan video in which he appeared to promote testosterone pills spread on TikTok.