China’s iPhone users have found a new craze — a new app called Zao which lets people convincingly and hilariously transpose their faces onto actors like Leonardo DiCaprio, Kit Harrington from “Game of Thrones”, and many others.
Zao topped the Chinese iOS download chart over the weekend after first launching on the App Store on Friday. As of Monday, Zao remains top of China’s App Store, according to App Annie. It isn’t currently available to anyone without a Chinese phone number, and isn’t listed on the UK or US App Store or Play Store.
Created by Chinese developer MoMo, the app allows users to deepfake their faces onto a huge range of actors, singers, and even video game characters. Users can upload even just a single image of their face and the app will automatically map it onto selected video clips for them. The results are surprisingly convincing and unexpected.
So-called “deepfake” technology has caught the public’s imagination, using AI software to analyse someone’s face and then map it onto video of someone else. Recently it has become more sophisticated and, as the Zao app shows, more accessible.
Check out some Zao-generated deepfakes below:
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