You might have heard, there’s a new viral internet challenge doing the rounds… Again, I know. Every few weeks or so, a new “challenge” pops up and takes the internet by storm for a couple of days. And the most recent one has come in the form of the admittedly hilarious app, FaceApp, which reveals what you’ll look like as an OAP. And people are finding it either very funny or very depressing.
FaceApp is a free mobile application available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play for Android devices. Using artificial intelligence, the app creates realistic transformations of users’ faces using various filters and features. The app has been reviewed almost 200,000 times in the App Store and carries a 4.7 rating. FaceApp first went viral in 2017, but with many updates since then, the technology has become even more realistic, causing it to go viral once again.
The free version offers a limited choice of filters, but don’t worry, the one that ages you are available for free. You also have options to change your face, including changing your mouth to a smile, change the color of your hair, and swap genders. You’re also able to go back in time, even though the younger filters for some reason aren’t as realistic, and aren’t as much fun to use.
Maybe because we already know what we looked like when we were younger, so the app’s success rate with that transformation is lower since users have no idea what they’re going to look like in the future. FaceApp was developed by a small team out of Saint-Petersburg, Russia.“We developed a new technology that uses neural networks to modify a face on any photo while keeping it photorealistic.
For example, it can add a smile, change gender and age, or just make you more attractive,” founder and CEO Yaroslav Goncharov told TechCrunch and Goncharov explains that the fact that FaceApp is so realistic is what sets it apart from any of its competition.“Our main differentiator is photorealism,” he said. “After applying a filter, it is still your photo. Other apps intentionally change a picture in a way it is entertaining, but not a real photo anymore.”
You can either take a photo through the app’s camera functionality or get one from your pre-existing gallery. However, for security reasons, be wary of any app that asks for access into your personal gallery. FaceApp, like most apps, has a privacy page detailing how they use user content. There, the app does admit that they “may share User Content and your information with businesses that are legally part of the same group of companies that FaceApp is.”
We’re not quite sure exactly what this one is supposed to do. But Mashable reported that back in 2017, there was a “hot” feature, that came under fire when users noticed the app lightened people’s skin as a way to make them more desirable. “We are deeply sorry for this unquestionably serious issue,” wrote Goncharov when the app came under fire for being racist.
“It is an unfortunate side-effect of the underlying neural network caused by the training set bias, not intended behavior. To mitigate the issue, we have renamed the effect to exclude any positive connotation associated with it.” It was renamed to “spark” – which may have been renamed again to “Hollywood,” since that feature seemingly makes the user more attractive.
Content Credit: newsweek