We tested Heygen, an app that lets you speak any language

On Tuesday’s “Estelle Midi” on RMC and RMC Story, Anthony Morell tests the Heygen app, which translates videos into all languages ​​and has gone viral.

This is the application that has spread in recent days. You may have seen it on social networks: an artificial intelligence program that allows you to instantly dub a video into any language, with amazing results. It’s called Heygen and it’s absolutely amazing. This application allows you to dub in any language in just minutes. I recorded a short video of myself speaking in French and played it through this program. It’s really my voice translated, it’s my tones. But the most impressive thing, in the video, is that it is also my lips that are moving: the software achieves perfect synchronization, as if I were really speaking English. It is impossible to see counterfeiting with the naked eye.

The tool has gone viral. Especially after a video was published of Lionel Messi in a press conference speaking fluently in English. It’s his voice, his tones, his lips that move… except that Lionel Messi never speaks English and this press conference was held in Spanish. You can try it for free (although the waiting time is quite long). All you have to do is submit a video of at least 30 seconds. You choose a language and a second video is produced, like the first, but dubbed in English, Hindi or Polish. Although the tool has been somewhat of a victim of its own success, videos sometimes take a long time to arrive subtitled.

Beware of distractions

It’s a complete revolution in cinema, where we’re already starting to use this kind of tool. We take the original version of the film or series and immediately get the film in Italian or Korean, and we get the impression that the actors really speak the language. It’s the end of the double screen… There are the pictures of the Hollywood grottoes that see them: the movie screens that rebel against the IA that live in the pain of the mouth. In advertising too. A beauty cream ad filmed in English will be dubbed in all countries… Streaming platform Spotify has just announced that it will clone the voices of American podcasters in all languages ​​using a similar tool. Another application, in the professional world: Tomorrow, I’ll be speaking on the phone or via video, and the AI ​​will double down on all my words in real time. This will not improve the French’s foreign language skills… but it shows that AI will clearly eliminate the language barrier…

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Obviously, there is also a high potential for misuse for malicious purposes, including spreading false information. These sophisticated deepfakes will make it possible to make anyone say anything… Donald Trump speaking French or General de Gaulle’s speech in Portuguese: these are some of the deepfake videos we’ve been seeing circulating for a few days, even if for the benefit of the moment the results are not perfect. The voice/lip sync is amazing but not perfect. And the dubbing could still be improved: Trump, who speaks in French, finds himself speaking with a heavy Quebecois accent. There are fake detection tools out there, but once the video is posted, the damage is already done…

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About the Author: Aldina Antunes

"Praticante de tv incurável. Estudioso da cultura pop. Pioneiro de viagens dedicado. Viciado em álcool. Jogador."

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