Goodbye humans, China gets a virtual TV news anchor

10 November, 2018, 14:43 | Author: Emmett Rice
  • Artificial Intelligence AI AI news anchor AI news anchor China AI English news anchor first AI TV anchor Xinhua robot news anchor Xinhua AI news anchor

The digitally synthesized anchor was created by Sogou, a search company based in Beijing, in collaboration with China's state press agency, Xinhua.

Above and below is a video demo of "an artificial intelligence virtual news anchor" formulated by the state-run Chinese news agency Xinhua to interpret the news.

The AI anchor made debut during China's annual World Internet Conference.

"I look forward to bringing you to brand new news experience", the AI said in the video. It uses synthesised voices, created through the use of composite audio recorded from actual anchors, to read the news.

Chinese news agency Xinhua recently added two new staff members that are a little bit different than your regular news anchors. While the voice clearly sounds robotic, and the facial expressions leave a lot to be desired, these will likely become more human-like in future iterations. The AI also took the opportunity to highlight how the revolution of the media industry needs innovation and deep integration of technology.

Similarly, 18-years-ago, an AI-powered news anchor named "Ananova" was developed by a United Kingdom news agency, Press Association.

More news: US Pushing for ‘Calibrated’ Approach on Zero Iran Oil Exports

The World Internet Conference is an annual event meant to promote China as the world's leader in technology and artificial intelligence.

"I will work tirelessly to keep you informed, as the text will be entered into my database without interruption".

Xinhua also demonstrated the A.I. anchor in a short video which showed it reporting the news. "He" as he's known, is the world's first artificial news anchor.

The agency points out that they may be particularly useful for disseminating breaking news reports in a timely manner.

Despite the convenience - and technical advancement - the new addition to Xinhua's news team has faced its share of criticism. "Reading between the lines, that would suggest there's potential for the AI news readers to push their human counterparts out of their jobs", claimed the Inquirer's Roland Moore-Colyer.

Xinhua News unveiled an English-speaking AI news anchor this week. At one part, it says, "Not only can I accompany you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year".

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