World's first AI-based news anchor debuts in China

Updated: Nov 10, 2018, 10:01 IST | Agencies | Beijing

Viewers here were greeted by a digitised version of a Xinhua news anchor named Qiu Hao

The digitised news anchor
The digitised news anchor

Xinhua, China's state news agency, introduced to the world, its first Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based newsreaders who made their debut at the fifth World Internet Conference held in east China's Zhejiang Province.

Viewers here were greeted by a digitised version of a Xinhua news anchor named Qiu Hao. Dressed in a pin-striped suit with a red tie the AI-based news anchor can "accompany you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year." He said, "I can be endlessly copied and present at different scenes to bring you the news."

The AI technology was created by Xinhua and Chinese search engine Sogou and the digital anchors were developed through machine learning and taught to simulate the vocalisations, facial movements, and gestures of human broadcasters. "This presents a life-like image instead of a cold robot," said Xinhua. Xinhua says that these anchors may be particularly useful for disseminating breaking news reports in time.

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