Tel Aviv, Israel, and Lehi, Utah, March 3, 2022 — MyHeritage, the leading global service for discovering your past and empowering your future, and Creative Reality™ startup D-ID, announced today the release of LiveStory, a groundbreaking new feature that creates captivating video biographies. LiveStory automatically produces an animated video of a user’s ancestor telling their life story, weaving together photos and details of their life into a narrative that is told by a Speaking Portrait of the person.
LiveStory is powered by some of the most advanced AI technologies available today. The technology for the Speaking Portrait was licensed by MyHeritage from D-ID, a company specializing in video reenactment using deep learning. MyHeritage first integrated D-ID’s award-winning Live Portrait technology in Deep Nostalgia™ to animate the faces in historical photos. Deep Nostalgia™ launched in February 2021 to wide acclaim and became a global sensation. MyHeritage soared to the #1 spot in the app stores in over 30 countries, and since its launch, 100 million animations have been created. With LiveStory, MyHeritage and D-ID take this concept further by adding audio and building a compelling narrative of a person’s life events. The narrative is created automatically from the user’s family tree on MyHeritage, or entered manually, and is converted to high-quality audio using text-to-speech technology. Cutting-edge reenactment technology then animates the person’s face and mouth to speak the audio by generating an accurate lip sync. The animation is automatically enhanced with photos curated from the family tree, or uploaded and paired with the narrative by the user. This results in short and engaging videos that users can send directly to family and friends, or share on social media.
Where Deep Nostalgia™ amazed millions by animating the faces of beloved ancestors, its successor, LiveStory, gives voice to one’s most interesting family stories in a remarkable new way. LiveStory is fully customizable; the narrative, photographs, and voice can all be edited and previewed until the desired result is achieved. LiveStory currently supports 31 languages, dozens of dialects, and hundreds of voice personas, as well as male and female voice options.
MyHeritage has established a policy to prevent abuse of the technology and the creation of “deep fakes”. LiveStory is intended to be used only on photos of deceased people, typically one’s own ancestors, and should never be used on a photo of a living person without their permission. Use of content that is obscene, false, or offensive is expressly prohibited.
Some may find the feature uncanny, however, initial reactions to LiveStory have been outstanding. Noted genealogist James Tanner called the feature “jaw-dropping” and “more than fabulous” after seeing a LiveStory of his grandfather. Writer, author, and renowned lecturer Lisa Alzo was moved to tears by a LiveStory of her late father and said, “I am in awe of this technology. LiveStory gives us a whole new way to experience and share family stories that will resonate with younger and older audiences alike, and is particularly useful for generating video biographies of people who lived before video was invented.”
“LiveStory takes storytelling to the next level,” said Gilad Japhet, Founder and CEO of MyHeritage. “With this latest viral feature, MyHeritage continues to lead the world of online family history in both vision and innovation. Our use of AI to breathe new life into historical photos is unique and is helping millions of people cultivate a renewed emotional connection with their ancestors and deceased loved ones. Genealogy is all about telling and preserving our family stories. We keep showing the world how fun and compelling genealogy can be.”
“Following the dizzying success of Deep Nostalgia™, we are thrilled to team up with MyHeritage once again to create another mind-blowing experience that will change the way people interact with family history,” said Gil Perry, Co-Founder and CEO of D-ID. “LiveStory leverages AI-powered video reenactment to give voice to the stories of our ancestors. We are delighted by such a moving and inspiring application for our technology and for such a strong, ongoing partnership with MyHeritage.”
LiveStory is a freemium feature on MyHeritage, available on desktop, mobile web, and the MyHeritage mobile app. Users can create several LiveStories for free. Beyond that, additional use requires a subscription. LiveStories can easily be shared with friends and family on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, and other social media.
D-ID is a Tel Aviv-based Creative Reality™ startup specializing in patented video reenactment technology using AI and deep learning. D-ID’s products range from animating still photos, to facilitating high-quality video productions, and creating viral user experiences. With funding from tier 1 VCs, D-ID aims to radically disrupt the time, hassle and costs involved in video production, allowing for the creation of highly personalized media using AI, specifically in history, e-learning, corporate training, marcomms, AI assistants, and the Metaverse. With international customers, D-ID’s core competencies in the human face and deep learning enable its partners to create exciting and engaging content that was until now unimaginable. To find out more, visit www.d-id.com.
D-ID Media Contact:
Senior Associate, Si14 Global Communications
MyHeritage is the leading global discovery platform for exploring family history. With billions of historical records and family tree profiles, and with sophisticated matching technologies that work across all its assets, MyHeritage allows users to discover their past and empower their future. MyHeritage DNA is one of the world’s largest consumer DNA databases, with 5.6 million customers. MyHeritage is the most popular DNA test and family history service in Europe. Since 2020, MyHeritage is home to the world’s most advanced AI technologies for animating, repairing, enhancing, and colorizing historical photos. www.myheritage.com
MyHeritage Media Contact:
Director of Public Relations
+1 917 725-5018