Industry sees OpenAI's Sora as a game changer

2024-02-21 10:27:26China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

The emergence of text-to-video artificial intelligence technology has the potential to revolutionize advertising, movie trailers and short video industries, as Sora, a new AI model developed by U.S.-based AI research company OpenAI — creator of chatbot ChatGPT — has recently become a global sensation, experts said.

They added the multimodal large language model, which possesses the ability to generate high-resolution video clips based on given text prompts, is an undeniable future development direction for generative AI, and will inject strong impetus into a new round of industrial development.

Chinese tech firms should pool more resources into accumulating more training data, improving computing capacities and cultivating talent in the field of AI-powered video generation models, said industry observers.

AI-related stocks continued to rally in the A-share market, with Chinese cloud video solution providers Hangzhou Arcvideo Technology Co Ltd and BizConf Telecom Co Ltd seeing their shares surge by the daily limit of 20 percent on the Shanghai bourse's STAR Market on Tuesday.

Sora can generate videos up to a minute long while maintaining visual quality and adherence to user prompts, OpenAI said. It is able to generate complex scenes with multiple characters, specific types of motion, and accurate details of the subject and background. The model understands not only what the user has asked for in the prompt, but also how those things exist in the physical world.

Liu Xingliang, director of the Beijing-based Data Center of China Internet, a research institute specializing in the internet industry, said Sora is undoubtedly a major breakthrough for AI.

"It not only demonstrates AI's advanced ability to understand and create complex visual content, but also brings about unprecedented opportunities and challenges for content creation, entertainment and film and television production industries. The video-generation model will help video content creators to turn their ideas into reality at a faster speed and at a lower cost, and offer audiences richer and more diverse visual experiences," Liu said, adding that AI is expected to play a more important role in all aspects of human lives in the future.

He said with advancements in AI technology, traditional film and TV production processes along with related business models will likely be reshaped, but it does not necessarily mean the demise of legacy industries, and more efforts are needed to explore new artistic forms and expression methods by integrating AI technology.

Chinese AI firms have stepped up the push to expand their presence in the AI video generation sector. Cloudwalk Technology said it has a layout in text-to-image and text-to-video multimodal LLMs and launched a digital human generation platform, while Sumavision said it has invested heavily in video content production, and will continue to explore AI-generated content technology.

Pan Helin, co-director of the Digital Economy and Financial Innovation Research Center at Zhejiang University's International Business School, said as a disruptive technology and milestone in AI progress, Sora will improve the efficiency of video creation, and have an impact on short-video editing and advertising industries.

"Talent, data and computing power are key to video generation models," Pan said, adding the process of developing such models necessitates higher requirements for computing capacity, algorithms and high-quality data, and more efforts are required to bolster the circulation of data elements.

Meanwhile, the use of text-to-video AI models raises concerns about ethics, copyright protection, personal privacy leakage and data security, experts said. How to ensure the authenticity and transparency of the content has become an important issue, and more efforts are needed to formulate rules and regulations to ensure the healthy development of such technology.

Zhou Hongyi, founder of Chinese cybersecurity company 360 Security Group, said: "Sora might bring a huge disruption to the advertising industry, movie trailers and short video industry, but it may not necessarily beat TikTok quickly. It is more likely to become a creative tool for TikTok."

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