Everything You Need to Know About Synthetic Video in 2024

Written by
Ema Lukan
Published on
June 28, 2024
Table of contents

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Everyone’s been talking about AI lately, and there’s a good reason for that. 

Synthetic media is about to change the world as we know it — just like that, anyone can become a content creator. 

ChatGPT has blown up the internet, new AI tools are emerging every day, and people are starting to realize the true power of AI. 

As we move toward more interactive forms of communication, AI video plays an important role. 📹

It opens up many possibilities for creative expression and has a real business value.

So let’s take a look at what synthetic video is, how you can create one, and discuss some pros and cons. 

And if you think AI video is just that deepfakes thing… 

Let me prove you wrong. 😉

What is synthetic video? 

Synthetic video is any type of video generated with AI.

That is, without cameras, actors, audio equipment, and other physical stuff. To create a synthetic video, all you need is a computer and an idea, and AI then does its magic generating it. 

AI videos can take many forms. Here are some of them:

  • AI videos created from text; AI videos with lifelike AI presenters
  • deepfakes; famously infamous AI-generated videos impersonating people
  • AI videos from still images; still images (in most cases portraits) brought to life by AI
  • AI videos from text: text-to-speech videos with lifelike ai presenters, or any other videos generated from prompts in natural language

The main commonality is that the creation process is fully digital, making it accessible, scalable, and never-seen-before. 🙂

3 examples of synthetic video: AI avatar by Synthesia on TikTok, a deepfake of Tom Cruise on Instagram, and a deepfake of Salvador Dali on YouTuber
Synthetic video is an umbrella term for AI-generated video content, such as talking-head videos generated from text, deepfakes based on face-swap technology, and animated images using reenactment technology.

This makes AI video fundamentally different from what we've been used to before. The ability to generate video on the fly will have many consequences on how we consume and create content, and we’ll get into more detail later. 

First, let’s take a look at how traditional video compares to synthetic video.

Synthetic vs. traditional video production

So what makes synthetic video so great?

What does it mean for Hollywood?

Will people lose their jobs? 

These are super relevant questions, but let’s go step by step.

As said before, synthetic video production is, contrary to traditional production, super accessible.

The average cost of a 1-minute video done the traditional way ranges from $1,500 to $10,000, while an average AI video generator charges $30 for 10 minutes of video content.

This speaks for itself, but there are other benefits of producing videos with AI:

  • They are easy to update
  • They can be made on the fly
  • They can easily be localized & adapted to different audiences
  • They can be made by a single individual
  • They require no video editing skills
  • They enable real-time co-creation by multiple contributors

A graph with images comparing traditional video creation to synthetic video creation
Say goodbye to the hassle of traditional video production. Today, you can create video in mere minutes with an AI video generator.

It blows my mind to think about all the possible applications of synthetic video. 

However, we have seen that it does not replace professional video with artistic value. Rather, it replaces text-based documents, such as PDFs, long articles, and boring PowerPoint presentations.

What we’re observing is that AI video is less about replacing something that already exists, and more about enabling people to do something entirely new. Victor Riparbelli, Synthesia CEO

How to use synthetic video in your content strategy? 

Now that you know you don’t need video editing skills to create AI video content, you’re probably wondering where you can use it in your content strategy. 

These are the most common use cases for AI video:

  • Marketing (case studies, testimonials, how-to videos…)
  • Corporate comms (reports, team updates, video presentations…)
  • Training (sales enablement, onboarding, compliance…)

📹 Need some inspiration?

Check out 60+ examples of AI videos you can easily duplicate and cuztomize to your needs. How-to videos, product videos, training videos and interactive courses — find them here →

How to create video content with AI in 5 steps

One of the best things about AI video creation is that you can make a video with just a few clicks.

Here’s how to generate one using Synthesia in 5 easy steps (the process is similar for any AI video generator, but Synthesia is the most advanced):

1. Choose a template or start from scratch (up to you)

2. Select your AI avatar (there’s more than 100 diverse avatars to choose from)

3. Type in your text (in any of the 120 supported languages)

4. Edit the video (make it visually appealing using different visual assets)

5. Click Generate and wait a few minutes ;) 

And here’s a quick walk-through:

Discover Synthesia in 5 minutes

As you can see, the process of creating a synthetic video couldn’t be easier. 🙂

And if you get stuck with any of the above steps, you can always ask various AI tools for some help.

They come in handy for brainstorming, writing scripts, generating background images and music… 

Check out this article for some concrete examples: 

Pros and cons of synthetic video

As with any other new technology, there are some pros and cons of synthetic video.

And as the technology evolves and becomes mainstream, it’s important to be aware of both.

4 Pros of synthetic video

  1. It is scalable, meaning it can be produced in large quantities without sacrificing quality.
  2. It is accessible, allowing individuals and companies to create high-quality videos without needing expensive equipment or specialized skills.
  3. It enables personalization, meaning you can make multiple versions of personalized synthetic videos. 
  4. It democratizes content creation, allowing a great number of people to produce professional-quality videos.

3 Cons of synthetic video

While synthetic video offers numerous benefits, there are also some significant drawbacks to consider. 

  1. It can be used for impersonation, as deepfake technology becomes more and more accessible.
  2. It can be used to spread misinformation and manipulation, as synthetic media is not tightly regulated.
  3. It can undermine trust in media, as it becomes increasingly difficult to determine what is real and what is not. 

Given these concerns, it is important to approach synthetic video with caution and consider the potential consequences when creating and consuming it.

The future of synthetic video technology

However, synthetic video opens up numerous creative and business opportunities. 📈

In the future, synthetic video technology will evolve faster than ever before. Here's what we can expect, according to the latest AI trends:

  • More expressive talking-head avatars
  • Full-body avatars 
  • New, interactive forms of video content 
  • New distribution channels
My prediction is that in 10-15 years, we'll be able to make Hollywood films on laptops. This will unleash human creativity, challenge the gatekeeper system, and thus democratize video production. Victor Riparbelli, Synthesia CEO

We are witnessing a major shift in content production as it moves from the physical world to computers. 💻

The internet is evolving from a static, text-based platform to a dynamic and interactive one, completely changing the way we communicate and consume media.

Technology is ready. Are you?


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