Mon. Feb 26th, 2024

The generative AI hype hasn’t died down but.

Living proof, Pika Labs, a startup creating an AI-powered platform to edit and generate movies from captions and nonetheless pictures, right this moment introduced that it raised $55 million in a funding spherical led by Lightspeed Enterprise Companions with participation from Homebrew, Conviction Capital, SV Angel, Ben’s Bites and notable angel buyers together with Quora founder Adam D’Angelo, ex-GitHub CEO Nat Friedman and Giphy co-founder Alex Chung.

The recent tranche comes simply six months after Pika emerged from stealth and coincides with the early entry launch of what Pika’s calling “Pika 1.0,” a brand new suite of videography instruments that introduces a generative AI mannequin able to modifying movies in a spread of types, like “3D animation,” “anime” and “cinematic.”

Picture Credit: Pika Labs

“Video is on the coronary heart of leisure, but the method of constructing high-quality movies thus far remains to be difficult and resource-intensive,” Pika writes in a weblog publish revealed on its web site this morning. “After we began Pika six months in the past, we wished to push the boundaries of know-how and design a future interface of video making that’s easy and accessible to everybody. Since then, we’re proud to have grown the Pika neighborhood to half 1,000,000 customers, who’re producing tens of millions of movies per week.”

Pika was co-founded by Demi Guo and Chenlin Meng, each former Ph.D. college students in Stanford’s Synthetic Intelligence Lab. Previous to learning at Stanford, Guo labored as an engineer at Meta’s AI analysis division, whereas Meng co-authored numerous AI analysis papers together with a number of pertaining to generative AI.

Picture Credit: Pika Labs

Pika competes in opposition to generative AI video instruments and fashions from the likes of Runway and Stability AI. However with Pika 1.0, Pika’s trying to up its sport with a number of differentiating options.

For instance, Pika 1.0 ships with a software that may prolong the size of current movies or remodel them into completely different types, like “stay motion” to “animated” — or increase the canvas or side ratio of a video. One other module edits video content material utilizing AI, like altering somebody’s clothes and even including one other character.

We’ll should put these capabilities to the take a look at as soon as Pika 1.0 turns into broadly out there. However for what it’s price, Lightspeed — which can also be an investor in Stability AI — has confidence within the platform — whilst tech giants like Google and Meta telegraph that they, too, are engaged on generative AI instruments for video. 

Picture Credit: Pika Labs

“Simply as different new AI merchandise have executed for textual content and pictures, professional-quality video creation may also change into democratized by generative AI. We consider Pika will lead that transformation,” Lightspeed’s Michael Mignano mentioned in a press launch. “Given such a formidable technical basis, rooted in an early ardour for creativity, the Pika crew appears destined to vary how all of us share our tales visually. At Lightspeed, we couldn’t be extra excited to assist their mission to permit anybody to convey their artistic imaginative and prescient to life by video, and we’re thrilled to be investing alongside different wonderful buyers on the forefront of AI.”

To this point, Pika Labs has raised round $61 million, inclusive of a $5 spherical led in April led by Friedman.

Pika’s speedy progress is reflective of the continued, robust demand for generative AI of all flavors — from instruments like Midjourney and DALL-E 3 to ChatGPT.

In a current report, IDC projected that generative AI investments will rise from $16 billion this 12 months to a whopping $143 billion in 2027. Whereas generative AI accounts for simply 9% of general AI spending in 2023, the agency expects that’ll enhance to twenty-eight% inside 5 years.

The spending may simply be justified. A current ballot — albeit centered solely on customers from the U.Okay. — discovered that Gen Z is embracing generative AI, with 4 in 5 (79%) youngsters aged 13-17 reporting having used generative AI instruments, apps and companies together with ChatGPT and Snapchat’s My AI.

Then once more, Gen Zers aren’t essentially paying for generative AI. And enterprise clients, which have the largest coffers to spend on it, are encountering hurdles deploying some types of the tech.

O’Reilly’s 2023 generative AI within the enterprise report reveals that many company AI adopters (26%) are nonetheless within the early phases of piloting generative AI, and are deeply frightened concerning the potential challenges current and future surrounding the tech — together with sudden outcomes, safety, security, equity, bias and privateness. The issue of discovering enterprise use circumstances and considerations about authorized points (like who owns the copyright over AI-generated output) are holding generative AI again, the report implies, as are badly-conceived and poorly-implemented AI options.

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