AI research company Runway has released an update for its Gen-2 AI video generator. The update improves the video quality generated when using only images as input without any text prompts.
Runway Research is a New York-based AI development company that currently offers a suite of more than 30 online AI-powered tools. These allow you to generate images or remix the style and composition of an existing image. The company also has tools to remove objects from video, turn any video into slow motion or make still images into video. Back in March, we reported that Runway was about to launch Gen-2, an AI system that can generate new video from text prompts, images or video clips.
What has the company announced?
Via Twitter (X), Runway announced: “We’ve released an update that improves video generation when using only images as input. No text prompt needed. Available now in the browser and iOS”. However, this was very quickly qualified with another tweet which simply said: “Update: iOS incoming shortly.” So, it seems that the new, improved quality AI-generated Image to Video is a browser-only option for the time being.
How good is the update?
The Runway Twitter feed has several video clips shared by the company. There are also a number of videos shared by users of the software. The subjects include photos of Albert Einstein and Audrey Hepburn which have been brought to life. In addition, there are clips showing animals and nature scenes, such as a forest or beach. One video posted by William Lamkin is a tracking shot behind a person walking through a market. Some of the faces in the background are a little strange at times. However, when you consider the video was AI generated from a single still image, it’s stunning.
What we think
The rate of progress with AI and video seems to be almost exponential. It’s only been a few months since our last news story about Runway’s AI-generated video, and there’s another improvement already. The videos shared by Runway following the update have been very impressive. Yes, if you look closely, you can see artifacts or parts that the AI just got wrong. However, some of the videos are very good. It’s also important to remember how new this technology is. With the current rate of development, the future looks very exciting.
Pricing and availability
You can try Runway’s AI tools for free, although there are limitations such as watermarks on your video and output limited to 720p. Paid-for plans begin at $12 per month and go up to $76 per month for unlimited video generation. All paid-for plans are billed annually.