Skynews created an AI reporter to replace a Human One

Use Cases
Broadcast Media
Learning and Development

Sky News, a distinguished British free-to-air television news channel and media organization, prides itself on providing timely and comprehensive coverage of global events. Delivering its news through a dynamic combination of an English-language radio service and a wide array of online channels, Sky News ensures accessibility and engagement for its diverse audience. It is owned by Sky Group, a division of Comcast.

10K+ Employees
Broadcast Media Production and Distribution
United Kingdom

Key Results:


Time Saved


Cost Efficient


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The Challenge

Tom Clarke, the Science and Technology Editor at Sky News, set out to conduct an experiment and see if he could create an AI avatar that could do the job of a journalist.

  1. Could the AI Journalist be created?
  2. Who could create and program an AI avatar
  3. If it could be created, could the avatar recognize prompts from ChatGPT, prompting itself to be the journalist? Would it understand the difference between facts and fiction, pitch and write a TV report to the same high standard and interact in a way that the audience would believe they were seeing an actual human?

Everyone agrees that AI is going to transform society, including the jobs we do.

The Solution

With the help of Heygen, Sky News producer Hanna Schnitzer was tasked with standing in front of a green screen. She stepped in front of a green screen (a blank backdrop we later added a computer-generated background to) and read TV news scripts from the Sky News archive.

To create the avatar, HeyGen requires four minutes of footage, which was enough to turn Hanna into the face - and voice - of the AI reporter.HeyGen then processed the footage and cloned Hanna's body and voice to ensure it could deliver whatever the reporter's "brain" would come up with.

Here's what Tom values most about HeyGen:

  • Flexibility: With the GPT script writer, videos can be easily updated anytime without starting from the beginning.
  • Technology: "Mind-blowing"
The savings you make in efficiency could be directed towards getting reporters out to interview people more, doing stories that are more imaginative, empathetic or more opinionated - the sort of things the machines don't do so well.

The Results

After creating and testing the AI journalist that was created using HeyGen, the avatar twin was able to deliver the news convincingly to an audience.

  • Cost savings: By leveraging HeyGen, Skynews conducted their experiment promptly and cost-effectively by reducing localization, actors' fees, and voice-over expenses.Time savings: Using HeyGen, they created the AI avatar in four days (the processing time needed.)
  • Technology: Using HeyGen, they created the AI avatar in four days (the processing time needed.)
  • AI Journalist: The HeyGen AI journalist looked and sounded like the producer (using HeyGen's voice clone technology.)

Sky News evaluated its AI reporter and discovered it adeptly generated innovative perspectives on current affairs, selected appropriate experts for interviews, and mainly presented accurate and pertinent evidence to support its stories. The team utilized HeyGen's advanced video editing platform to enhance the AI's capabilities, enabling them to seamlessly craft scripts for the AI avatar, incorporating precisely the content they desired to convey.

A major news organization can create a substitute anchor that is needed for future broadcasts, as needed, and as technology evolves the results will only be better.

Discover more about Sky News. For additional details, please visit the following link:

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