From ‘Video Restoration’ to ‘Face Application,’ how far have you used upscaling?

A movie “A Moment To Remember” photo upscaling Before-After (NAVER movie)

As the number of people enjoying video content increases, it is ‘technology’ that follows on its own as the market grows. As competition for content intensifies, creators often develop strategies to appeal to the public with higher image quality as well as solid story to provide higher-quality content. Therefore, there will be a demand for technology that improves image quality, and new technology will emerge.

Typically, there is ‘upscaling’. Pixels are created to enhance the resolution of images so that they can be useful when you want to watch them on a variety of displays, or when you want to improve the quality of images. Moreover, once the upscaling technology is applied, it can be used more widely. Among the technologies of various applications, ‘Remastering’ and ‘Face enhancement’ will be introduced today.

‘Remastering,’ which adds modern visual beauty to those days and the mood.

Leslie Cheung in a movie “Days Of Being Wild’ (NAVER movie)

Recently in the media industry, there is a growing craze for ‘remastering.’ At the end of last year, the “Remastering Project” was announced at SM Entertainment, saying that the video of a past-affiliated singer’s music videos and performances would be upscaled 4K and released, and the tour of the last concert of Leslie Cheung, a global star from Hong Kong, was restored to 4K video and released. And the public is showing enthusiastic support for the media’s actions, where past images have been restored to good quality and released.

Remastering is a technology that adds color, removes noise, and focuses on sharpening to restore the image clearly. And when it is gone through the upscaling phase, it is reborn as a complete modern image. Although upscaling is not a major technology, thanks to the addition of pixels, quality images can be produced to satisfy consumers.

CYWORLD

In addition, as Cyworld, the SNS of memories, comes back, the contents of the past, including images, are being re-examined. So that each person can be active through SNS, the contents of that time and then are shared and enjoyed with people. When ‘remastering,’ a modern technology, is applied, then its mood is maintained and can be upgraded to video content with modern visual beauty added to it.

‘Face Enhancement’ applied to the video of ‘Face Application’ which was applied only to the photo

‘Face Enhancement’ is literally a technique for improving images focused on facial expressions. In addition to the skin tone, the outline and shadow will be added to make the face more vivid, so it will play a role similar to the ‘Face Apps’ used in the photos. Previously, the function was applied only when Face Apps were turned on and filmed, but with the advent of Face Enhancement, pre-shooting and post-production are now possible. Thanks to this, it is possible to improve the blurriness and low definition that have been the disadvantages of camera apps in mobile.

In fact, upscaling alone can improve basic tone correction and clarity. However, if it is an image that the person wants to improve depending on the type of image, if Face Enhancement is applied, you can receive the result that is improved in the desired direction that standing out the person, and if upscaling is used other tools together, it will improve not only the person but also the overall image quality.

In particular, this is expected to be useful for creators who frequently expose their faces such as V-log and beauty YouTube creators. This is taken with an existing camera, so the naturalness remains the same, and when Face Enhancement is applied after shooting, your face in the screen improves. In addition, the overall picture quality becomes clearer, which can lead to the same effect as the purchase of expensive, high-performance camera equipment.

‘kokoon.cloud,’ a variety of video upscaling services that capture the taste of creators

Upscaling Video Online “kokoon.cloud”

“kokoon.cloud” is an online site where AI upscaling enhance the video image’s quality. In April, the mentioned in this post ‘Remastering’ and ‘Face Enhancement’ functions will be added as well. The upscaling technology currently being offered is also divided into “DeepField-SR1,” which focuses on improving natural image quality and “DeepField-SR2,” which focuses on the removal of noise and emphasis on texture, which can be adapted to the concept of the image.

Visit kokoon.cloud↓

Moreover, it is also the charm of kokoon.cloud that your own upscaling style is created as another function is used. For example, the upscaling technology “DeepField-SR2” can be applied after the aforementioned “Face Enhancement” technology is first applied, or after the “Remastering” technology is applied, video content that revives the character of memories can be created.

Because each technology of kokoon.cloud is excellent, it is possible to receive a satisfactory result even if it is used alone, and the technology can be properly mixed and used according to the direction of the desired improvement. What would it be like when kokoon.cloud’s upscaling service is applied when your own unique content is created in a lot of content?

Golden Age of virtual human, is it a momentary curiosity or will it be an co-existence?

Rosy, a virtual human (Source: Rosy Instagram)

‘Rosy’, a virtual human changed the flow of the industry by giving tremendous ripple effect to advertisement industry. A ‘virtual human’ created by ‘real people’ not only overtakes advertisement industry such as finance, cosmetics and fashion but also shows performance like top stars ahead of debut as a singer. In addition, various virtual humans appeared in row after the appearance of Rosy and we are getting familiar with living together.

When a virtual human appeared at first, there were public opinions that the current virtual human will also be ended with a short curiosity while referring to ‘Adam’, a cyber-singer who failed in the past. However, if you look at what the current virtual human does, she is attracting more attention as she is active in various fields including advertisement industry, entertainment, and influencers. Then, does it mean that virtual humans become an existence who will continue to be with us in the future?

Virtual human, who is ‘celebrity’ contract with entertainment companies.

Yuah, a virtual human (Source: Smile Gate)

Recently, we often hear a news of signing contract between big entertainment company and virtual human. YG Entertainment announced that it has signed an exclusive contract with ‘Han Yuah’, a virtual human of Smile Gate, and ‘Rina’, a virtual human of Netmarble company, had signed an exclusive contract with Sublime, an entertainment company which actor ‘Song Gangho’ and ‘Rain’ belong. Besides, various entertainment companies are announcing their plans for virtual human such as developing their own virtual humans.

As such, virtual humans are extending their field of activity to entertainment business starting as influencers and showing various performances such as singing, dancing, and acting. Since they were characterized by appearance most people prefer, they quickly inform their existence through SNS to get popularity from the public and were able to begin their activities in entertainment industry.

When did virtual humans become popular?

Adam, a cyber singer (Source: Adam Soft)

The beginning of a virtual human in Korea is ‘Adam’, a cyber singer. He made his debut in 1998 and was popular for a while. But his popularity wasn’t continued due to the limitation of 3D graphics at that time, and Adam remained as a failed case. The current virtual humans have overcome the precedent of failure and appeared again has emerged in different situation as before, so many people think it will succeed rather than fail.

The popularity of virtual humans underlies the popularity of Metaverse. Metaverse which combines ‘meta’ meaning virtual and ‘verse’ meaning universe can project our own view of the world into the virtual reality, so it is evaluated as the most promising business. Thanks to contactless culture has become popular due to the pandemic, the public get familiar with virtual world and media also reduced the sense of rejection against virtual humans. In addition, virtual humans are showing activities in various media such as YouTube, Instagram, etc. this made the public accept them naturally.

Evolving AI Human market, possibility of its development is almost limitless!

Another reason the virtual human could grow is graphics. As VR has expanded, the level of graphic has significantly improved than before, so we could realize virtual humans with natural figures just like a real person by adding AI to portraits or videos. As a result, very natural visual that is beyond so called ‘uncanny valley (When human see non-human beings, they feel rather uncomfortable if the level of resemblance is too high)’ was able to create.

Concert of Leslie Cheung that is restored by AI technology (Source: Hong Kong South China Morning Post)

Recently, virtual human based on AI technology can revive the figure in the past. As YouTube became very popular, videos in the past are also actively uploaded. Among them, videos of memory who had already passed away sometimes appeared. However, there were taken too long ago, the quality was not good. However, it was announced that concert tour video of Leslie Cheung in 2000s has restored with 4K quality video.

The concert tour video of Leslie Cheung which is restored by one IT company in China record recording over 10 million views in short time. It said that the background of being able to restore the video was AI. Since AI generated pixel, the figure of Leslie Cheung who was under dark concert hall could be a clear video because AI restored more detailed in the video.

‘kokoon cloud’, a website of improving video quality, is providing a service to improve the quality of videos by using self-developed AI. It allows to enhance video quality by two options such as ‘DeepField-SR1’ that generates the pixel by focusing on subject in the videos and ‘DeepField-SR2’ that erases noise and emphasizes texture. In addition, kokoon.cloud preparing services of ‘Face-Enhancement’ that is optimized for correcting figure videos and ‘Remastering’ that can restore old videos. Therefore, it is expected to be very helpful tools to create figure-related video contents.

‘Virtual Business’ including virtual humans are deeply related with AI. It creates virtual human by graphics and AI, or it gives an opportunity to meet celebrities in our memories who already passed away. In addition, it is not an exaggeration to say that AI involves in all parts of virtual world such as creating characters by compounding AI and graphics, so I am expected to be emerged another virtual world and the role of AI.

Upscaling, the best solution for retouching videos.

Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube… SNS have become deeply inside our life. It is because People can record their daily life easily compared to before when we should carry camera to record our memories and stories. As there are various people using SNS, various contents are being upload. However, there is one thing in common that they go through the “retouching” stage.

After taking pictures, retouching stage has become a necessity, not an option. Therefore, various camera applications for retouching photo are being developed and increased popularity steadily. There are a lot of camera applications, but video retouching applications are relatively rare. So I propose that Instead of applications, you can use ‘upscaling’ as a solution that easily retouching videos.

SNS is addicted to video, so I record everything in videos!

SNS tends to prefer videos. For example, when we use Instagram, most of the first appearance popular post when we searching contents is video and they launched ‘reeels’, a platform dedicated to video contents. In particular, ‘Reels’ has become a popular video platform in a short time because they have many similar aspects to video SNS ‘TikTok’. Besides, as YouTube grow rapidly and the number of creators who show their daily life through V-log has increased, more and more people upload video to SNS as a means of recording their memories.

However, V-log without retouching is likely to be ignored in huge SNS’s contents world, because most creators improve the quality by retouching color and skin tone of the video. Therefore, videos without retouching, the ‘raw’ videos seem to relatively low-quality contents. In order to solve this problem, many creators tend to use camera applications that have been retouched from the beginning, and sometimes purchased high-performance cameras.

Both camera application and high-performance camera can enhance video’s quality, but they have disadvantages clearly. First, camera application can retouch skin-tone and highlight beauty of face, but not guaranteed the video’s quality. In addition, there is a risk that decrease quality of the video, shot by camera application, when you watch on a bigger display such as tablet PC or desktop. High-performance camera can make clear video quality on any display, but it is very expensive.

Natural retouching and ease, the best retouching video solution ‘upscaling’.

Upscaling is the best video retouching solution which is able to retouch video naturally while compensate the defects. Upscaling is a technology that enhance video quality, and it can be used freely depending on various purpose of use. For example, even if the resolution of the video is low, upscaling helps to watch clearly on a large display such as TV or if you want retouching whole video’s color to brighter, upscaling could be very useful.

Recently, upscaling based on AI is getting attention. Previously, small video should be blur because of pixels are simply copied and pasted average value of the nearest, but if you use AI to upscale video, deep-learning model expects and generates pixels so it could be retouched naturally and clearly. For example, I upscale my face video to 4K then my skin-tone will be brighter and clearer and accentuate the contour of face, so it makes my strengths stand out.

Another reason why upscaling is the best video retouching solution is ease. Especially, it can use not only software but also online, kokoon.cloud is video upscaling online service to upscale your video up to 4K. When you upload a video, it converts the video to desired size, AI generates pixels to natural upscaling. In addition, the conversion time is very fast to upscale video with the best quality, and you can use everywhere web-capable place.

Upscaling is an optimal video retouching solution that is very efficient in terms of time and price for natural retouching. In strong competition of various video contents, many creators try to make better contents to attract audiences. Wouldn’t it be possible to become winner in this competition if you enhance the quality of videos easily and quickly through upscaling? Try upscaling, easy video retouching solution everyone can use.

Online video upscaling ‘kokoon.cloud’ renovated open.

kokoon.cloud

On 24th Mar, online video upscaling based on cloud service, ‘kokoon.cloud’ renovated open. Kokoon.cloud is getting famous at home and abroad because they serve fast and easy online video upscaling, and it can upscale up to 4K and great quality. We decide to renovate website for better service to more users.

Through this renovation, we focused on maintaining ease of use as before and adding new tools so that users upscale with higher quality. First, separate workspace and add preview tool, especially we introduce new upscaling version that added new AI models. Users can get upscaling results tailored to their favor.

1. Make workspace for focusing on upscaling

kokoon.cloud workspace

Kokoon.cloud separate main page and workspace to users can upscale their video more easily. In addition, users can set details like resolution, video format, quality, etc. to taste, it calls ‘option’. You can make various options on a video to different results.

Even though workspace is separated and provides more sophisticated upscaling through setting options, kokoon.cloud maintains the ease of use. Upload your video on workspace and set option on your way, then click ‘PROGRESS CONVERTING’ button to upscale. If you click the original video, only display the video’s result, so users can see which one is the upscaling video without being confused.

2. ‘Preview’, you can compare B/A before download.

kokoon.cloud preview

‘Preview’ is new tool in workspace to see upscaled result before download. Click the preview in option window and compare the original video and upscaled result based on the options you set. You can drag the middle bar to move freely to check whether the areas that need to be emphasized or there are any problems.

If you want to compare before and after more precisely, then adjust screen magnification from 100% to 400%, or scale to fit. Especially, kokoon.cloud have two versions of upscaling that apply different AI models, so user can get a better upscaling result by comparing which version goes best with the video.

3. Two versions of upscaling to satisfy user’s style.

Kokoon.cloud added new features for new website, the most notable part is ‘Deepfield-SR2’, another version of upscaling. Kokoon.cloud’s upscaling is based on BLUEDOT’s ‘Deepfield-SR’, recently BLUEDOT developed new AI model to meet user’s needs. It applied to ‘Deepfield-SR2’, and both can use in kokoon.cloud.

‘Deepfield-SR1’is same as before, AI generates pixels focusing on objects, so it enhances video naturally and quickly. The other version of upscaling, ‘Deepfield-SR2’, is focused on erase noise. it deletes only noise and emphasize textures, so it upscale more moderate than ‘Deepfield-SR1’. Two versions of upscaling have different characters, you can choose on your style.

4. The first impression of kokoon.cloud, main page.

kokoon.cloud how to use?

The main page of kokoon.cloud introduce what kind of work we do to guests. ‘How to use?’ is a tutorial video showing how to use workspace, and users send any opinions like improvements or concerns using ‘Talk to Sales’. Above this, it introduces kokoon.cloud’s communities like YouTube, Facebook, and Blog.

kokoon.cloud is planning to make various attempts from this renovation. We provide other useful video solutions except online video upscaling and better services by communicating with kokoon.cloud users through newsletters and SNS communities. All of this is thanks to steady increase kokoon.cloud’s users and the continued positive evaluations of our upscaling quality.

Why YouTube supports 4K videos?

More than 50 billion worldwide creators upload about 24,000 hours of contents in an hour, and more than 2 trillion users watch these huge number of contents. The value is recorded by YouTube, the word’s largest video platform.

Sometimes YouTube to be a standard for video contents. What is the trendiest contents? Who is the rising creator today? When I curious those information, I always search in YouTube. As such, YouTube is leading video contents market with steady changing and innovating. And supporting 4K videos is one of the various and innovative changes in YouTube. 4K has more pixels than HD about 4 times, so it express video definition in high quality. Then I curious a question, why the video trend leader YouTube supports 4K videos?

4K, the symbol of high-definition videos.

4K means there are about 4,000 pixels in the video horizontal. It also used to refering Ultra-high definition resolution and called 4K UHD(Ultra HD). 4K video’s size is 3840×2160, which is 3 times bigger than HD, and the quality is outstanding because it has more pixels than Full HD 4 times. When 4K appeared, 4096×2160 and 3840×2160 were used together but CEA(Consumer Electronics Association) set the size 3840×2160 in 2012, which is the current standard.

In 2012, South Korea transmitted 4K video for test broadcasting and start the era of 4K from while live broadcast 4K UHD some matches in Brazil world-cup 2014. Since then, 4K display market has grown rapidly because 4K contents has increased, now we watch 4K videos in daily life like desktop, laptop etc.

YouTube attempted to build a platform to watch 4K videos in 2015 for preparation the popularization of 4K videos. First, they test platform operation by playing 6 4K videos, and then provide 4K resolution function. YouTube provides SD, HD, 4K resolutions, and the highest resolution user can watch is 4K. In conclusion, supporting 4K on YouTube, the largest video contents platform, means that 4K has become the standard of high-quality video in the world.

Satisfied the public addicted to watching!

Not only YouTube, OTT platforms such as Netflix also play 4K contents because the vido trend have been changed. From 4K display is commercialized quickly, people watch videos on various displays like desktop, TV and they want to keep high quality on any displays.

Recently, Google Chromecast is very popular in South Korea. Even before release, many people order it online from overseas. In addition, the new version of TVs support video platforms such as YouTube and Netflix, Google Chromecast is gaining popularity more and more.

This means that people who watch videos on mobile to TV display have increased. Video content area has become huge thanks to people watch videos increased rapidly and videos become diverse for people who want to enjoy spare time. Therefore, people are inconvenienced when they watch video content on a small mobile screen for a long time, so they prefer to bigger display to watch video more comfortably.

Is the successful 4K video at stake?

However, I am worried about the future of 4K video because the number of contents provided in 4K is insufficient to satisfied public who are looking forward to high-quality video content. Besides, some defects that it is expensive to produce 4K contents and if the popular content you previously owned is not 4K, we cannot meet the demand to watch it in high quality.

Upscaling is the most effective solution to solve the problem. Upscaling can convert the video finished shot to 4K, it means that you can enhance HD video 3 times to 4K thanks to upscaling. It is much cheaper than shot 4K video through high-performance camera and even convert the video you already have. Video creators can use upscaling very usefully to make high quality contents. Kokoon.cloud is fast and easy video upscaling online service, anyone can upscale video through website for free.

Visit to kokoon.cloud ↓

Video resolution will be important factor to evaluate and YouTube which is leading the trend of video contents are realized it, so they play 4K video to public. I think the decision have affected users in YouTube to increase.

How to keep high quality of video on any displays?

With the spread of smart home appliances linked to mobile to the public, more people enjoy video contents such as YouTube and Netflix on larger displays. It is more comfortable and realistic when you play the video on a larger screen than mobile.

However, if you watch mobile-size video on a big screen more than 50 inches arise a big problem. The quality of video gets blurry when you increase the video size. This is a natural result, but people can’t stand this inconvenience. We need to solve this problem and ‘upscaling’, keeping high quality of video on any displays, is the most efficient solution among any technologies.

Upscaling is a technology that global companies such as NVIDIA, AMD, and Microsoft are paying attention to.

upscaled by kokoon.cloud

Upscaling is a technology that enhances a video to keep quality in detail while increasing video resolution. Today the scope of upscaling is gradually expanding, because the resolution of displays is increasing but the video contents cannot keep up with the pace of screen size. 4K display has already been supplied and now we even watch 8K displays. However, the number of 4K videos are not enough to play and while old videos before HD resolution are popular again, the application of upscaling technology is gradually expanding.

Source: NVIDIA

In game industry, upscaling is already being used to improve gaming user experience on PC. NVIDA, global IT company, developed DLSS and get ahead of game upscaling part, and AMD also participate into the upscaling technology field by FSR. Recently, even Microsoft has announced that they are researching upscaling software using AI. As a result, “Upscaling” become the most noticeable keyword in the industry.

Sound like a dream 8K display, but no contents?

Source: Samsung

There being more reason why upscaling is on the rise, that is a correlation between the development of display technology and the number of video contents. The sales of 8K TV had been steadily increasing since they appeared, but it is slowing down lately. Because people are looking forward to watching on 8K TV very high resolution video which is four times higher than 4K TV, but there are few contents to satisfy 8K TV’s resolution. None of broadcasting stations provide 8K video yet, and OTT platforms such as YouTube, Netflix, and Apple TV also service up to 4K videos.

In current contents creating environment, it is difficult to produce UHD videos such as 4K or 8K. First, cameras equipment which is capable of shooting 4K video is expensive. Although UHD camera is emerging, but video quality is often not good depending on the shooting environment. In addition, it takes long time to produce, so it is very inefficient in terms of cost and time. For these reasons, it is being researched to produce 4K contents by converting to 4K using upscaling to enhance video resolution after producing content at 2K resolution.

Is upscaling professional? NO! everyone can use it.

Even though the scope of using upscaling is expanding and it is a rising technology, but it is still unfamiliar term to public. Is upscaling a specialized technique that can only be used by specialists? No! Upscaling is a very simple technique that anyone can use.

Today, there are more than 2 billion worldwide people using YouTube, and the number of creators is about 50 million, So, in this era where anyone can create and enjoy video content, and the number of users is increasing, video quality improvement technology that enhances the contents is necessary for everyone. For this reason, upscaling technology providers are providing services through software and online so that anyone can experience upscaling easily and simply.

Kokoon.cloud is easy and fast online video upscaling through cloud and we serve online upscaling for free. Just upload your video and start converting, you can make high resolution video without losing quality. We serve our upscaling technology for free so that anyone can experience.

VISIT KOKOON.CLOUD↓

As the video contents market grows, resolution has become a factor in determining the overall quality of content. In addition, the number of contents is increasing, and as display technology is advanced, public users consume contents on more than one equipment. Therefore, upscaling that can achieve high resolution on any display is no longer an option but a necessity.

AI technology, How far will it develop?

Today, we ask machines questions that may be asked to people such as ‘Tell me the title and singer of the song playing right now’, ‘What’s the most popular movie in cinema these days?’, ‘How is the weather today?’. However, Now is the era where no one finds it weird, this is thanks to ‘AI (Artificial Intelligence)’ that permeated our lives as a whole.

This technology called ‘Artificial Intelligence’ or ‘AI’ is a computer technology that artificially implements human learning ability, inferencing ability, and perception ability. Because AI can apply what humans have to do to machines, it has many advantages, such as a wide range of applications, reducing labor costs, and replacing some of people’s roles in the current situation where the population is increasingly scarce.

The life with ‘AI’ that now we are accustomed

Google

The opportunity to imprint unfamiliar Artificial Intelligence on the public was the Go match between AlphaGo and Lee Se-dol held in 2016. As the match between AlphaGo, an Artificial Intelligence Go program developed by Google’s DeepMind, and Lee Se-dol, a human who boasts the highest Go skills, drew public attention, the public could see what role the Artificial Intelligence plays. Since then, various services with Artificial Intelligence have been created, and the life with AI has begun.

Representatively, there is an Artificial Intelligence speaker. The artificial intelligence built into the speaker acts as a secretary, enabling conversation like humans, and providing information. It was a rather unfamiliar product, but it boasts quite a lot of popularity and has become a common item in our daily life. AI is preferred by office workers who live alone because of its various function such as listening music, weather prediction and alarm, and it plays many roles such as being a conversation partner for the elder who lives alone in a situation where face-to-face contact has become difficult due to COVID-19.

Autonomous driving is also a representative industry in the field of applying Artificial Intelligence. Autonomous driving reduces the energy consumption of drivers by helping cars recognize traffic conditions itself and drive safely, which shows how much AI contributes to human life and proves the high value of technology. Actually, Hyundai Motor Company is making generous investments and showing continued interest by selecting AI technologies such as autonomous driving and Urban Air Transportation (UAM) as key technologies that will be responsible for the future.

The more upgraded world of Graphics due to AI

Also, another field that has drew attention due to the application of AI is ‘Graphic’. Using Artificial Intelligence technology, viewers are amazed by real graphics because it can realize more realistic graphics by reducing the difference between the screen and reality. Additionally, A new area has been also created as the level of graphics have been upgraded surpassingly due to application of AI.

Virtual Influencer ‘ROZY’ (Shinhan Bank)

‘Virtual influencer’, which was created as a virtual human being by applying AI technology to the face of a real person, is now the best model. Virtual influencer does not cost labor, can be controlled, and has no time and space limit, so it can be used in many places at the same time. As a result, it is very efficient in terms of time and cost, so various brands are showing interest in marketing content in collaboration with Virtual influencer. The popularity of Virtual influencer, which appears in advertisements of almost all brands, can be attributed to the fact that Deepfake technology using AI has reduced the difference between reality and virtuality.

Upscaling, a technology that improves video quality, also brought about further upgraded results thanks to AI. The existing upscaling technology, which enlarges the video by copying the average value of pixels, often can increase the resolution of the video, but the quality becomes blurred. However, When Artificial Intelligence technology is applied, the trained AI inferences and generates pixels that best match the video at high resolution, so the video not only enlarges but also maintains clear image and high quality.

KOKOON Cloud’s upscaling technology also applied AI. Its proprietary Artificial Intelligence trained from numerous video data generates the most suitable pixel, enabling the best quality improvement that is natural overall and does not lose details even if looking closely. Even if you enlarge the 640x360p SD video to 3840x2160p 4K, you can see videos with improved quality without breaking off.

On the other hand, there are voices of concern about now that AI technology is deeply entering our life. It hasn’t been long since AI was involved in our life, and various trials and errors may occur because we are currently in the stage of establishing a direction to life with AI. But the clear thing is that thanks to Artificial Intelligence, the quality of our life will be better and we live a more wealthy and convenient life.

AI 기술의 발전, 어디까지 갈 수 있을까?

‘지금 들리는 노래의 제목과 가수를 알려줘’, ‘요즘 영화관에서 가장 인기있는 영화는 뭐야?’, ‘오늘 날씨 어때?’ 등 사람과의 대화에서 이루어질 법한 질문을 기계에 합니다. 하지만 그 누구도 이상하게 여기지 않는 시대가 되었는데요, 현재 우리 생활을 전반적으로 지배하고 있는 ‘AI(Artificial Intelligence)’ 덕분입니다.

‘인공지능’ 또는 ‘AI’로 불리고 있는 이 기술은 인간의 학습능력과 추론능력, 지각능력을 인공적으로 구현하고자 하는 컴퓨터 기술입니다. AI는 인간이 해야 하는 일을 기계에 적용시킬 수 있기 때문에 활용 영역이 광범위하고 인건비를 줄일 수 있으며, 인구가 부족해지고 있는 현 상황에서 사람의 역할을 일부 대신할 수 있다는 점 등 많은 장점을 가지고 있습니다.

이제는 익숙해진 ‘AI’와 더불어 사는 삶

출처: 구글

생소했던 인공지능을 대중들에게 각인시킬 수 있었던 계기는 2016년 개최된 ‘알파고vs이세돌’의 바둑 대결이었습니다. 구글의 딥마인드에서 개발한 인공지능 바둑 프로그램인 ‘알파고’와 가장 높은 바둑 실력을 자랑하는 인간 ‘이세돌’의 대결이 세간의 주목을 받으면서 대중들은 인공지능이 어떤 역할을 하는지에 대해 알 수 있었죠. 이후로 인공지능을 적용한 다양한 서비스가 탄생하며 AI와 더불어 사는 생활이 시작되었습니다.

대표적으로 ‘인공지능 스피커’가 있습니다. 스피커에 내장되어 있는 인공지능이 비서의 역할을 하면서 인간처럼 대화도 가능하고, 정보를 제공해주기도 합니다. 다소 생소했던 제품이지만 제법 많은 인기를 자랑하며 일상에서 흔하게 볼 수 있는 아이템이 되었는데요. 음악 감상부터 날씨를 알려주기도 하고, 알람 기능까지 갖추고 있어 혼자 자취하는 직장인들에게 선호되고 있으며 코로나19로 대면 접촉이 어려워진 상황에서 집에 홀로 남겨진 어르신들의 대화 상대가 되어 주기도 하는 등 많은 역할을 해주고 있습니다.

자율주행 역시 인공지능을 적용한 분야의 대표주자입니다. 자율주행은 자동차가 스스로 교통상황을 인지하고 안전하게 주행하도록 이끌어줘 운전자의 에너지 소모를 줄여주는데요, 이는 인간의 삶에 AI가 얼만큼 기여하는지를 보여주며 기술이 보유하고 있는 높은 가치를 증명해주기도 합니다. 실제로 현대자동차는 자율주행과 도심항공교통(UAM) 등 AI기술을 미래를 책임질 핵심 기술로 선정하면서 아낌없는 투자와 지속적인 관심을 보이고 있죠.

AI 덕분에 한층 업그레이드된 그래픽의 세계

그리고 AI의 적용으로 주목받게 된 또 하나의 분야는 ‘그래픽’입니다. 인공지능 기술을 활용하면 화면과 실제의 차이를 줄여 더욱 실감나는 그래픽을 구현할 수 있기 때문에 보는 사람들은 실제와 같은 그래픽에 감탄을 하게 되죠. 게다가 AI 덕분에 뛰어난 그래픽 수준을 갖게 되면서 새로운 영역이 탄생하기도 했습니다.

버추얼 인플루언서 ‘로지’ (출처: 신한은행)

실제 사람의 얼굴에 AI 기술을 적용해 가상의 인간으로 탄생시킨 ‘버추얼 인플루언서’는 지금 가장 잘나가는 광고 모델입니다. 버추얼 인플루언서는 인건비가 들지 않고, 통제가 가능하며 시공간의 한계가 없어 동시에 여러 곳에서 사용할 수 있습니다. 때문에 시간과 비용 면에서 매우 효율적이어서 다양한 브랜드는 버추얼 인플루언서와 협업한 마케팅 콘텐츠에 관심을 보이고 있는데요. 거의 모든 브랜드의 광고에 등장하고 있는 버추얼 인플루언서의 인기는 AI를 활용한 딥페이크 기술이 현실과 가상의 차이를 줄여준 덕분이라고 할 수 있습니다.

영상의 화질을 향상시켜주는 기술인 업스케일링도 AI로 인해 더욱 업그레이드된 결과를 가져올 수 있게 되었습니다. 화소의 평균값을 복사해 영상을 확대한 기존의 업스케일링 방식은 영상의 크기는 커지지만 대신 화질은 흐릿해지곤 하는데, 여기에 인공지능 기술을 적용하게 되면 학습된 AI가 스스로 영상에 가장 어울리는 화소를 찾아 생성해주기 때문에 영상의 크기가 확대될 뿐 아니라 화질까지 또렷하게 유지해줍니다.

코쿤클라우드의 업스케일링 기술 역시 AI를 적용했습니다. 수많은 비디오 데이터를 통해 학습한 자체 개발 인공지능이 가장 어울리는 화소를 생성해줘 전체적으로는 자연스러우면서 자세히 살펴봐도 디테일을 잃지 않는 최상의 화질 향상이 가능합니다. 640x360p의 SD급 영상을 3840x2160p의 4K급으로 영상을 확대하게 되더라도 깨짐 현상 없이 자연스럽고 또렷하게 화질이 개선된 영상을 만나볼 수 있습니다.

코쿤클라우드 바로가기↓

한편에서는 AI기술이 삶에 깊숙이 들어오는 지금을 걱정하는 목소리가 들리기도 합니다. 하지만 아직 우리의 생활에 AI가 관여하게 된 시간이 얼마 되지 않았고, 현재는 AI와 함께 살아가는 방향을 정립해가는 단계이기 때문에 다양한 시행착오가 발생하게 될 수도 있습니다. 하지만 분명한 사실은 인공지능 덕분에 삶의 질은 향상될 것이며 우리는 더욱 윤택하고 편안한 생활을 살아갈 수 있을 것입니다.

‘애플vs삼성’, 고공행진 하는 태블릿 PC 시장의 승자는?

뉴노멀 시대를 맞이해 새로운 생활 패턴들이 발생하고 있는 가운데 ‘원격’은 우리 삶에 가장 가까이 다가온 단어입니다. 재택 근무, 원격 수업 그리고 화상 면접 등 대면으로 이루어졌던 일들을 비대면으로 전환하면서 새로운 라이프스타일이 형성되었죠. 그리고 사람들은 이러한 변화에 적응하기 위해 환경을 조성하고 있습니다.

집에 있는 시간이 증가하면서 인테리어를 새로 하기도 하고, 컴퓨터의 성능을 업그레이드 하고자 그래픽카드를 구매하는 사람들이 늘어나기도 했죠. 이처럼 다양한 변화 중 눈에 띄는 부분은 태블릿PC의 수요가 급격히 증가했다는 점입니다. 그리고 태블릿PC 시장의 투톱을 달리고 있는 애플과 삼성전자는 보급형부터 고급형까지 다양한 모델을 공개하며 태블릿PC 경쟁을 본격화하고 있습니다.

비대면 시대가 가져온 새로운 라이프스타일, 그리고 태블릿PC

이전에는 태블릿PC가 스마트폰에 밀려 기대한 것 이하의 성과를 거두고 있었지만, 코로나19로 비대면 시대가 개막하면서 판매량이 급증했습니다. 작년 애플, 삼성의 태블릿PC 출하량은 약 1억 6000만 대로 추정되고 있으며, 코로나가 자리잡기 이전인 2019년 대비 약 10%가량 증가한 수치라고 합니다. 특히 코로나19가 전 세계적으로 유행한 2020년에는 작년보다 약 2.1%가량 더 많이 출하했다고 하니, 코로나19는 태블릿PC의 판매량에 분명한 영향을 미치고 있다고 볼 수 있습니다.

재택근무, 원격수업 등 전반적인 라이프스타일이 비대면으로 전환되고 있으며 여기에 넷플릭스, 왓챠를 비롯한 OTT서비스와 유튜브 등 동영상 콘텐츠의 인기가 치솟으면서 커다란 디스플레이를 자랑하는 태블릿PC의 수요가 늘어나게 된 것입니다. 휴대성을 가지고 있기 때문에 이동하면서 수업을 들을 수 있으며 스마트폰보다 더 다양한 기능을 가지고 있어 활용도가 높고 게다가 화면이 크기 때문에 책을 읽거나, 동영상을 감상하기에도 더 편리하다는 장점이 있기 때문에 이제는 생활 필수품으로 자리잡게 되었죠.

애플의 독주, 그리고 그 뒤를 바짝 쫓는 삼성의 전략은?

갤럭시탭 s8 (출처: 삼성전자)

애플은 2010년 아이패드를 공개했고, 그 이후로 전체 태블릿PC 수요의 3분의 1을 점유하면서 전세계 태블릿PC 시장의 강자로 올라서게 되었습니다. 그리고 그 뒤는 삼성전자의 갤럭시탭이 자리하고 있는데요, 갤럭시탭은 아이패드의 독주를 막기 위해 새로운 제품을 출시하며 막강한 경쟁 구도를 갖추려 합니다.

그렇다면 이미 전세계 태블릿PC 시장을 선점한 아이패드를 이기기 위해 갤럭시탭이 내세운 전략은 무엇일까요? 최근 삼성전자는 갤럭시탭S8 시리즈를 출시했는데요, 이들이 가장 초점을 맞춘 부분은 ‘디스플레이’ 라고 합니다. 삼성전자는 태블릿PC 구매자들의 약 90%가 더 큰 화면을 원하고 있다고 밝히며 아이패드보다 화면이 더 크다는 점을 강조하고 있습니다.

서피스 프로8 (출처: 마이크로소프트)

여기에 마이크로소프트도 태블릿PC를 내놓으면서 태블릿PC 시장 경쟁에 가세했습니다. 마이크로소프트의 태블릿PC ‘서피스 프로8’은 13인치 디스플레이를 장착하고 있어 현재 소비자들이 더 커다란 디스플레이를 선호한다는 점을 파악하고 제품을 출시했다고 볼 수 있겠는데요. 이처럼 최근 출시되는 태블릿PC들은 공통적으로 커다란 디스플레이를 갖춰 소비자들을 공략하고 있습니다.

디스플레이의 중요성은 커지고 있는데, 동영상은?

‘TV는 거거익선(크면 클수록 좋다)’이라는 말이 유행하고, 출시되는 태블릿PC들은 모두 대형 디스플레이를 앞세워 소비자를 공략하는 등 현재 소비자들은 전자기기를 선택할 때 디스플레이를 중요하게 생각하고 있습니다. 가장 큰 이유는 동영상 수요가 증가하면서 태블릿PC 시장이 활성화되었기 때문에 동영상을 보기 위해 더 좋은 디스플레이를 선호하는 소비자들이 늘어났다고 할 수 있습니다.

하지만 동영상 콘텐츠를 커다란 디스플레이에서 감상하는데 문제점이 발견됩니다. 바로 ‘화질’ 인데요, 현재 제작되고 있는 동영상 콘텐츠들은 주로 모바일 크기에 맞춰 제작되고 있으며 제작 여건이 여의치 않은 관계로 커다란 디스플레이에서 또렷한 화질로 감상하기에는 한계에 부딪히고 있습니다.

이러한 문제점을 개선할 수 있는 최적의 솔루션은 업스케일링입니다. 업스케일링은 화면의 해상도를 키워주기 때문에 커다란 화면에서도 영상의 화질을 그대로 유지해주기 때문입니다. 특히 AI가 적용되면서 해당 영역에 가장 적합한 화소를 생성해주기 때문에 자연스러운 화질 개선이 가능합니다. 코쿤클라우드는 온라인 업스케일링 웹사이트로 AI를 기반으로 한 업스케일링 기술을 제공하고 있기 때문에 디테일을 잃지 않으면서 화질은 개선된 결과물을 받아볼 수 있습니다.

코쿤클라우드 바로가기↓

최근 전자기기 트렌드는 커다란 디스플레이로, 팬데믹 이후 변화된 우리의 삶에 어떤 새로운 수요가 등장했는지를 보여주고 있습니다. 그리고 그 중심에는 동영상 콘텐츠가 자리잡고 있었는데요, 더 큰 화면에서 보다 실감나게 영상을 감상하고자 하는 소비자들을 만족시키기 위해서는 영상의 화질을 자연스럽게 개선시켜주는 업스케일링 기술을 주목할 필요가 있겠습니다.

동영상을 보정해주는 최적의 솔루션, 업스케일링

페이스북, 인스타그램 등 SNS는 생활 속에 깊숙이 자리잡았습니다. 스마트폰의 보급화로 따로 카메라를 들고 다니지 않아도 개인의 일상을 쉽게 기록할 수 있어 SNS를 통해 자신의 추억을 기록하고 이야기를 담는 것인데요. SNS를 이용하는 사람들도 많고, 그들이 업로드하는 콘텐츠는 다양하지만 ‘보정’의 단계를 거친다는 공통점이 있습니다.

사진을 촬영하고 보정하는 것은 선택이 아닌 필수가 되어 다양한 사진 보정 어플리케이션들이 출시되고 있으며, 아예 보정된 상태로 촬영을 할 수 있는 카메라 어플리케이션들도 꾸준히 인기를 지속하고 있죠. 하지만 상대적으로 동영상을 보정할 수 있는 툴은 잘 떠오르지 않는데요, 대신에 간편하게 동영상을 보정해주는 솔루션으로 ‘업스케일링’을 이용할 수 있습니다.

동영상에 홀린 SNS, 이제는 영상으로 기록한다!

SNS는 동영상을 선호하는 추세입니다. 인스타그램을 예로 들었을 때, 검색 후 나오는 첫 번째 인기 게시물은 대부분 동영상인 경우가 많고 ‘릴스’를 개시하면서 동영상 콘텐츠 전용 플랫폼을 만들었죠. 특히 릴스는 동영상 SNS 틱톡과 유사한 면이 많아 빠른 시간에 인기 있는 동영상 플랫폼으로 자리잡았습니다. 게다가 최근 유튜브가 급부상해 브이로그로 자신의 일상을 보여주는 크리에이터들이 증가하면서 동영상을 기록의 수단으로 이용해 SNS에 업로드 하는 사람들이 많아졌습니다.

하지만 SNS 세상 속에서 보정 없는 브이로그 콘텐츠는 외면 받기 십상인데요, 대부분의 사람들이 이미지의 전체적인 색감, 피부 톤 등을 보정하면서 퀄리티를 높이기 때문에 보정 없는 ‘날 것’의 동영상은 상대적으로 콘텐츠의 질이 하향되어 보이기 때문입니다. 이러한 문제를 해결하기 위해 많은 콘텐츠 크리에이터들은 촬영부터 보정이 되어 있는 카메라 어플리케이션을 사용하는 추세이며, 고성능의 카메라를 구입하기도 합니다.

보정 카메라 어플리케이션과 고성능 카메라 모두 영상의 퀄리티를 높여줄 수 있지만, 분명한 단점을 가지고 있습니다. 우선 카메라 어플리케이션의 경우 피부 톤을 고르게 맞춰주고, 얼굴의 장점을 살려줄 수 있지만 영상의 화질이 보장되지 않습니다. 게다가 어플리케이션으로 촬영하게 되면 화질이 떨어지는 경우가 많아 태블릿 PC나 데스크톱과 같은 큰 화면에서 보면 오히려 퀄리티가 낮아 보일 위험이 있죠. 그리고 고성능 카메라는 어떤 디스플레이에서도 또렷한 화질을 자랑하지만 가격이 매우 높다는 단점을 가지고 있습니다.

자연스러운 보정에 간편함까지 갖춘 최적의 동영상 보정 솔루션 ‘업스케일링’

그리고 업스케일링은 앞서 언급한 두 가지 단점을 보완하면서 자연스러운 보정이 가능하다는 장점까지 갖춘 최적의 동영상 보정 솔루션이라고 할 수 있습니다. 업스케일링은 화질을 개선해주는 기술인데, 사용하고자 하는 목적에 따라 자유자재로 활용할 수 있죠. 예를 들어 촬영한 영상의 해상도가 작아도 큰 TV 디스플레이에서 또렷하게 영상을 감상할 수 있도록 도와주기도 하며, 영상의 전체적인 색감을 환하게 보정하고 싶을 때도 업스케일링은 매우 유용합니다.

출처: 코쿤클라우드 유튜브

특히 최근에는 AI를 이용한 업스케일링이 주목받고 있는데요, 작은 영상이 흐릿해지는 이유는 가장 가까이에 있는 화소들의 평균값을 단순히 복사해서 붙여넣기 때문에 영상 내 경계선이 오히려 무너지게 되기 때문입니다. 하지만 AI를 활용하게 될 경우 딥러닝 모델이 화소를 예측해서 생성하기 때문에 보다 자연스러우면서 또렷한 보정이 가능합니다. 예를 들어 얼굴이 나온 영상을 업스케일링 한다면 피부는 깨끗하게 만져주면서 음영은 살리고, 전체적인 피부 톤을 화사하게 만들어줘 장점을 돋보이게 합니다.

그리고 업스케일링이 최적의 동영상 보정 솔루션으로 떠오르는 또 다른 이유는 간편하다는 점입니다. 특히 소프트웨어를 설치하지 않아도 온라인으로도 할 수 있다는 큰 이점이 있는데요, 온라인 비디오 업스케일링 사이트 코쿤클라우드는 촬영된 영상을 업로드 하면 원하는 사이즈에 맞춰 영상을 변환해주고, AI가 화소를 생성해줘 자연스러운 보정이 가능합니다. 게다가 변환 시간이 매우 빠른 편이어서 인터넷만 있다면 어디서든 빠르게 퀄리티 좋은 결과물을 받아볼 수 있죠.

코쿤클라우드 바로가기↓

업스케일링은 자연스러운 보정에 시간과 가격 부분에서도 매우 효율적인 최적의 동영상 보정 솔루션입니다. 수많은 크리에이터들이 더 나은 콘텐츠를 제작하기 위해 주력하고 있는 지금, 업스케일링을 통해 쉽고 빠르게 동영상의 퀄리티를 높인다면 콘텐츠 경쟁력을 갖출 수 있지 않을까요? 누구나 사용할 수 있는 편리한 영상 보정, 업스케일링을 경험해 보세요.