- FaceApp has been around since 2017, but has been going viral in the last week as people use the app to see how they would look when they’re older.
- The app’s revival has also raised security concerns over what happens to photos uploaded to the Russian app.
- The app has been downloaded by more than 12.7 million new users since July 10, according to data from app analytics firm Sensor Tower.
- More users have downloaded the app just in the past week than in the first six months of 2019, Sensor Tower says.
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An app that applies filters to people’s faces to make them look older has taken over social media and quickly went viral in the last week.
The revival of FaceApp has raised questions about how the Russian company behind the app uses data and photos uploaded to the platform. However, those concerns haven’t stopped people from downloading it in droves. Since July 10, FaceApp has been downloaded by more than 12.7 million first-time users, according to data from app analytics firm Sensor Tower.
Since it first launched in the spring of 2017, FaceApp has been downloaded by an estimated 86 million users worldwide across Apple’s App Store and Google Play, Sensor Tower reports. Millions of users have uploaded their selfies and photos to FaceApp, and watched it use artificial intelligence to apply filters that can make faces look older or younger, or swap genders, among dozens of other effects.
At this same time in mid-June, FaceApp was seeing about 65,000 new users a day. But since going viral, FaceApp has seen 1.8 million new users per day, according to Sensor Tower data. That’s an increase of of 26 times over.
In the past week, FaceApp has been downloaded more times than it has been in the rest of 2019.
The app has also garnered interest from notable celebrities like Drake and the Jonas Brothers, who have shared photos on social media showing their faces magically aging.
But taking a closer look at FaceApp’s terms of service has worried some users about what exactly they’re giving the app access to on their phones. The terms of service give FaceApp the ability to use your photos for commercial purposes, and that user data can be stored on FaceApp’s servers even after it’s deleted from the app.
FaceApp’s connection to Russia – its parent company is based there – has worried US government officials that have taken notice of the app’s growing virality. The Democratic National Committee has reportedly advised staff for 2020 presidential campaigns to delete FaceApp from their phones.
Furthermore, one of the top Democrats in the Senate, New York senator Chuck Schumer, has urged the FBI and Federal Trade Commission to investigate FaceApp because of its ties to Russia, which “could pose national security and privacy risks for millions of US citizens.”
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- The DNC reportedly sent out an alert to 2020 campaigns telling them to delete the viral aging app FaceApp over Russia concerns
- Top Democrat urges FBI and FTC to investigate FaceApp over its Russia ties