Time Travel via Selfies? Yes, Please! What To Know About This Instantly-popular AI Photo Trend

MyHeritage is bringing the ultimate throwback photos to everyone's feeds.

Those of us who are active on social media love a good selfie. So much so, in fact, that we are even downloading apps and signing up on websites that help make our selfies more creative. Yes, some people are turning to Lensa's Magic Avatars to get a cool cartoon vibe, but others are completely obsessed with the MyHeritage AI Time Machine.

While users are loving these peeks into their "past lives," there are also a lot of questions surrounding the new trend. How do you get the images? Is it free or do you have to pay? We'll cover it all here.

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What is the MyHeritage AI Time Machine?

MyHeritage is a website (not an app) that features an "AI Time Machine" which takes photos that you upload and uses artificial intelligence to generate "themed" images that show you throughout history. 

According to the site, "Using a number of photos of one subject, it constructs a model that can depict the same person in a variety of poses and lighting conditions that are different from those in the original photos. Then, using a series of predefined themes, it synthesizes the model with motifs from the various themes to craft photorealistic images."

While the AI photo generator only recently launched at the end of November, the hashtag #aitimemachine has been viewed over 37.5 million times on TikTok, with MyHeritage recently reporting that over 44 million output images have been generated so far.

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What "themes" does the MyHeritage AI Time Machine offer?

There are dozens of themes, or eras, available from the AI Time Machine like Greek goddess, World War II nurse, Egyptian bride, French royalty, 70s hairstyle, Futuristic cyborg, Vincent Van Gogh painting and more.

Related: #AllTheLikes: 300 Instagram Captions That Will Get Those Followers Liking Your Feed

Is MyHeritage free?

Here's where it gets a little complex. According to MyHeritage, AI Time Machine "is in its introductory launch period" which means that at certain times, they will be offering free promotions. You'll know if they're offering the free promotion if you visit their website and notice that the top of the page says "Try it now for free." During this time, you can get generate 40 images from five different themes. 

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How much does MyHeritage cost?

If you're visiting MyHeritage and they are not running the free promotion at that time, you can always return later and check again. However, if you don't want to wait, you are able to start generating your photos by paying a $12 fee. 

Related: 100 Sassy Instagram Captions for When You Are Feeling Extra Feisty

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How long does MyHeritage AI take?

MyHeritage says, "It typically takes between 30 to 90 minutes to build the initial model from your uploaded photos. You’ll receive an email when your images have been created. Once the model is ready, generating images for any theme you select usually takes a few minutes."

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Does the MyHeritage AI app have a secret meaning?

Some people are having fun going a little deeper with this trend—looking for hidden meanings based on the images that speak to them the most. TikTok user zzhilton shared, "Apparently the one you resonate with the most is one of your past lives? And that is right up my alley, so I did every theme possible." 

Others are awestruck by the similarities between the way they look in these photos and images they have of family members in the past. This takeaway is less of a secret meaning—but is filled with wonder and amazement all the same.

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