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FaceApp blocked in India: Here is how to use the app without any issue

FaceApp uses AI to predict how you will look when you get older. The filter has become viral online but Indians are having tough luck using the app.

  • Published: July 18, 2019 9:31 AM IST
FaceApp

Photo : FaceApp


FaceApp, an application that offer age filters, has gone viral overnight. The app is becoming the new sensation in the online community. FaceApp is not a new app and it has been around for more than two years. However, its new aging filter has caught internet community by surprise. The app uses its own AI algorithms to make users look younger, older, more feminine or masculine. The aging filter, which shows how you will look when you get older, has become a sensation. While Twitter is full of users posting their old age picture created using FaceApp, Indian users seem to be missing out.

FaceApp blocked in India: How to access the app

The app seems to be blocking users from India. While it is available for download on both Android and iOS in the country, people are reporting that they are unable to use it. Every time some tries to use FaceApp from India, the app is reportedly returning error. The FaceApp block is being widely reported by Indian users on Twitter. On Android, Indian users are getting “Something went wrong. Please try again” error. On iOS, users are reporting seeing error such as “The operation couldn’t be completed. (ApiRequestError error 6.)”

FaceApp’s rise to fame can be equated to that of Prisma, which turned photos into paintings. The app has already catapulted to become the No.1 free app in Apple’s App Store. It is also among the top three free apps on Google Play Store. At the time of writing, it is the fifth most trending thing on Twitter. Its old-age filter, in particular, has caught the attention of users around the world. If you are in India and unable to use the app then there is one simple solution.

All you would need is a VPN to morph to your IP address to non-Indian server. A number of users have noted that FaceApp works better with VPN in India. A number of popular VPN apps like TunnelBear and Windscribe offer a free version allowing you to browse from any country other than India. The FaceApp can be described as a revelation as to how people look at aging, which is a natural phenomena. You might also have to budge and post a picture from FaceApp to social media, where your friends might have already posted their images.

FaceApp and Privacy Issues

FaceApp‘s popularity has come at a cost though: privacy. Since the Cambridge Analytica scandal last year, all apps have their own moment of privacy scare. FaceApp is experiencing something similar right now. The app is being criticized for being made by a Russian company based in Saint Petersburg. A number of Twitter users are claiming that the app can act as front for collecting facial images. However, the real problem is not its Russian origin but its privacy policy.

“You grant FaceApp a perpetual, irrevocable, nonexclusive, royalty-free, worldwide, fully-paid, transferable sub-licensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, publicly perform, and display your User Content and any name, username or likeness provided in connection with your User Content in all media formats and channels now known or later developed, without compensation to you,” the privacy terms for the app reads.

Every time a user uploads an image, it gets transferred to a server controlled by the developer. The processing is done remotely as opposed to other apps which do on-device processing. The practice has raised eyebrows among those critical of online privacy matters. Yaroslav Goncharov, CEO of FaceApp, has refuted those claims and has confirmed to The Guardian, that the app does not access user’s entire photo library.

In 2017, FaceApp faced criticism for a filter that whitened people’s faces. It was accused of racist practice where lighter skin was deemed to be attractive. While the app has had a sketchy few years, its new found popularity is gaining popularity. If you are concerned about privacy or uncomfortable with FaceApp’s policy then you would be better off staying away from it.

  • Published Date: July 18, 2019 9:31 AM IST