The Brief: Sway is a dance video app with AI features that can make someone appear to be completing various dance moves based on recorded motion data.


What Is Sway: Magic Dance?

Sway: Magic Dance is an AI-powered dance app that requires no actual dancing abilities. Sway advertises itself as “your digital stunt double” and “auto-tune for dance,” emphasizing the ease with which it allows users to create dance videos in which they are the stars.

In order to use the app, users must record themselves making a variety of motions in front of their phone camera. Then, the app’s AI technology can combine this footage with a variety of built-in and user-generated dance moves known as “motion filters” to make it appear like they are doing that dance. Sway Dance videos can be shared in the form of videos or as GIF stickers.

Super Bowl Commercial Debut #CoolRanchDance

Although it was copyright in 2019, Sway’s main online marketing push started just days before it was included in a Super Bowl ad. A 2020 Super Bowl commercial for Doritos starring Lil Nas X and Sam Elliot in a Wild West-style dance-off doubled as a Sway: Magic Dance ad. The dance moves that Nas X and Elliot completed in the commercial, with the exception of one on horseback and another involving Sam Elliot’s iconic mustache, can be accessed on Sway. Users can create videos where they appear to be completing moves including the “Saddle Slapper,” Wild, Wild Woah,” “Old Town Up-N-Down,” and more.  These variations are known as part of the #CoolRanchDance, a hashtag that included a sponsored TikTok hashtag that received over 3.5 billion views.

Sway Features

Sway’s marionette-like dances currently featured on the app include the Say So dance, The Git Up, Gangnam Style, and other viral moves. At the time of writing, Sway has received an average of 4 out of 5 stars out of 178 ratings and is currently ranked as the #28 entertainment app on The App Store.

Sway: Magic Dance App Sway App
Apple/The App Store

Videos can be shared within the app and users have the option to “remix” other users’ videos by editing and reposting them. Some user submissions are posted to the app with links to the creator’s Instagram page, but Sway currently lacks built-in social networking components such as the ability to publicly like, comment, or follow. Videos and stickers from Sway can also be saved or uploaded to TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat.

Safety & Privacy

In accordance with the Children’s Online Safety and Privacy Act, users must be age 13 or older to use the app. Sway: Magic Dance records and uses some user data, as laid out in the privacy policy by their parent company Humen, Inc. The app’s terms of use, including intellectual property rights can be found here.