How about giving voice to your websites, digital documents, or mobile applications? Interesting, even essential, isn’t it? Speech synthesis is widely used in the context of many weather-type services or even in stations. All this to say that text to speech has been part of our daily lives for a long time.
The advent of the voice is inevitable! In this era where artificial intelligence is in full swing, it’s hard not to mention the revolution of digital assistants such as Google Assistant, Alexa, Cortana, among others.
It’s time to dive into the heart of the matter: text to speech in itself. What is that? How does it work? And what are its benefits? You will find all the answers as you read.
Text to speech: definition, principle, and operation
Text-to-speech brings together a set of tools for automatically producing artificial speech, the goal being to promote accessibility. The texts are thus transformed into words thanks to a synthetic voice integrated into the device.
With the pace at which technological innovations evolve, many text-to-speech solutions are emerging. However, the technique of virtual voice to read a text proves to be more efficient.
Concretely, the creation of TTS software can be broken down into four stages:
- Identification and correction of “anomalies” in the text (acronyms, numbers, units)
- Restoration of the pronunciation of the text – transcription of the orthographic text in the form of phonetic text
- Text structuring – the prosody of the text
- Synthesis speech production
This technology gives pride of place to the Text-to-Speech (TTS) application which, unlike Speech-to-Text software (automatic speech recognition), transforms textual content into audio format. But the applications go much further and more specifically concern disability communication aids, computer-assisted teaching tools, or even video games. 3 of the best TTS software programs are: Voicely, Speechelo and Talkia.
To meet the needs of the greatest number, it is not only a question of producing an ultra-sophisticated phonetic transcription. For people with a visual impairment, we prefer an accessible solution in order to understand quickly. Conversely, the expressiveness of the voice represents a major asset in the toy industry.
Anyway, it is clear that there are many reasons for using text to speech.
Benefits of text to speech software
Speech recognition software allows you to dictate text instead of writing it by hand. Whether you are a lawyer, doctor, secretary, journalist, or business owner, voice recognition allows you to work 3 times faster.
You will be able to write your e-mails, reports, letters or even a note to be processed by your secretariat. Speech recognition allows you to create content 3 times faster than writing it in the traditional way.
This system is particularly useful when you need to quickly transcribe an interview, a meeting, or your own thoughts. This means you spend less time typing and devote yourself to other tasks.
2# Easy to switch voice
Speech recognition allows you to create documents from all your devices from your desk, in transport, or at the end of a meeting when the discussions are still fresh in your mind. And it has made it very easy to switch to any kind of voice.
Voice notes are especially useful for keeping your thoughts in mind when you’re traveling and don’t have a pen handy. Voice commands allow you to format a document without touching your keyboard. Moreover, you just have to think out loud and your ideas are transcribed into a document which, once edited, will be usable by you or by your collaborators.
3# No accent
There are many types of accents available in the software which works flawlessly. As mentioned earlier, typical Text-to-Speech (TTS) applications have nothing to do with voice response units. These work from sentences pre-recorded in a database. They are indeed more complete and better meet the increased requirements of users with real needs.
In Text-to-Speech software, sentences are generated from graphemes and phonemes of the language. For this, the TTS engine uses two complementary systems: a front-end and a back-end. While the front-end ensures the coherence of the phonetic transcription and builds the texts into sentences, the back-end (synthesizer) is responsible for the conversion into sound.
4# Easy to use different languages
Besides the functional aspect of TTS technology, its intelligence never ceases to amaze. Ease to use different languages, deep learning, a type of artificial intelligence, contributes to the building by improving the quality of the voice synthesizer. The sound is much more natural with characteristics (rhythm, pronunciation, inflection) almost identical to the voice of a human speaker.
5# Text to speech software is cheap
As compared to hiring a real actor for voiceover work, it is a very cheap and fast method to use text to speech software. It gives you the liberty to convert any text into voice at any time without much hassle.
Some other benefits of text to speech software
Text-to-speech primarily affects an audience with a real need, such as visually impaired people who easily access content thanks to Text-to-Speech. By making it possible to phonetically transcribe a text, the virtual voice makes it possible for the blind or visually impaired to “read” the document. In addition, anyone with reading difficulties is concerned.
But when you look at it, artificial speech is for everyone and is not just a text-to-speech technology for people with disabilities only; it is now possible to read a text without having to stare at the screen and we could not ask for better. Thus, you can have access to the content of your emails or a web page simply by requesting it. This technology is found in particular in the field of user interfaces such as voice assistants, video games, the Internet of Things, among others.
New technologies have allowed the emergence of tools that allow you to work more efficiently by developing productivity within your company. This is the case with voice recognition programs, which make life easier for all entrepreneurs who use dictation or those who write regularly.
Speech recognition allows you to work more freely, improves your efficiency, and saves you time and money, so why go without? Start by testing free software and once you’re convinced, you can choose a solution that meets your needs.
Use Voicely, Talkia or Speechelo for text-to-speech?
Which software is the best to use for text to speech? We have compared 3 of the best pieces of software for you. Just check out our comparison and see which of these 3 will fit your needs.