New voice models are being introduced to provide ‘clearer, more natural voices,’ but that is not what we heard on our first listen.
Google’s Speech Services speech engine is being improved to improve clarity and make text-to-speech voices in Android apps sound more natural.
You can hear the difference between the old and new voices for yourself by listening to scripted soundbites on the Android Blog.
It’s also unclear what the first sentence in these US English-language recordings actually says: “Is this my gun?” Is this my deity? It appears to ask, “Is this mic turned on?” ” but that escaped me.
These are the samples of old & a new voice.
The system’s 421 voices in 67 languages are getting a new voice model and synthesizer.
The current default voice in “English-US” is being replaced by one built with “fresher speaker data,” which, when combined with other updates, results in a noticeable improvement over the previous default voice. You can also hear the updated voices in languages like “Spanish-US” and “Brazilian-Portuguese.”
According to the update announcement, people who already use text-to-speech technology don’t need to do anything to get the new voices because “everything will happen behind the scenes” with the updates being downloaded automatically.
The service is already used by a variety of native applications such as Google Maps, Google Translate, and the Android Recorder app, so chances are that if you use an Android device, you probably already use the Speech Services by Google speech engine even if you don’t realize it. The update will be available to all 64-bit Android devices over the next few weeks via the Google Play Store.
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