Users love Android’s flexibility and the fact that there are many functions and apps available to enrich their experience with their tablet or smartphone. Text-to-Speech or TTS is a very practical solution in many situations and there are many Android apps that are compatible with this function. For instance, you can listen to your favourite book being read aloud or hear the pronunciation of words when you are learning a new language. When it comes to TTS engines, there are different options but in order to enjoy content with great quality, it is important to consider aspects like voice sound, consistency, pace and resolution. A good TSS engine uses voices that sound very natural and some even change the pitch or tone according to the context. We will take a look at the best options to make your listening more enjoyable.
Ivona stands up for offering voices that sound great and that use more variations in the way words are said. Many TTS voices sound monotonous, artificial and are inaccurate, but Ivona succeeds at providing a pleasant experience while listening to articles or books being read out loud. It supports 13 languages including English, Spanish, German, Romanian, French and Italian. Ivona is free to download, it has a wide selection of voices and it works with many popular apps. You can use it to listen to online content or to change the voice of your virtual assistant.
If you want an specific voice and accent to access Talkback information, listen to social media notifications, read e-books and more, CereProc offers a variety of premium voices to suit your needs. You will need to pay about $1.60 USD for each voice selected, but the sound quality is impressive in most cases. English speakers can choose between Hannah (US), William (UK), Caitlin (Ireland) and more. There are also different options for French, Portuguese and German.
SVOX Classic Text-to-Speech engine
SVOX Mobile Voices brings an app that supports over 25 languages and that lets you choose from a list of over 40 female and male voices. The sound offered is quite good and while it is not easy to move from one option to another, most voices are clear and the app is suitable for getting directions while you drive, reading documents aloud or listening to call or text notifications. SVOX is available for free and some of the voice options you can choose from are UK English, Swedish, Mexican Spanish, Finnish and Czech.
This is the default option for some Android devices and it is compatible with multiple applications, allowing you to listen as the text on your screen is read aloud. You can use it with Google Play Books and enjoy your favourite story while you are doing some gardening or household chores. It also works with Google Translate, so you can listen to translations out loud to catch the pronunciation. While the voices are not as expressive and rich as what other options offer, Google TTS is a popular solution that supports a large number of languages and that is easy to set up and to use.
Acapela TTS Voices
Acapela Group has good quality and variety of voices, as well as clear sound. The app is free to download, but in order to use it you will need to buy at least one voice as an in-app purchase. The prices are between $5 and $15 USD, making it an expensive option specially when compared to an app like Ivona, which offers great quality for free. Still, Acapela worsk with any TTS compatible apps and you can use the voices with multiple functions in your Android device.
While this TTS engine from Eyes-Free project is available in over 40 languages, unfortunately the voices sound robotic and they go so fast that it is very difficult to understand, even if you are listening to your native language. However, it makes the list due to the extensive language support and the fact that it is free and easy to set up. It can be an option for those who just want to hear call/sms notifications or listen to their texts.