Best text-to-speech (TTS) engine apps for Android: no more robotalk

Best text-to-speech (TTS) engine apps for Android: no more robotalk
You'll really appreciate your phone's text-to-speech capabilities when you are learning a foreign language, for example, and need to hear how that strange word is pronounced before you embarrass yourself in public.

Well, it comes in handy in many other situations, too, especially when you can't get your grubby mitts to the display, but rather need your next turn, incoming caller, text or email read out loud to you, like during driving. TTS engines are also important for 3rd party apps which need to integrate speech synthesis for a more complete experience, like the numerous voice-controlled assistants that have invaded the Play Store.

Android's default speech synthesizer is decent, but not always present from the box, and if it's there, it sounds modeled after Stephen Hawking's first TTS machine, and not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to languages, hence manufacturers are often making their own combos - Samsung and LG each have their text-to-speech sets preloaded, for instance. 

The trouble with those is that they are usually loaded with the area settings where the phone is supposed to go, or you have to go to third party app stores to get different language packages or high quality pronunciations, like with Samsung's own TTS engine. That's why we are rounding up some of the best text-to-speech engines available in the Play Store to show that you don't have to settle with the limited monotony that typically comes with your handset out of the box.

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4 Comments

1. NickPeters

Posts: 74; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

This IVONA, damn, it surely does sound almost real. Nice job!

2. FlushGordon unregistered

They need to copy Morgan Freeman's style.

3. TheMan

Posts: 494; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

That would be great. I'm also imagining a Samuel L Jackson one, too. Sorry, it's been a long day already.

5. ThomasVanVliet

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 04, 2018

I have ample experience with various TTS providers for the development of news reading apps. One advise; take utmost caution when dealing with Neospeech. I have lost thousands of dollars on this TTS platform. When it comes to their VoiceText TTS or SDK , once you have invested in installing it into your environment and are ready to deploy to production they will unilaterally change contract terms. The deductible developer license is actually not deductible from the production license fee and they will add steep royalty costs to their regular pricing. They pulled the plug on my app without notification. I lost $4000 on a developer license and setup apart from the SDK programming costs. Months of correspondence including their CEO Devin Lee but I was never even dignified with an answer. On the bright side; I’m currently quite enthausiastc about AWS Polly. Very transparent and competitive pricing and obviously a much more reliable provider. If you want to know more about my TTS experience with Neospeech Inc. or my current development with AWS Polly drop me a line.

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