Forget Siri, Apple’s new AI Audiobooks sound EXACTLY like a human voice | Tech News

Forget Siri, Apple’s new AI Audiobooks sound EXACTLY like a human voice

Apple is riding the AI wave and has brought a new feature where it offers audiobooks to users that have been narrated with the help of artificial intelligence. And unlike Siri, they sound just like humans.

By: HT TECH
| Updated on: Jan 31 2023, 15:24 IST
Amazon unveils Kindle Fire HDX
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1/9 Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon.com, poses for a photo with the 8.9-inch version of the new Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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2/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer is shown at left next to the 7-inch Amazon Kindle HDX, shown at right on the optional folding 'Origami' stand that also protects the screen when not in use in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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3/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer is shown at left next to the 7-inch Amazon Kindle HDX, right in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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4/9 The new 'Mayday' button is shown with an icon that features a question mark and the word 'Help,' on the screen of a new Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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5/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer is shown in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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6/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer is shown at left next to the 7-inch Amazon Kindle HDX, shown at right on the optional folding 'Origami' stand that also protects the screen when not in use in Seattle. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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7/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer, center, the 7-inch Kindle HDX, left, and the updated Kindle HD. Photo: AP/Amazon.com
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8/9 Amazon.com Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos introduces the all-new Kindle Fire HDX 8.9'', right, and Kindle Fire HDX 7'' tablet in Seattle.' Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren
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9/9 The 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle HDX tablet computer, much faster and lighter than the previous generations, in Seattle. (AP Photo)
Apple Books app
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Know all about Apple’s AI Audiobook feature. (Apple)

Those of you who own an iPhone must be accustomed to the robotic yet somewhat human-like voice of Siri. Apple's personal assistant for iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS devices is powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing models. However, it is quite a narrow usage of artificial intelligence as it never really gets smarter or improves over time and only does the things asked of it. However, Apple has introduced a brand new feature to its devices where it is finally moving to the deep end of AI. The Apple Books app now has AI narrators, meaning you can listen to AI audiobooks, which have been voiced using AI processes. And strangely, they sound just like humans.

Today, AI is being used for a bunch of different applications, from chatbots to robotics and even in creating audiobooks. Apple's usage of natural language processing has enabled it to generate human-like voices that not only read but also enunciate, pause and emphasize text to give you the true joy of listening to a book.

Apple brings AI Audiobooks to its Books app

Audiobooks are difficult to make. Not only do they require a lot of time and money, there is a lot of effort that goes into reading a 400-page book without sounding monotonous or losing your energy. This is why, today, only the most popular books get adapted to audiobooks because publishers need a demand for it before commissioning such work. However, this is where AI can completely change the game.

Take Apple's example. The AI-powered audiobooks are meant to expand the number of titles that can have the audiobook feature so people who love reading but do not have the time to sit down and read can still enjoy and access a large number of books. Since all you need to do is program the AI to read and contextualize sentences to make it sound interesting, the major cost is only in developing the system. After that, it would cost a fraction to create a high volume of audiobooks. And Apple is using it exactly like that.

So far, the feature is available for fiction and romance books with two different voices available. You get a female voice by an AI narrator called Madison and a male voice by Jackson. Apple is also working on non-fiction and self development voice narration, which will have two choices of voices between Helena, a female voice and Mitchell, a male voice.

To search for such books on your Apple device, just go to the Books app and search for a book. If you see ‘Narrated by Apple Books' under the name of the title and author's name in its description page, you can go ahead and enjoy the AI voice while it reads you a story.

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First Published Date: 31 Jan, 15:04 IST
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