There are a plethora of text-to-speech Chrome extensions, but which are the best of the best? We review them. See the details.
When you’re working on an important project, a high-quality text-to-speech (TTS) extension for the Google Chrome web browser can be a game-changer. All you need is an internet connection — and a device to access the internet, of course. There are many benefits to using TTS technology and speech software, including allowing listeners to translate written text to spoken word on any browser within seconds.
Below, we take a look at the five best text-to-speech Chrome extensions currently available, along with some frequently asked questions about TTS extension options on the market. But first, let’s discuss the importance of TTS technology in accessibility.
The role of text-to-speech in accessibility
One of the key benefits of text-to-speech technology is its impact on accessibility. People with visual impairments or reading difficulties can now effortlessly access digital content. Text-to-speech Chrome extensions enable individuals to listen to web pages, articles, and documents, providing them with equal opportunities to explore the digital world.
For individuals with visual impairments, text-to-speech technology acts as a virtual assistant, reading out the content displayed on their screens. This allows them to browse the internet, read emails, or engage with online resources independently. It eliminates the need for braille displays or other assistive devices, making digital content more accessible and inclusive.
Moreover, text-to-speech technology has proven to be invaluable in educational settings. Students with learning disabilities, such as dyslexia or attention deficit disorder, can benefit greatly from these extensions. By listening to the text, they can absorb information more effectively and overcome the challenges posed by traditional reading methods.
Text-to-speech technology also caters to individuals who prefer auditory learning. Some people find it easier to retain information when it is presented in an audio format. By converting written text into spoken words, these extensions create a dynamic learning environment that accommodates different learning styles.
Now, let’s explore the 5 best TTS Chrome extensions!
Speechify is a sophisticated text-to-speech application with a wide variety of engaging premium voices and an easy-to-navigate platform. Users can consume content roughly two to three times faster than when reading by sight alone, and multitasking can be easier than ever before. Speechify’s AI voice technology allows for playback up to nine times faster than human speech, and there are many engaging, premium voices like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Gwyneth Paltrow.
- The fastest playback speed of all text-to-speech Chrome extensions in the industry
- Human HD voices in English and 60+ other languages
- Access to VIP customer support
- Also available for Mac OS and Android and iOS devices
- Advanced skipping and importing features are available with paid versions
2. Natural Reader
Natural Reader allows users to upload text and images for translation into spoken word MP3 files, which can then be listened to on a wider variety of audio players. This TTS software also allows users to switch seamlessly between the Chrome extension and the mobile app for complete ease of use.
Natural Reader pricing
- Limited free version
- Pro plan: $5 per month
- Premium plan: $10 per month
Natural Reader features
- AI Smart Reader technology
- Automatic text detection and predictive text
- Includes a dyslexia font
- Multiple customization options
- More than 150 different text-to-speech voice options
- More than 20 languages
- Immersive Reader mode helps users better focus on the material they’re reading
- Keyboard shortcuts or “hot keys” for commonly-used commands
3. Read Aloud
Read Aloud is an open-source, AI-powered TTS software with multiple capabilities. Shortcut keys let users pause, play, fast-forward, and rewind text translation. The pitch, volume, speed, and other features can also be adjusted using the extension. However, it’s important to be aware that some of the extension’s features may require in-app purchases.
Read Aloud pricing
- Lifetime use is $9.99
Read Aloud features
- Read Google Docs, PDF files, EPUB files, and more via Google Play
- Default voice options like IBM Watson, Google Wavenet, Microsoft, and Amazon Polly
- Supports 40+ different languages
- Navigation via easy shortcut keys
4. Talkie text-to-speech
Talkie text-to-speech is a great application for users who have difficulty understanding their own spoken words. The Chrome extension allows for both text-to-speech and speech-to-text translation, which is useful for many people with speech and language disorders. This function also allows travelers and locals to better understand each other when interacting with one another.
- Available for Android and iPhone devices, as well as WordPress
- Translates English text to spoken word in other languages
- Also offers speech-to-text functionality
- Create your own shortcut tiles on the dashboard to automatically read a phrase of your choosing aloud
Snap&Read offers a comprehensive reading toolkit that’s designed to adapt to an array of different reading and learning styles. PDF annotations allow for markup and note taking, and the application’s unique Readability Analyzer tool allows users to determine the reading grade level of any text online.
- A free trial is available
- Snap&Read Universal is $3.99 monthly or $60 annually
- Read text from web pages, documents, images, PDF files, and more
- Choose to have text read aloud to you in 100+ different languages
- AI-powered technology adjusts complicated text to help the average user better understand written content
- Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology offers accurate text conversion from photographs and images
How to choose the best text-to-speech Chrome extensions
There are many text-to-speech extensions out there for your browser, especially in the Chrome Web Store. But with so many choices, picking the best one can be a bit tricky. Here’s what you should look for to make the process easier:
You want an extension, like the Natural Reader Chrome extension or Speechify Chrome, that sounds clear and natural, just like a real person talking. The voice should say words correctly and keep the same tone from start to finish.
With a simple right-click, some extensions even allow you to get a pop-up that reads the text to you. This way, you can enjoy listening to the text without getting distracted. A good voice quality ensures that you understand everything without straining your ears. It’s like having someone sit next to you and read out loud.
It’s great when you can change how fast the voice reads or pick a voice that you like. Some extensions even let you change how high or low the voice sounds. These options make listening more fun and personal for you.
The toolbar of some extensions, like the Text Reader extension, offers easy access to these customization features. Being able to personalize settings means you can set things up just the way you like. It’s all about making your online reading experience comfortable and enjoyable.
The extension you pick should work on all kinds of websites and with different types of text, like articles or PDFs. Some extensions even allow for image to text conversion, which is handy when you’re dealing with screenshots.
It’s also good if it works the same way on different devices, whether you’re using a computer, phone, or tablet. This ensures that no matter where you are or what device you’re on, you can still enjoy the same great experience. Plus, it’s always nice when tools adapt to your lifestyle and not the other way around.
Some people need extra help when using these extensions. For example, the ‘Read to Me’ extension highlights words as they’re read out loud. This can help people who have trouble seeing or reading.
Other helpful tools might let you make the text bigger, change the background color, or use keyboard shortcuts. The ‘extension that reads text’ or TTS extension can be a real game-changer for many. These added features make sure that everyone, regardless of their needs, can use and benefit from the extension.
Listen to other users
Before you decide, see what other people are saying about the extension. Are they happy with it? Does it work well? Their feedback can help you pick the best one. And don’t forget to check the reviews in the Chrome Web Store. Real users often share tips, tricks, and insights that can give you a clearer idea of what to expect. Their experiences can guide you to make a choice that you won’t regret.
Lastly, remember that the best extension for you might not be the most expensive one. It’s about finding the one that meets your needs and fits your budget. Try out a few, especially if they have free trials, and see which one you like best.
After all, the goal is to make reading online easier and more enjoyable for you. And with the right extension, you can transform your browsing into a delightful experience.
Experience seamless conversion with Speechify Text to Speech
Whether you’re on your iOS or Android device, or even your PC, Speechify Text to Speech has got you covered. Recognized as one of the top TTS Chrome extensions, it offers rapid playback, a plethora of human-like voices, and compatibility across various platforms. If you’re looking to transform your reading experience and boost productivity, why wait? Give Speechify Text to Speech a try today!
Is there a free text-to-speech Chrome extension?
The best free text-to-speech Chrome extension is a toss-up between Speechify’s limited free version and Talkie Text-to-Speech.
Is the Speechify Chrome extension free to use?
Speechify has a limited free version available that allows you to try the software before you buy it. You can continue using the limited free version, but you won’t have access to many of the exclusive features that make Speechify one of the best text-to-speech applications currently on the market.
What are the best text-to-speech apps for Chromebook?
You can use any text-to-speech Chrome extension on your Chromebook. They should be easy to install and navigate, but beginner’s tutorials are available online.
How do I get Google Chrome to read aloud?
Google Chrome will read aloud selected text to you when you install a free or paid TTS browser extension like Speechify. If you have issues with Chrome reading aloud, check your permissions in the browser settings.
Which TTS Chrome extension has the best premium voices?
Speechify easily surpasses the competition in terms of how many premium voices are available for users. Get access to some of the more popular voices with Speechify’s free version, or choose any premium voice in the app when you opt for the application’s full-paid version.
Which Google Chrome text-to-speech extension is best for dyslexia?
Speechify is an excellent option for those who have difficulty reading, including those who struggle with dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Speechify was founded by CEO Cliff Weitzman to specifically help address his dyslexia.
Which free voice reader has the most natural-sounding voice?
Speechify has the most natural-sounding human voices. The premium version offers a number of HD voices in multiple languages and accents to provide you with more options for your text-to-speech conversion needs.
Which is the best text-to-speech Chrome extension for Google Drive?
Speechify is a top choice for a text-to-speech plugin for Google Drive, largely due to its Immersive Reader function that helps users stay on track when reading documents, papers, or more.
Which is the best text-to-speech Google Chrome extension for Gmail?
Speechify is the best TTS option for Gmail. With Speechify, you can cut down on your time reading emails by speeding up your reading pace up to nine times, increasing your productivity.
Can I record a podcast with a text-to-speech Chrome extension?
Recording a podcast is a great way to market a product or service, or just to share your thoughts with the world. Perhaps you’re unable to record with your own voice, or you simply prefer not to but still want to get involved in the podcasting industry. The best text-to-speech Google Chrome extension can help. Choose a natural-sounding voice to read aloud the text that you write, and upload the audio files to your podcast editing software. Treat the text-to-speech file just as you would an audio file you recorded in terms of editing, syndicating, and publishing your podcast.