Say what I type

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    Text to speech apps are an assistive technology in content creation, business, and education. Here’s how you can have them say what you type in real time.

    Say what I type

    Have you ever wondered, “Is there an app that can say what I type?” The answer is yes.

    Typing takes up a lot of our time, be it in school, at work, or just during our free time. For others, typing is their livelihood, so making those fingers run over the keyboard as fast as possible is paramount. If you’re in such a position, you also know that proofreading is just as strenuous, which doesn’t help in the slightest. But what if you could get real-time audio feedback while you’re typing? Well, with text to speech (TTS) tools, you can.

    Here’s everything you need to know about apps that say what you type.

    Use text to speech to say what you type

    Getting auditory feedback on what you’re typing is actually pretty easy. You can use this technique when composing e-mails, working in Google Docs, wrapping up some transcription work, or even messaging friends on your iPhones.

    The simplest way to hear what you’re typing in real time is to install a text to speech tool or use it as a browser extension. Use TTS by typing or pasting what you want to hear, and have your device say the text out loud that you’re working on as you go.

    If you’ve ever used TTS apps, you know that most of them are quite versatile. They can narrate e-mails, webpages, e-book files, PDFs, and everything under the digital sun. The versatility doesn’t stop there, as they can also be set up so that it can go on reading as you type, giving you a good idea of how your text is flowing.

    The difference between text to speech vs. speech to text

    We’re talking about TTS here, but we do want to clarify the difference between text to speech and speech to text, as these are very different types of software.

    Text to speech (TTS) and speech to text (STT) are both technologies related to voice and text, but they serve opposite functions. TTS involves converting written text into audible speech, allowing users to listen to written content like e-books, articles, or instructions. This is especially useful for visually impaired individuals or for multitaskers who prefer to consume content audibly.

    On the other hand, STT converts spoken language into written text. This technology powers applications such as voice assistants, transcription services, and voice-activated commands. Speech to text software can also be called dictation. Apps that use voice commands also utilize speech to text, such as asking voice assistants like Siri to send a text message for you.

    While TTS provides an auditory experience of written content, STT facilitates the documentation and processing of spoken information.

    Benefits of using a text to speech application

    We’ve already mentioned how hearing what you type can help you save a lot of time, but there are way more reasons why you should give this text to speech technique a go.

    It’s good for students

    TTS apps are not just time-savers—they have plenty of uses outside the office,like in the classroom. If you’re working on an essay or writing a story for your creative writing class, you already know how important it is to make sure everything’s spotless, from grammar to spelling to overall clarity.  

    With a high-quality TTS tool, you can not only see how your text flows on paper, but you can also listen to it and see how well it would sound like when read aloud. That’ll give you better insight into your own work, making sure you’re getting closer to your goal with each word.

    It’s a great language-practicing tool

    Since we’re going on about education, we can’t not talk about foreign language learning. Most of us have tried it, and it was probably something online that we did. But, no matter whether you’ve got a tutor, a teacher, or you’re working alone, getting audio feedback while you’re typing in a foreign language is priceless.

    What’s more, most TTS tools nowadays (at least the more sophisticated ones) support tons of different languages. Something like Speechify can help you type in English, Portuguese, Hindi, Tamil, Bulgarian, Slovak, Slovenian—you name it.

    Improve productivity

    Of course, the biggest benefit of any TTS tool and technique is that they are life-savers when it comes to boosting productivity. There are not many other apps and solutions that will help you stay ahead of your schedule if you work in an office or corporate environment.

    You can use TTS apps while you are commuting to work to check your e-mails before you’re even at your desk, you can use them as an accessibility feature on your website, and so on. A lot of your clients will appreciate extra ease of access, especially those with reading difficulties and poor vision who need some kind of audio feedback while typing and reading.

    Natural-sounding voices

    What’s great about apps like Speechify is their assortment of natural-sounding AI voices. With advancements in speech recognition and assistive technology, we are now able to provide everyone with pleasant, authentic voices in multiple languages instead of relying on those robotic noises we used to call text to speech years ago.

    Authentic voices will let your clients know you’re serious about your work, but they will also make those language learning classes we mentioned easier and more productive. Simply find suitable reading material and let your TTS app read it for you. Don’t forget that some TTS apps work with popular languages (Italiano, Français) and even less popular languages (Croatian, Marathi, Ukrainian, Catalan, Romanian, Finnish, Latvian, etc.) alike.

    Grammar and orthography

    The devil is in the details, as they say, and that’s more than true when it comes to writing. Commas, new lines, new paragraph breaks, columns, question marks, and all other types of punctuation marks are a nightmare for some. Fortunately, there are TTS apps that can read these out for you as well, or rather, not read them when you miss them. That will save you a lot of time, as you won’t have to proofread it all extensively once you’re done.

    Use Speechify to type and say what you want to hear

    Speechify—we’ve already alluded to it a few times, but we ought to expound on it a bit before we conclude. What is it, and what can it do to help you out if you want to hear what you type?

    Speechify is a TTS app and a Chrome browser extension with a wide variety of uses. It’s a fantastic dubbing tool, a versatile reading assistant, an audiobook maker, and everything else text to speech related in and between you can think of. 

    Additionally, Speechify has everything you’ll need to accommodate your learning and business goals. It works on all major platforms like Microsoft Windows, Android, and iOS, and it supports dozens of languages. As such, Speechify is at the forefront of say-what-I-type software solutions.

    What truly sets Speechify apart from the competition, especially some older apps, is that it is fully customizable and features high-quality AI voices in multiple languages (there are also celebrity options). Use Speechify to say what you will want in natural-sounding voices. Once you start playing around with the settings, you’ll be able to hear your words read out loud at just the pace you like, in your favorite accent, and with just the right tone.

    Get started with the free version of Speechify today, or check out the premium version if you want to add even more TTS features to work with.

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman

    Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.

    Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify Dyslexia & Accessibility Advocate, CEO/Founder of Speechify

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