Text to Speech v1.0


#1

Hi everyone! Last Friday, the Text to Speech v1.0 app arrived on the Marketplace, hot on the heels of Beta 76. TTS v1.0 is available as a certified Marketplace app here. Grab it from the MARKET app from within Interface.

The Text to Speech app allows you to communicate in High Fidelity using Text-to-Speech synthesis.

The TTS app was inspired by our desire to give a communication option to users who can’t or prefer not to speak in VR. TTS is also a fun communication option to experiment with when hanging out with friends!

There are a few limitations of v1.0 of the app to be aware of:

  • The app only works on Beta 76 and newer.
  • The app only works on Windows, since it relies on Microsoft’s Text-to-Speech API that’s built into Windows.
  • You can’t change your TTS voice from within the app. Right now, the app automatically selects the TTS voice that the Windows API has listed as “default”. You CAN change this default from within Windows, but it’s a bit of a pain (see below).

Here’s what the app looks like:

Here’s what it’s like to use the app (in video form!):

(unofficially, i am very much looking forward to the memes that come out of you all using this app. please share your hifi tts memes with me on twitter.)

Here’s how to change Windows’ default TTS voice, which will affect the TTS voice emitted when using the TTS app in Interface:

  1. Open Start -> type “Control Panel” and press Enter
  2. At the top right, next to “View by:”, change that to “Small icons”
  3. Click “Speech Recognition”
  4. On the left, click “Text to Speech”
  5. Under “Voice selection”, pick a new voice, then press OK
  6. Restart Interface if it was open. Enjoy!

#2

Great work, @zfox, it’s awesome. Just my TTS seams to only like to speak German. I also haven’t figured out how to change that to English. If anybody knows how-to, I would appriceate that :slight_smile:


#3

Thank you @Skimi!

:sweat_smile: It seems the HiFi TTS voice is unintentionally multi-lingual!

The reason you’re seeing (or hearing) this effect is because the TTS app asks Windows: “What is your default text-to-speech voice?” In your case, Windows responds with “Here, it’s this German voice!”, and the TTS app says “OK”, and renders the speech output with that German voice.

I am guessing that your Windows language is set to German. There must be a way to tell the Windows TTS system to not use the language associated with the Windows default language, but I don’t know how to do that. :sob:

Here are a few things I have already tried that haven’t worked:

  1. (Windows 10 “Modern UI” Settings Pane) Start -> type “Text to Speech” -> press Enter -> under “Change the default voice for apps”, change the voice to something else.
  2. (Legacy UI Settings Pane) Start -> type “Control Panel” -> press Enter -> click “Speech Recognition” -> “Text to Speech” on the left -> under “Voice selection”, change the voice to something else.

To reiterate - I’ve tried both of these things, and neither of them seemed to have changed the voice that the TTS app within HiFi uses. BUT - maybe you will have better luck than me, or maybe you will find something I haven’t!

If you can figure out how to change the TTS voice, please let me know!

Also: This is in no way a promise, but I can envision a future version of the TTS app that allows users to change the TTS voice.


#4

I’d like to make a small correction to this post - there IS a way to change the voice that the TTS app within HiFi uses. Thanks to @thoys and @madman for pointing this out!

  1. Open Start -> type “Control Panel” and press Enter
  2. At the top right, next to “View by:”, change that to “Small icons”
  3. Click “Speech Recognition”
  4. On the left, click “Text to Speech”
  5. Under “Voice selection”, pick a new voice, then press OK
  6. Restart Interface if it was open. Enjoy!

#5

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