Here’s what we found：
There are so many text-to-speech (TTS) apps on the market; how do you pick the right one for you? One reason for using TTS is the time it can save you, so you don’t want to waste time trawling through and testing different apps. To help you out, we took a trip down the Google Play Store and tried out their top ten apps, comparing them to Metavoicer.
1. Text to Speech (TTS), by TK Solution
This is one of the veterans of the TTS world, with over a million downloads. However, it’s showing its age. Half the screen is taken up by an ad, making it awkward to enter text and access the controls. Customization is limited, with only speed, pitch, and volume sliders. Metavoicer, on the other hand, offers over 150 different voices to choose from male or female, high or low, serious or cheerful.
2. T2S: Text to Voice – Read Aloud, by HE Soft
The voice of T2S is the one provided by your phone’s native Text-to-Speech engine, which in my case was a female, with a strong Chinese accent. No other voices are available. If you enter a web link, it simply says “web links.” Text can only be entered by typing into the box, unlike Metavoicer, which can read the content of a webpage and allows uploading Word documents, etc.
3. Narrator’s Voice- TTS, by Escolha Tecnologia
Initially, we were impressed by Narrator’s Voice, which has a helpful tutorial on first loading and a wide range of voices. However, as we tested a different voice to the default, it interrupted with a loud and jarring video ad. This rapidly became unbearable on repeated use. Metavoicer features no intrusive advertising.
4. Tell Me – Text to Speech, by Simply Complex Apps
On first opening this app, we received an error message saying, “Initialization Failed!” It asked us to send them an email quoting an error code. However, with hundreds of apps on the market, why should you work as an unpaid debugger? Metavoicer is fully tested and bug-free.
5. My Voice – Text to Speech (TTS), by My Voice App
My Voice also gave us an error message: “There’s a problem with TTS. It seems your device doesn’t have a functional TTS engine installed. My Voice will not work without this, so please go to our Help section to resolve this.” But the device we were using was the same device on which we were testing the other apps and successfully running Metavoicer. Again, it’s possible that this could have been resolved, but why use an app which requires you to download other software to work? Metavoicer is easy to use from the moment you open it up.
6. NaturalReader Text to Speech by Naturalsoft Ltd
NaturalReader begins by offering a choice of voices and languages. While it has many fewer options than Metavoicer, this is a promising start. However before you can enter any text, you are required to set up an account. It’s not clear what this is for. Still, you are expected to provide your name, phone number, billing address, shipping address, and email address even when using the free version. If you’d rather not hand over all your personal information before even trying out a text-to-speech app, and spend ages reading terms and conditions, then Metavoicer is a better choice for you.
7. @Voice Aloud Reader (TTS Reader), by Hyperionics
@Voice Aloud Reader presents a brown color scheme that may not be to everyone’s taste and opens with dense text explaining how to use the app. If you get it to speak these instructions, you’ll discover @Voice Aloud Reader spells out all words in capital letters instead of reading them, which can be irritating. Like T2S, it uses voices already provided by your phone’s Text-to-Speech engine. However, you can avoid the hassle of downloading additional voices for your phone by using Metavoicer, which comes with hundreds of voices as standard.
8. Text to Speech (TTS), by STCodesApp
This is another app that requires you to download data and change settings before using it. Specifically, it needs the Google TTS Engine set as your default and for you to download language data. When we clicked “Set Default TTS Engine,” it sent us back to the same page. We could probably have made the necessary changes via our phone’s Settings menu, but life is too short, and Metavoicer works straightaway!
9. Zueira’s Voice: Text to Speech, by Bruno Piovan
Zueira’s Voice has over 70 voices to choose from and seven languages (as compared to Metavoicer’s 500 voices and 40 languages.) However, you can’t upload documents, ebooks or web links. It’s only possible to enter short amounts of text in a single line box. Prompts of phrases such as “Please excuse me!” and noises like “aah” suggest that this app is designed specifically for people with impaired speech to aid communication. It’s a noble cause, but if you want to use your TTS app more widely, you may want to consider Metavoicer for its versatility.
10. Talk FREE – Text to Voice – Read aloud, by Abast Multimedia
The clunky name of this app seems more designed for SEO than communication, and for us, it simply didn’t work at all. Opening it after downloading took us to a blank page that said “Nothing here yet,” and invited us to press a plus symbol. That took us back to… the Google Store page! We opened again, and this time were sent straight back to the Google Store. The developer seems to feel their job is done once you’ve downloaded their app. Metavoicer, on the other hand, is a TTS app that is designed to be used.
If you’ve ever tried to find an app on the Google or Apple stores, some of this may have sounded familiar to you. The top listed apps are often there because the developers have put their time into maximizing their ranking instead of improving their apps. Annoying bugs, intrusive ads, demands for personal information or credit card details, or the need to download more software are all common problems.
If you need text-to-speech (TTS), don’t waste your time trying out ten different apps from the store. Just download Metavoicer, the simple but powerful, accessible, flexible TTS app.