How to get started with Google Text-to-Speech

You can listen to audio books and empower many apps to 'talk' to you with Google's nifty tool.

Google’s text-to-speech tool is one of those under-the-hood capabilities that makes Android so powerful. It can enable apps to speak to you or read content aloud, which opens up lots of different possibilities.

For example, it powers Google Play Books’ ability to read and the accessibility features of Google TalkBack. As Google builds in more features and other developers tap into text-to-speech, you’ll definitely want to know what dials to turn.

In order to enable Google’s text to speech, go to settings > accessibility > text-to-speech output. Your manufacturer may have its own text-to-speech option, so you can switch over to Google’s here if you’d rather use that one.

text to speech edit

Select Google text-to-speech engine from the options.

You can also select a different default language and download any of the growing number of languages (29 at last count).

You’ll also see a speech rate, which controls just how fast or slow your device will speak to you. When you slide the bar to the right, the speech rate will get noticably faster. If your volume is turned up, you’ll get audio feedback and be able to get a better idea at just how fast or slow you want it.

Additionally, you’ll want to make sure you get updates. Touch the settings dial and on the next screen check that auto-updates are turned on. You can also force updates over Wi-Fi and send anonymous usage reports so Google can improve the service.

text to speech options

Ensure that Google text-to-speech gets proper updates.

Finally, it’s time to try some apps. Google Play Books will read some titles to you, and Google Play Newsstand will do the same with some articles. You can also try out the Talkback features on your phone or tablet to find out what it will say in regards to certain actions.

Accessibility still has a long way to go for those that need it, but this is one step in the right direction.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Google

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Derek Walter

Unknown Publication
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?