Text-to-Speech: Pros, Cons, and Top 5 Tools in 2023

By Gabriel Mattys | September 19, 2023

Hey there! You know, technology is like that ever-evolving beast, always coming up with new tricks to amaze us. One such trick up its sleeve is Text-to-Speech—or TTS for short. This isn’t just some robotic voice reading out your texts; it’s far more than that. Jogging and ‘reading’ an ebook at the same time, or learning a new language from a machine that sounds almost human. It doesn’t sound like a sci-fi movie anymore. It’s our reality. It’s happening, right here, right now. Ready to find out how this tech marvel is redefining the way we interact with information? Let’s dive into the details!

Text-to-Speech Unlocks a New Realm of Possibilities

Text-to-speech (TTS) is a type of assistive technology that reads digital text aloud. It’s sometimes called “read-aloud” technology. So, why the buzz? Well, text-to-speech offers a range of compelling advantages. 

First off, it’s a game-changer for accessibility. Folks who struggle with reading, whether due to impairments or literacy challenges, now have an alternative way to absorb information. Then there’s the educational value. Pairing sight and sound fosters better understanding and memory, supercharging e-learning. Imagine having the freedom to turn any digital text into an audio guide, digesting news or PDFs while jogging or cooking. Thanks to cloud computing, you can have all this, fast and cheap.

But let’s move from the “what” to the “how”—how exactly is TTS shaping our daily lives across different sectors?

Real-world Applications: TTS is More than Just a Talking Gadget

  1. Traffic Control and Monitoring: Forget your standard, droning traffic alerts; TTS is now the cool, effective cop on traffic duty. It helps officials efficiently remind and reprimand road users, covering areas that were humanly impossible to monitor before.

  2. A reminder of Due Date and Customer Bill: Think of it as your personal, digital bookkeeper, tidying up your finances by sending you timely bill reminders in the business sector.

  3. Multitasking with Audiobooks: In the new age, reading is not just for the eyes. You can now listen to books while doing chores or working out, thanks to TTS’s natural narration abilities.

  4. Assistive Devices for Special Needs: TTS isn’t just reading out texts; it’s enabling the elderly and those with visual impairments to engage in activities they previously couldn’t—like cooking.

  5. Language Learning: For students of foreign languages, TTS is a practical tutor, offering authentic accents and rhythms across 50 languages and 150 voices.

  6. For Multilingual Homes: It’s like a private language tutor for kids who speak one language at home but need to learn another for school or community life.

  7. A Voice for the Speechless: Remember Stephen Hawking? His use of TTS tech paved the way for others with severe speech disorders to communicate.

  8. Travel and Tourism: Tourists and business travelers can benefit from real-time announcements, navigational directions, and even self-guided audio tours, thanks to TTS integration in public areas.

  9. Banking and Finance: Even big banks like HSBC have embraced voice tech, allowing customers to skip the tedious number and password game and get straight to managing their finances.

So, while TTS is revolutionizing the way we consume text, it’s also weaving itself into the fabric of various industries. Whether it’s managing finances or helping us learn new languages, TTS is not just talking—it’s speaking volumes.

Navigating the Double-Edged Sword of AI Voice Cloning

In today’s fast-paced world, where technology is continually reshaping our lives, artificial intelligence (AI) is making waves, notably in voice technology. While there’s no doubt that these advancements have made our lives more convenient, they also come with their share of dark clouds, especially when it comes to AI voice cloning. This emerging tech may appear as the next big thing but poses serious threats that can’t be overlooked, particularly in sectors that are built on the bedrock of trust, authenticity, and human interaction.

1. Financial Sector: It’s a bitter truth that AI voice cloning can endanger financial systems. Institutions that have been putting faith in voice-based authentication may find themselves in hot water. Just think of the havoc that can be unleashed if someone gains unauthorized access to accounts, or worse, commits identity fraud. Suddenly, the trust and security that financial institutions have spent years building could crumble overnight.

2. Customer Service and Call Centers: Here’s another industry that depends heavily on voice interactions. Imagine receiving a call from what you think is your service provider’s customer service, but it’s actually a scam artist on the other end. The potential for social engineering attacks and phishing scams here is staggering.

3. Law Enforcement and Security: The dangers don’t stop at commerce. Law enforcement agencies could be blindsided by criminals using voice cloning to deceive and manipulate audio evidence. This not only hampers investigations but also severely compromises the integrity of legal proceedings.

4. Media and Journalism: In an era of “fake news,” the media is already battling a credibility crisis. AI voice cloning exacerbates the issue by making it harder to verify the authenticity of voice recordings. The result? A further erosion of public trust.

5. Entertainment Industry: Creative professionals also have cause for concern. From musicians to performers, anyone’s voice can be copied and distributed without permission. This opens a Pandora’s box of copyright issues and potential revenue loss.

6. Politics and Public Figures: Last but not least, let’s talk politics. AI cloning can generate fake statements or endorsements, causing irreparable reputational damage. And the fallout could affect not just individual careers but also the larger democratic process.

Given the potential risk, it’s vital for these sectors to remain one step ahead. They must actively implement measures to detect and counteract AI voice cloning. Equally important is educating the public about the risks, and encouraging a culture of vigilance. The responsibility doesn’t just lie with the industries at risk; it’s a collective one, requiring attention from each one of us.

5 best text-to-speech generators in 2023

There are many great text-to-speech generators on the market, with each one offering its own unique set of capabilities and applications. Here are the 5 best text-to-speech generators on the market:

The platform has lent its voice—quite literally—to a multitude of sectors. From spicing up entertainment channels to making banking less of a bore, it’s making an impact. 

LOVO has recently launched Genny, a next-gen AI voice generator equipped with text-to-speech and video editing capabilities. It includes more than 500 AI voices, each meticulously crafted to cover over 20 emotions and a whopping 150 languages. That’s not merely a feature; that’s a revolution in customization.

Here’s the crunch:

  • A library teeming with over 500 AI voices. Check.
  • A fine-tuning setup that lets you mess around with pronunciation, emphasis, and pitch. Check.
  • On-the-fly video editing while you’re generating voiceovers. Yep, that too.
  • A stockpile of nifty extras like non-verbal sounds, free music, and stock visuals.
  • Click-button localization for content in 150 languages? You bet.

Murf stands out of the crowd in the world of text-to-speech generators. From business leaders mapping out their next big venture to podcasters striving for that perfect soundbite, Murf is the go-to platform for professionals across the board.

With an assortment of voices and dialects at your disposal, you’re spoilt for choice. Beyond text-to-speech, Murf offers a one-stop-shop experience with its comprehensive AI voice-over studio. It even includes a video editor, allowing you to create full-fledged videos complete with voiceovers. With access to over 100 AI voices across 15 languages, your project can resonate globally, tailored to your desired speaker characteristics, accents, and even emotional tones.

One nifty feature worth highlighting is Murf’s voice changer. Don’t feel like using your own voice? No problem. Murf allows you to record voiceovers without stepping up to the mic. You can alter the pitch, control the speed, and adjust the volume to fit your project’s mood. 

Quick Overview: Murf’s Noteworthy Features

  • A broad library featuring more than 100 AI voices in various languages
  • Ability to convey emotion through expressive speaking styles
  • Convenient options for both audio and text input
  • Built-in AI Voice-Over Studio for holistic project handling
  • Versatile customization options, from tone to accents

Speechify is your personal, on-demand narrator that’s ready to vocalize anything you throw at it—from PDFs and emails to articles and documents. 

So, what sets Speechify apart? First off, it’s like having a multilingual friend who speaks more than 15 languages. Whether your text is in English, Spanish, or even Mandarin, Speechify can read it aloud in a language you understand. It’s not just the language flexibility that impresses; it’s also the range of over 30 natural-sounding voices that give you the feel of a human narrator. 

One particularly useful feature? The tool can transform even scanned printed text into speech. Those ancient, yellowing pages or even your morning newspaper can be instantly converted into listenable content. 

Quick Peek into Speechify’s Top Features:

  • Web-friendly: Extensions for both Chrome and Safari
  • Multilingual: Supports over 15 languages
  • Diverse Voice Range: Choose from over 30 natural-sounding voices
  • Scan and Speak: Convert printed text into audible audio with ease


Synthesys specializes in transforming plain text into dynamic voiceovers and even full-fledged videos. Synthesys is redefining what AI-generated audio-visual content can do for you. And it’s not just about reading out text. We’re talking about an intuitive platform that creates professional-grade voiceovers and videos, literally at the click of a few buttons.  

Synthesys Text-to-Speech (TTS) and Synthesys Text-to-Video (TTV) technologies take your script from flat to fully dimensional. You’re not just stuck with robotic or monotonous voices either. With a library boasting 34 female and 35 male professional voices, you can find the right voice to match the tone and mood of your content.

Top features:

  • A massive library of 34 Female and 35 Male voices
  • Ability to create and sell unlimited voiceovers for varied purposes
  • Hyper-realistic voices that outshine competitors
  • Fine-tuned emotional expression, from happiness and excitement to sadness
  • Convenient pause feature for a more human touch
  • Quick preview mode to avoid time-consuming rendering
  • Applicable to a range of media, including sales videos, social media, TV commercials, and podcasts.

And, the last on my list is Eleven Labs, which I use personally. Eleven Labs, an innovative company that provides cutting-edge AI voice generation solutions, explores its capabilities, pricing, ethical considerations, and alternatives.
ElevenLabs’ team claims their AI software creates the “most realistic and versatile voices.” Does it hold up? Well, after testing, I’d say they’re onto something quite promising.

They’ve recently launched a model called Eleven Multilingual v2, which is not your run-of-the-mill voice generator. This thing has been developed over 18 months of studying human speech markers, and it aims to produce ‘emotionally rich’ AI audio. The result is a model capable of discerning nearly 30 languages, but it doesn’t just stop at understanding them. This platform goes the extra mile by injecting the written text with emotional context and a unique vocal flavor.

This isn’t just about turning text into speech; it’s about giving that speech the human touch. Your synthetic voice can now laugh, cry, or sound excited, all while maintaining the nuances of your native accent across 28 languages. That’s right—authors who wish to tell stories can clone their voices, so their narratives hold consistent emotional resonance, regardless of the language they’re translated into.
But the wow factor doesn’t end there. Alongside this update, they’ve also amped up their security features. So, your voice isn’t just versatile and emotionally charged—it’s also safe.

As for language diversity, the update has expanded far beyond the basics like English, Polish, or Spanish. Now it can verbalize languages as varied as Classical Arabic, Filipino, Czech, and even Tamil.

Clearly, ElevenLabs is not just expanding the footprint of text-to-speech; they are pushing its emotional and linguistic boundaries. So, whether you’re a storyteller, a business owner, or simply someone keen on multilingual communication, the future of voice tech seems not just bright, but emotionally vibrant and globally inclusive.

So, let’s circle back to why you’re here. TTS isn’t just a computer voice reading your emails. It’s changing how we learn, communicate, and even how we navigate our lives. From helping people with disabilities to adding a whole new layer to multitasking, this tech is making waves.

But it’s not all rosy. Just like any powerful tool, TTS and voice cloning have a dark side, especially when it comes to trust and security. So, whether you’re a business or an individual, it’s crucial to be aware of both the pros and the cons.

So what’s next? If you’re as excited about this tech as we are, maybe it’s time to incorporate it into your life or business. With so many applications, the sky’s the limit.

Your Next Step in the AI Journey

At GMCOLAB, we can help you leverage the power of AI. We are a Belgian IT company based in Antwerp. If you’re looking for a software development company, feel free to contact us.

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