PRC-Saltillo has teamed up once again with Israeli-based Almagu to allow individuals who use its speech-generating devices and iOS apps to create their own unique voices.
"PRC-Saltillo currently offers a variety of high-quality voices within its devices and apps," said Sarah Wilds, VP of Product & Service Development. "But many parents – and children and adults who use AAC – want a voice that has been created just for them, something that's as unique as the words they say on their device."
The VoiceKeeper makes personalizing a voice fun and easy. It allows adults facing the prospect of losing their ability to speak the opportunity to record their voice for later use with an AAC device. And, for children who are unable to speak, the VoiceKeeper gives them and their families the option to choose their own "voice model" to create a voice that matches them.
While there are several companies that provide the option for custom synthetic voice creation, the recording process has been lengthy, geared towards only adult readers, and has required a microphone and a computer.
A Breakthrough in Voice Personalization
Through an iOS app or computer interface, individuals can begin creating – and using – a voice in as little as ten minutes, which, said Wilds is "Simply incredible."
Getting started is simple. You choose whether you/ your family member will record the voice, or if you will ask someone to record for you. Even a few family members can create a voice! In just a few minutes, you can hear the first version of the voice.
But where TheVoiceKeeper really shines is that it continues to refine the voice as additional recordings are made. Recording in small "batches," the user can hear new versions of the voice as TheVoiceKeeper continuously processes the voice for even better definition.
Fun, Yet Practical
"I often hear from parents and teachers the desire of kids who use AAC to sound different and unique. Why shouldn't they? They dress how they want, they think and talk how they want. They want their voice to show their uniqueness as well," said Elik Gurvitz, Founder and CEO of Almagu, the company behind the software.
"The VoiceKeeper allows just that: Creating a unique voice for a family member is easy and fun. All it takes is an iPhone or an iPad – or a USB headset with a computer. With just 10 minutes of recording you can give your family member a voice like no one else's. Not only is it unique – it was created just for the child by a loved one."
The best part? "You can try the voice before you decide to purchase."
"There has been a good amount of discussion in the AAC community about increasing the number and diversity of voices that are offered," said Wilds. "This is one way that individuals can create and use a voice that is uniquely theirs, one that gives users the flexibility to create a voice that reflects unique pronunciations, accents, and more. And, it integrates into our apps and Accent devices seamlessly."
PRC-Saltillo + The Voice Keeper
A unique voice by the VoiceKeeper can be integrated into PRC-Saltillo's LAMP Words for Life and TouchChat iOS apps, and on Accent devices. Currently The VoiceKeeper is not available for Android/NovaChats, but both companies are working on making that available in the near future, said Wilds.
For pricing, installation instructions or more information, please see https://app.thevoicekeeper.com/prc-saltillo.
Almagu has been the leading text-to-speech (TTS) company in Israel since 2011. Their products are sold to major companies across a variety of sectors – from telecommunication and education to healthcare and the public sector. Their synthetic voice technology has been used for AAC communication devices in Israel since 2013, and was integrated into TouchChat Hebrew since 2014, helping thousands of users communicate.