What are your opinions on the new Siri voices?

Forum
iOS & iPadOS

I'm curious to know what you all think of the new Siri voices in iOS 14.5 and macOS 11.3.

I've tried each as my VoiceOver voice for at least some time, but so far none is sticking. It's definitely good to have more choices, but I keep coming back to Alex. For me, it's clarity (particularly at higher speech rates) just can't be beaten.

I guess that I am also adapted to the niggles and minor quirks with Alex, so the similar but different failings that come with all other voices always seem to grate.

What do you all think of the new voices? Have any of you taken the plunge and switched to using one full-time with VoiceOver?

Options

Comments

Submitted by BlackCat on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Hello
I'm impressed with the More Conversational Tone Voice 2 is Speaking. I always set Tessa to a faster speed% 63, but I prefer Siri voices at a speach rate of % 51.

Submitted by Brian Giles on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

I don't think any of the Siri voices are very good with VoiceOver, especially at higher speech rates. They even sometimes put in words or letters that aren't there. If you're reading a review about speakers and their room-filling sound, the Siri voices will say "ring room-filling sound" even though the word "ring" isn't there at all.

I've also noticed that at least with the new male Siri voice, certain words like "the" by themselves or at the end of a line will be read as "the c" even though the letter c is nowhere in the word. That could be very confusing if you're not sure what the speech said and want to know how something is spelled (yes you can review by character if you need to).

Even using the new voices with Siri, they sound so bored when they're reading. I'll probably switch back to the old female voice for that. It's good that they have some more diverse choices though.

As for VO, I've switched back to Fred on the iPhone and Samantha compact on the watch. Yeah Fred is incredibly low-fi, but with great low-fi comes great responsiveness and is the closest we'll probably ever get to eloquence or e-speak. I'm kind of surprised Apple doesn't let you use Alex or even Fred on the watch. I don't like Samantha compact, but she's better for VO than the Siri voices.

Submitted by Country music fan on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Hi everyone. I have grown really attached to the male voice. I started using it when it first came out in an IOS beta. It was more of a surprise when I didn’t even know about the new Siri voices, and something told me, for some weird reason, that I had to go into voiceover to look at the voices. I clicked on voice 2, only to be disappointed with the way she sounds. She was deleted pretty much instantly. When I clicked on voice 3, I’ve never gone back. It’s nice having a voice that sounds like my boyfriend. Finally, they bring out a more diverse dialect. He sounds like a news reporter. I thought the’d never be a voice that could take me away from samantha. I have the voice running on 2 phones and a Mac. I’m from New Zealand, so I can’t be with my boyfriend who’s in Georgia. So the voice brings me comfort while he’s away. I’ve named the voice Tyrone. So it’s really nice. Well done apple for blessing us with the new African American male siri voice. Please don’t ever take him away, I’d be devistated

Submitted by Isabelle on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

I have similar feelings as the OP. I have to do a lot of reading for work, so Alex at high speed has worked well for me for years. However, I have experimented with the new voices pretty extensively as I got them in beta. At lower rates, it can be nice for more recreational reading IMO. And, I actually quite enjoy using Siri 2 or 3 with speak screen for long pieces I do not want to have to speed read. Fun fact, apparently if you use the Siri voices for Siri or in speak scream, they use the neural engine for better speech quality. However, supposedly this same neural engine technology is not utilized when using the voices for VO. This is supposedly due to responsiveness.

Submitted by Roxann Pollard on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

I'm sure that many here will think I'm crazy for not updating to one of the new voices. But, sadly, Samantha (compact voice), as it used to be called still wins in my book, especially for high rate of speech listening. For daily use, I use 85%, when reading a Kindle book, I drop down to 70%. Every time they update voices or give us new ones, I continue to try them all, but for one reason or another, depending on the voice, I still go back to my beloved Samantha. Her clarity just cannot be beat. And yes, I am still a JAWS user and perhaps that continues to influence me. I must say the new SIRI male, or voice number three, as Apple calls him, does make me laugh. I don't know what it is about it, but I think he is trying to pretend that he is cool or something. It sounds like he has a smart **s attitude or something. Anyway, heres to hoping that someday I might switch.

I am also using the Samantha Compact voice as my main voice for Voiceover. Not really that impressed with the new SIRI voices... I'll keep trying them out though.

Submitted by Jeff on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

I've not installed iOS 14.5 yet, so I'm confused about the new Siri voices. I'm currently using the female Siri voice in iOS 14.4 and would like to continue using it. Is it still available as one of the new voices? If so, which number is it? (I understand the new voices are not named, just numbered.) If it's been replaced, which of the new voices is closest to the female Siri voice found in iOS 14.4?

Interesting. How can you tell if the Siri voices are using the neural engine or not? Does it have to do with the fact that you have to download the voices again to use with VoiceOver? That's an interesting idea to use speak screen to read longer things at a slower pace. I may keep the voices around and try that.

I have been using the Siri female, now Voice 4, for a while, and figured I'd give Voice 2 a try. I find the decline in pitch at the end of phrases took a little getting used to, and of ccourse there are quirks in pronunciation.

So far, I have resisted the urge to go back, but I reserve the right to. It's nice to have something new, and yet I do miss the old.

Same here. I like the new siri voice. I set it up as my default for siri. Heard that iOS 15 will have new accessibilities features. Hope they ad more voices with the same quality as new siri.

If you change the language of your device to something else, you can go into your VO settings and delete the Siri voices, and then change the language back. I always reboot my phone after that just to be sure the voices are gone.

Submitted by Troy on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I like the new voices but not when using with voiceover, I'm not sure about other apps but they have a really bad lag when using facebook, for example there's a 1 second pause before reading each post in the newsfeed

Submitted by Jeff on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Ok, I just upgraded to iOS 14.5 and checked out the new Siri voices. When it was announced that there were 2 new voices, I assumed there would be a male and female version of each new voice. But unless I'm missing something, there's only 1 new male voice and 1 new female voice for a total of 4 voices. Is that correct?

For me, Siri is female, so although I actually like the new male voice, I doubt I'll use it for Siri. I never really liked the original male Siri voice, anyway. I'm going to give the new female voice (#2) a go for a while. I really like voice #4, but I like #2 as well, so I'm going to use it for a while.

Submitted by Maldalain on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I did not like them. I used them for 24 hours with VoiceOver then switched back to older Siri Female voice. When you listen to the new voices closely you feel like they are recorded in low quality something like 16bit or less. If yoou remember Mary and Mike voices on Windows XP you will understand what I am saying.

Submitted by Wayne Scott Jr on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Both ste okay! But, for VoiceOverI'm using siri Voice 4. The towo new voices sound choppy To me.

Submitted by ming on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

well,
I like them.
the female is a little bit soft though
I have to turn up the vollium a bit.
and the male voice is having southern accent

Submitted by Khushi on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I used voice 2 for a really, very short time and did not like it. I found myself coming back to the US Siri female voice I use both in Siri and VO. might give the male one a try, but I always find myself coming back to that voice.

Submitted by Ekaj on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Hi all. I really like the new voices, after hearing samples of them on the Mosen at Large podcast. I'm currently using Nicky on my Mac, and she is very responsive. For whatever reason my Mac updated to 11.2.3 overnight rather than 11.3, so while I do have a few additional voices they're not the 2 new ones from Apple. I'll definitely check on my phone, but I think the new ones are there since I updated to iOS 14.5 yesterday. Update: I just double-checked and the version on my Mac is indeed 11.3, so the 2 newer ones from Apple are not here. Lol they're late to the party. I guess either that or they got to drinking and forgot to come home.

Submitted by gailisaiah on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I like voice three for Siri. He sounds like my favorite workout trainer in Aaptiv!

Submitted by DPinWI on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I returned to Voice 4 for Voice Over. I find the higher pitch easier to hear, and it is to me, more responsive. And, it's what I'm used to. I will leave the new Voice 2 for my Siri and Speak Screen voice.

I might have left the new voice on my phone if I could have had the old voice on my watch.

Submitted by Ann Marie B on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

When I updated to IOS 14.5 I switched from having Ava as my Voiceover preference to voice 2 as my voiceover preference. I like how she sounds at a speech rate of 60. I tried her as my Siri voice but switched back to Voice 4. Now Ava is deleted from my phone. :)

Hello. I'm trying to delete Voice 3 from an iPhone 12. I changed the default language from English U.S. to English Canada and discovered there was no delete button for Siri voices when in voiceover settings. Is there something I'm doing incorrectly?
Thanks.

Submitted by Jo Billard on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

I'm not impressed. Both voices grate on my nerves, and the male sounds like a gangsta to me.

Submitted by Jeff on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

To my ear, the sample of voice #2 doesn't sound like the actual #2 voice for Siri. The sample sounded higher pitch than it actually turns out to be. The sample sounded promising, but after using voice #2 for a while, I've decided to go back to voice #4. I've liked that voice from the beginning and I've not changed my mind about that.

Submitted by Will on Thursday, April 29, 2021

So far what I have tried with the listening of the Siri voices that are now available with iOS 14.5 not one particular voice sticks out in my mind however I like them all they all sound nice and clear

Submitted by Dalia on Thursday, April 29, 2021

Choice is good, but I'm choosing to stick with Alex for similar reasons to those already mentioned in this thread - it performs better at higher speaking rates for me, and also has fewer quirks in its pronunciations and behavior.

Submitted by mendi on Thursday, April 29, 2021

my subject sums it up. I still use Alex for VO on my phone and/or mac. However, I have changed my Siri voice to voice 3 and do not intend to go back any time soon. I'm on the fence if I like it on my watch, but I think I'll get used to it. I'll have to, because my only other option for the watch is Samantha, and I'm good to return to that a quarter past never. And, I'm not interested in giving up voice 3 on my phone. I wish the watch could run one Siri voice and the phone another. But, can't have everything.

Submitted by David Lai on Thursday, April 29, 2021

This was my situation. Voice 2 kept going down to a lower pitch, which makes it harder to hear. Voice 3 is very interesting, and I feel like as if it was speaking in a different variant of American accent, but I could be wrong. I liked it, but have now gone back to voice 4 as that sounds clearer, and also it sounds like the recordings I learn English with.

Submitted by Moopie Curran on Friday, April 30, 2021

I love these voices on my iPhone and Mac, I just wish apple would unlock them for use as the system voice on Mac for apps like book to speech. I agree with the person who said voice three sounds like a news reporter. I'd love to have him read me a txt file converted to audio with book to speech, but alas that's not possible yet, blah.

Submitted by Madhusudan on Friday, April 30, 2021

I don't found new voices fascinating.
The male voice seems unclear to me while using with higher speech rate.
Its only best for reading long articles by making it to around 50/55 so I am again switch with my very own Tom uUSA.

Submitted by Scott Duck on Friday, April 30, 2021

I like the new Siri voices fine but Alex is my favorite for Voice Over and I don't use Siri much so they aren't a really big deal to me. However, I did notice something interesting when playing around with them. I have a iPhone 6s and a second generation iPhone SE. On the 6s, I downloaded the voices for Siri and, once I had done that, they were available for Voice Over to use. However, on my SE, even after I had downloaded them for Siri, I had to download them again in the speech section of the Voice Over settings to make them available for VO to use. It seems as though you should only have to download a given voice once in order to use it for Siri or Voice Over. Regardless of which way that works, it seems as though it should work the same way from one phone to another. This is of no consequence to me. I just find it interesting.