Alternative App to Voice Dream Reader

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iOS & iPadOS

Hi there!
Looking for alternative app to VoiceDream Reader to listen to audio books and to read them with my braille display.
Thanks.

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Submitted by KE7ZUM on Thursday, April 15, 2021

why? voicedream is actually a pretty good app, always has been. What could make voicedream better for you? what experiences are missing. Note I am not the developer, just curious.

Submitted by Labsii on Thursday, April 15, 2021

You may want to try my app Speech Central https://apps.apple.com/rs/app/speech-central-voice-reader/id1127349155

To answer why even to consider it over Voice Dream Reader:
- it has a free tier so you can try it before you buy it and if you are fine with being limited to add two smaller texts a day or one long a month you can even use it without any cost
- for unlimited usage it is almost 3x cheaper
- it has similar feature set and it even has dozens of features not available in Voice Dream Reader (most notably reading of Headlines and adding articles from there, many customizations, export with comments and bookmarks to Microsoft Word)
- it has a Mac version that can sync with iOS (licensed separately)
- it has been updated with at least one new feature each month in the last five years
That’s top of the mind, possibly there is some more.

Speaking of that I must stress that Voice Dream Reader is a good application that is worth to be considered, just not that much that all other apps should be ruled out.

Submitted by Jeff on Friday, April 16, 2021

In reply to by Labsii

How does Speech Central compare to Voice Dream Reader with respect to audiobooks? VDR is my favorite audiobook player for audiobooks in mp3 format, but the Audible app is even better and my absolute favorite audiobook player because it works so well with my airPods. If Speech Central works like the Audible app, I'd switch in a heartbeat.

Submitted by Maldalain on Friday, April 16, 2021

In reply to by Labsii

I have just purchased the app, I liked the interface and the navigation controls. The interface seems to me more refined than that of Voice Dream. However, I have both apps and they somehow complement each other.

Submitted by Labsii on Friday, April 16, 2021

In reply to by Maldalain

Thanks. I agree that apps do complement each other and it is the best to have them both when possible.

My point was that Speech Central is worth considering. By offering the similar feature set at 3x less I think it is fair to say that Speech Central delivers higher value, but Voice Dream Reader still has its pros. It is good that people have the choice.

Speech Central doesn’t address audiobooks. It is focused on text to speech and imports all sort of content regarding that including standard books.

I encourage you to try Speech Central as it has a free tier and it is the best to check how it fits to you that way.

Submitted by Ryder on Friday, April 16, 2021

I really like Voice Dream for listening to various web articles but don’t like synthetic voices reading books. Love Voice Dream Writer for word processing.

Why don’t you sign up for BARD? It is free, you get any book or books you want and they accommodate Braille. Or you could relax and listen to a real person narrate. It is fantastic.

Submitted by Chris Hill on Friday, April 16, 2021

Nothing is going to fix Braille in Voice Dream until Apple fixes their issue in IOS, Kindle and iBooks have the same problem.

Submitted by Dawn 👩🏻‍🦯 on Sunday, April 18, 2021

To be honest I don't think there's an app that's either comparable or different than Voice Dream. I have all 3 VD. apps now. To be honest I don't know what I ever did with out VDR. When I first got my ipad, I really hadn't heard about it. Plus, after a not that great experience with Capti Narrator, I was a little leary about trying 3rd party apps with Bookshare. Add that to the fact that I was just starting out and didn't know too much about this kind of stuff.

But, I kept hearing about it, and some time around June, I really started giving this app some consideration. I found that Bookshare's app, which was what I was using, or rather not using very much, was very lacking. In voice choices, and features mostly. I found and listened to a podcast demoing Voice Dream Reader, and was instantly sold. I immediately went out, and spent $14 on Voice Dream reader, in June, and haven't looked back since. While I have Read2Go Bookshare's app, I find myself not using it @ all. If I'm being honest, I kind of regret forking over $20 for it. lol

When I get some braille equipment, I hope to continue using Voice Dream apps on it, and with it. Especially Voice Dream Reader.
Only gripe is that it doesn't work with Microsoft Word docs. Which is what I deal with a lot, in some shape or form. But, that's not a dealbreaker. Although I would be open to ideas for alternatives like VDR that play nice with Word, as long as they're free. So, if that's the issue and you deal with Word docs heavily, then I can understand where you're coming from. Because that's really my one gripe.

The only app I think that might come close to comparing to Voice Dream, is the Dolphin Easy Reader app. I downloaded it to give it a try, just because I like doing that kind of stuff, and it was free so I figured I'd assuage my geeky curiosity. Plus, I believe that it's good to know what your options are and which one works for you. Or if in the rare case that both options end up working for you and complimenting each other. I will confess, though, that I didn't like Dolphin very much. In spite of listening to the podcast on AppleVis on it before downloading it. Although maybe it was because I was so used to and biased towards VDR. Or maybe it was because I just didn't spend enough time with it. But I found Dolphin to be a bit clunky, and when I went to look @ the voices out of curiosity, I found you couldn't sample any of them before purchase. For me, that's a bit of a dealbreaker, because before I purchase a voice, I want to listen to a sample of it to see how it sounds. And as a personal preference see how human-like they sound, since I like more human-sounding TTS voices like Ava Inhanced on my ipad, or Sally on VDR.

Hope this helps you, for what its worth, and I hope you find something that works for you, or that compliments VDR to meet your needs.

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