A bug with IOS 10

iOS and iPadOS

Dear All,
A small bug with IOS 10 but one that really makes me angry every time I hear it.
hen I get a notification from for example BBC News that gives the essentials of a story and the time I was notified, let's say four minutes ago, VO says four Metres, rather than four minutes.
I guess that when VO sees the letter M it assumes that it means metres?
Also, the bug where for example, the word 'now' is spoken, VO still misses off the letter 'W' and says 'No'.




Submitted by Lukas on Thursday, September 15, 2016

I personally encounter screwed up pronunciations for my native language which is Czech almost all the time. With every new version of iOS, some words that were previously pronounced incorrectly (either entirely mangled or inproperly according to the used context) have been fixed but others have been added. It's just a common nuisance for me that I hardly ever notice any more. But that's exactly the reason why the pronunciation dictionary feature was added in iOS 10. I know that as soon as I get myself the iPhone 7 Plus (a way needed upgrade from the 4S), I'll be using this new cool feature all the time. :-)

Submitted by Troy on Thursday, September 15, 2016

What voice are you using? I'm using Alex and don't recall vo saying meters instead of minutes. If it's Samantha then that wouldn't surprise me.

Submitted by steven carey on Thursday, September 15, 2016

In reply to by Lukas

Hi Troy,
As I'm in the UK, I use Daniel enhanced. I'm not saying that I don't like or use any of the US English voices because I do but I'm used to Daniel now so that's the one I usually go for.
If I'm reading an ebook thriller which is set in the US (my favourite), then I'll use a US English voice but Daniel is my favourite for day-to-day stuff.
I understand from others on this forum that the 'NO' problem has been around for some time when using Daniel but I thought that Apple would have fixed it by now. However, I don't know whether the problem with letters being mistaken for words that do not make sense, for example, 'M' which should be minutes but spoken as metres instead is a voice, location or bug problem. Do you folks in the US have similar problems as this?


Submitted by thunderhorse82 on Thursday, September 15, 2016

This may depend on the voice you use, I use Alex and don’t experience this.

Submitted by Maya Pureseva on Thursday, September 15, 2016

Hi, I'm running Serena, and she's saying meters, and number instead of no, and something else quirky, just finished up reporting that one. Same with Kate, should check it on any American voice, but all the British voices are behaving exactly the same way.

Submitted by david s on Thursday, September 15, 2016


I think all the voices have their own quirks, just like different folks have different quirks.
Fred, for example, does not say his name correctly. When you click on speak sample, he says “Hello, my name is Red.” He does not say Fred. When using Victoria, she says millibars instead of megabytes.

I am not sure if these are bugs or simply the programmers are trying to give the voices human characteristics. If it’s a bug, why isn’t it consistent on all the voices?

Submitted by Jake on Thursday, September 15, 2016

This is the result of the text-to-speech voice you are using attempting to expand an abbreviation. Nuance voices, for example, do this. The reason is that it is not written as "4 minutes" but "4m". The typical use of the letter m following a number in English is meters, so that's what the Nuance voices do. They do this anywhere you find Nuance voices (Mac, iPhone, PC). I'd have to test, but I believe Fred may do this as well though Alex does not. This is a problem that has plagued we speech users, in one form or another, for more than twenty years ever since we started wanting our speech engines to be smarter. I just shrug it off. Like voice recognition, it won't be 100% perfect at guessing context any time soon.

Submitted by JeffB on Thursday, September 15, 2016

With the ability to fix these with the pronunciation dictionary is this really even a bug anymore?

Submitted by Jeff on Thursday, September 15, 2016

I know a pronunciation dictionary can be created for voices in the Voiceover section of Accessibility Settings, but can a dictionary be created that Ciri will use?

Personally, I wish the voices would not try to expand abbreviations. I actually do consider this a bug unless it's a configurable option as it is in Windows screen readers.

Submitted by JeffB on Thursday, September 15, 2016

I doubt it but the issue was with Voiceover I haven't had an issue with Siri pronouncing anything. Also the pronunciation dictionary works. Daniel says no with a period after as number so I now changed that to just be no and it works great! Also I doubt that this will be fixed as they gave us the ability to fix it ourselves.

Submitted by Geo MC on Monday, September 19, 2016

I have the same problem too. I appreciate there may be occasions where a voice could confuse minutes with metres, but surely with some tweaking the voice could be taught that when the m is followed by the word 'ago', then it should be read as minutes. I've tried altering this in the dictionary, with no success. I can only think that since it's pre-programmed, it can't be changed by the user.