Latest Tasker beta lets you use Google’s natural-sounding WaveNet voices for Text to Speech
Tasker is one of the best Android apps out there, especially for the mobile phone enthusiast. You can automate many different aspects of your smartphone, even just simple things like switching on your Wi-Fi once you get home. The app has been used for more advanced things as well, such as removing the “App is running in the background” notification that was added in Android Oreo. Now, it’s getting even better, as the latest beta of Tasker allows you to use Google’s brand new natural-sounding WaveNet voices for Text to Speech alerts.
These voices are all using Google’s new WaveNet Text to Speech algorithm, something that the company has been working on for quite a while now. It’s been used in Google Assistant since the end of 2017, though applications have been slow to take up support. The speech is incredibly realistic and any app developer can make use of it. WaveNet doesn’t just support English either – Japanese, German, Portuguese, Brazilian Portuguese, and 9 other languages are all supported. It doesn’t work right out of the box, as you’ll need to apply for an API key from Google to enable your Google account to use WaveNet’s voices. You can technically be charged for the pleasure of it as well, as, after 1 million characters generated with WaveNet’s voices, you’ll be charged $16 a month for every million thereafter.
It’s a cool feature to enable and it’s easy to do, but the fear of getting charged may be enough to prevent some from signing up. A hard limit of 1 million characters is quite a lot, but it can add up quickly if you find yourself using Tasker for a lot of speech to text related things. Using regular Google-supplied voices (non-WaveNet) will only charge you after 4 million voices, so that may be an option as well.