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Old 07-16-2021, 05:29 PM   #16
JSWolf
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ok but all on IOS devices or are their other criteria.
e.g. on a standard i-phone, will alexa read your kindle books through the i-phone headphones/speaker ? or does it need to be a recent model....
That depends on when Amazon added the ability to read Kindle eBooks and what the minimum version of iOS that version of Amazon Alexa requires.
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Old 07-21-2021, 10:06 PM   #17
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If you're looking for text to speech instead of an audiobook player, I suggest a app called VoiceDream. I'm not sure about drm"ed books because I use bookshare with this app but you can buy many voices which gives you lots of listening options. I think there is an android version as well as ios and if you're not in a hurry it goes on sale for half price once or twice a year.

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Old 07-22-2021, 01:20 AM   #18
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i wanted the convenience and the almost-human quality of Alexa doing the reading
i got it to work " on this device" on my phone when I re-tried, but getting it to work on an alexa enabled Sonos is flaky
you have to use the alexa app, not the audible app, in order to choose a kindle book to be read.
Sonos is easily confused, esp. if it is holding a link to audible, still , as the " current book".
so, mostly - the sonos speaker just says " something went wrong", then shuts up.

alexa on sonos for actual audible books works ok, using the audible app.

i do have epub text to speech e.g. in moon reader, but it does not sound human - but alexa does. I got one working then asked the wife if she was hearing a machine or a person doing the reading . she said person.

alexa will only read books from amazon, there's no mechanism I can find to have her read anything else.
i do have lots of kindle books owned + I have Kindle unlimited for now, so it would be great if alexa could reliably read those, on amazon eco AND on sonos one. [ in different rooms]

i will check out the voicedream quality though - thanks for the suggestion
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Old 08-24-2021, 08:57 AM   #19
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With an Amazon Alexa, you can use bluetooth headphones.
Also with Alexa Amazon can record everything!
Issues of privacy and maybe even copyright.

I think Echo is a terrible solution. Does it work much when your internet fails? Or during a power cut? Or camping? Commuting or jogging.

Transcribe the MP3 /AAX etc to C90 tapes. Good enough for audio books. Less items than CD (90 min vs 74 min). Longer battery life than CD. Portable players with easy to use by feel buttons are still made (avoid ones with USB out for "digitising" as any 30 yo HiFi cassette plugged into line in on PC or stereo mic in on some tablets is better for old tapes to WAV, The USB is usually no use to put stuff ON the tapes).

Also tapes remember where you are when you stop in the middle of a chapter or put them in a different machine.

I'm putting audio books on cassette as well as Audible and SD cards. Handy for blind people (or partially due to cataracts or macular degeneration; a friend has both).

There is no doubt that phones with decent audio players don't have buttons, or at the most volume.

There are still some dedicated media players with buttons, but most seem about x4 overpriced and poor ergonomics.
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Old 08-24-2021, 09:10 AM   #20
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Text to speech is for when the audiobook doesn't exist. Ray Kurzweil first did this in the late 1970s for the blind with the groundbreaking OCR he developed. It's not much better nearly 50 years later.

Sadly while there are more natural voices its still hugely inferior to real audio books because there has been almost no progress since the late 1980s.

It's been available free on Windows since XP. For free on Android and Linux (and included for years). Probably on Mac OS and iOS free. I'd be really really surprised if Amazon's Echo or any paid 3rd part Text to Speech has little more than a nicer or different choice of "voices".

The PW4 and PW3 text to speech sounds a bit nicer than 2002 XP or the Kindle DXG, but it's no "smarter". Still no real parsing and little improved from 1980s Text to speech in terms of emotion, dialog vs spoken text and other parsing and meta quality features that a real human reader has.

Real Audio books are more or less worth it, if the title is available. Text to speech is for when there is no alternative.
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