TMCnet Feature
June 22, 2020

The Use of Text to MP3 Technology

Chances are that you have come across the text to MP3 or text to voice technology, without even realizing it.  With the advancement in technology, voice recreation, and programming, the automated voices that many are familiar with, are becoming a thing of the past.  While there are still the common and obvious uses of text to MP3 technology in basic IVR phone systems used by banks, department stores, and government offices, to ensure proper routing of phone calls; the technology is spreading to other industries with new and innovative uses.

The programming behind the text to MP3 technology is rather complex, but to simplify the process, a text to MP3 converter works by translating the basic text into a phonetic interpretation of the data, which is then converted to speech using small snippets of sounds, words, phrases, and sometimes, full sentences. Once the data has been converted to a voice file, users of the technology can change the voice quality or style, plus the speed of the playback, to make the words sound more authentic and “human”.

While this technology is used in a tremendous number of industries, it has really made a huge impact in the Education sector. 

There are many applications where the text to MP3 technology can assist in education.  For students with dyslexia, low reading levels, or certain processing disorders that make interpreting data from written sources challenging, text to MP3 technology is a true lifesaver. While students will certainly need to continue to develop reading and reading comprehension skills, text to MP3 allows students to keep up with their current curriculum even if their disability impacts reading skills.  In essence, these programs can level the playing field for students that otherwise would spend more time in the classroom developing reading skills, and less time actually learning the necessary material.

Another area where the text to MP3 offers educational benefits is with second language learners. Whether the student is an ESL student or an English speaking student studying in another language, this technology not only helps to improve the students grasp of the second language’s nuances in grammar, pronunciation, and sentence structure, it also assists in increasing overall comprehension of the information. Therefore, the technology not only comes in handy with students attempting to become proficient in a second language, but it also improves their ability to understand the material itself.

Due to the unforeseen Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020, many colleges and universities around the country, and the world, closed their campuses to students. Voice to MP3 programs has become incredibly helpful for online learners or students who are traditionally on campus but are having to adjust how and when they can study due to accessibility.  With advancements in the overall text to MP3 voice programs, full lectures can be converted to audio files so that students don’t have to be in class at a specific time, and can listen to lectures at their leisure.

Students can also use these programs on an individual level by inputting written data directly and creating a voice file of a written assignment or lesson plan.  Many of the text to MP3 programs use OCR technology (optical character recognition) which allows users to scan pages of data into a program, rather than type each word individually. This has expanded the way learners and traditional students at all grade levels complete lessons that traditionally required a large time commitment dedicated to reading materials.

Moving forward, we will continue to see text to MP3 programs impacting processes in nearly every industry worldwide, however, the largest impact of these programs arguably is and will continue to be in the education sector as students, teachers, and administrators continue to identify the benefits these programs offer to the student population.

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