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How to change the language and voice used in Text-to-speech (TTS) and the TalkBack screen reader in Android 11

How to change the language and voice used in Text-to-speech (TTS) and the TalkBack screen reader in Android 11

To find out more about customising Text-to-speech to make it easier to hear or understand, see How to change the text-to-speech (TTS) settings for screen readers for Android 11.  

Short guide:

  1. Tap the Settings icon  to open the Settings app. Scroll down and tap Accessibility.
  2. Scroll down to the Screen readers section and tap Text-to-speech output.
  3. On the Text-to-speech output screen, tap Language. Choose a language from the available options.
  4. Many of the languages can use different male and female voices.  To use a voice other than the default, tap the Settings icon next to Preferred engine.
  5. Tap Install voice data and select the language you wish to use. You may have to download a language pack before you can proceed.
  6. If you have already enabled TalkBack or Select to Speak you will see a small Play button next to each voice. Tap the Play button to hear a sample, or tap the button next to the voice to use it.
  7. If you haven’t enabled TalkBack or Select to Speak, tap a voice to hear a sound sample. Text-to-speech will now use this voice unless you choose another one.

Before and after

Text-to-speech with the System language enabled and with French enabled

This section takes you step-by-step through changing the language and voice used in Google text-to-speech (TTS) and the TalkBack screen reader in Android 11, complete with pictures of the screen to help.

Find the Accessibility settings

1. Tap the Settings icon to launch the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Accessibility.

Tap Settings then scroll down and tap Accessibility

Tap Text-to-speech output

2. Scroll down to the Screen readers section and tap Text-to-speech output.

Scroll down to the Screen readers section and tap Text-to-speech output.

Change the language

3. On the Text-to-speech output screen, tap Language. Choose from one of the available options.

Tap language, then tap one of the available languages

Pick a different voice

4. Many of the languages can use different male and female voices.  To use a voice other than the default, tap the Settings icon next to Preferred engine.

Tap the Settings icon next to Preferred engine

Choose a language pack

5. Tap Install voice data, then select the language you wish to use, in our example we are using English (United Kingdom). At this point you may have to download a language pack before you can proceed to the next step.

Tap Install voice data then select a language

Preview your voice

6. If you have already enabled TalkBack or Select to Speak you will see a small Play button next to each voice. Tap it to hear a sample of the voice in action. Tap the round button next to the voice to use it with Text-to-speech.

Tap the Play button to preview the voice and the small round radio button to select it

Choose a new voice

7. If you haven’t enabled TalkBack or Select to Speak, just tap a voice to hear a sound sample. Text-to-speech will now use this voice unless you choose another one.

Tap a voice to hear a sound sample and select it

Note: we have written these instructions for devices running the standard version of the Android operating system. You may find some minor presentation differences if the manufacturer has customised the theme.

Created on: September-14-2021

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