How do I add voices to Web Reader?

Bookshare Web Reader reads using your device's built-in text-to-speech voice. Depending on what kind of device you have, please follow the steps below to change your device's default voice. In addition, you can enhance the Bookshare Web Reader reading experience by using a compatible extension such as Read&Write from TextHelp or Snap&Read from Don Johnston, both of which are available for the latest Chrome, Safari, and Edge browsers. Learn more about these reading tool extensions.

Windows PC

To change your computer's Text to Speech voice:

Windows 8 and older

  1. Open the start menu, then type "Text to Speech" into the search box. 
  2. Select the option to "Change text to speech settings." 
  3. From the voice drop down box select the voice you wish to use with the Web Reader. 

Windows 10

  1. Right-click on the Start Menu on the bottom left corner of your screen.
  2. Select Control Panel.
  3. Type "text to speech" in the search box on the top right corner of the window, then select "Change text to speech settings."
  4. Select your preferred voice from the Voice Selection drop-down menu, then select the Preview Voice button.
  5. Select the Apply button to save your changes.

If you're using Google Chrome, we recommend installing this high quality Text to Speech extension:

  1. Go to the Chrome Web Store and install "Chrome OS US English Female HQ." 
  2. Close all Chrome windows, then open Web Reader once more. 
  3. Open Settings within Web Reader, then select select "Chrome OS US English Female HQ" from the Voice drop-down menu. 

Mac

To change your computer's Text to Speech voice:

  1. Select the Apple icon on the top left corner of the screen and select "System Preferences." 
  2. Choose the Speech and Dictation option, and from the speech tab select the voice you wish to use.

If you're using Google Chrome, we recommend installing this high quality Text to Speech extension:

  1. Go to the Chrome Web Store and install "Chrome OS US English Female HQ." 
  2. Close all Chrome windows, then open Web Reader once more. 
  3. Open Settings within Web Reader, then select select "Chrome OS US English Female HQ" from the Voice drop-down menu. 

Chromebook

You can install a Text to Speech extension from the Chrome Web Store to change your voice. There are both free and paid extensions to enhance the Bookshare Web Reader voice on a Chromebook.

The free option is the Chrome OS US English Female HQ voice for Google Chrome. To install it:

1. Go to the Chrome Web Store, search for and install "Chrome OS US English Female HQ." 
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/chrome-os-us-english-fema/efdojdlmjknacnljjdedapanceanigkh 
2. Sign out, then sign back in to the Chromebook.

There are also excellent voices available for purchase (for $7.99 to $9.99) from Acapela that can be incorporated into Bookshare Web Reader on a Chromebook. To install them:

  1. Go to the Chrome Web Store and search for "Acapela TTS Engine"

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/acapela-tts-engine/hfpbgbaepoblbkbmpojjnpkeikgoadil

  1. Download this extension to your Chromebook.
  2. Select the Acapela icon in the top tool bar, then select “Options.”
  3. You can then test, purchase, and download your desired TTS voices on your Chromebook. (Tip: when sampling the different voices, enter a longer sentence into the box of text that is being read, so you can get a better idea of how each voice sounds.)
  4. Your purchased voices will be available in the Settings menu in Bookshare Web Reader (you may need to restart your Chromebook).

Mobile Devices (iOS, Android)

Web Reader isn't fully compatible with mobile devices yet; however screen reader users can use VoiceOver or TalkBack to listen to the book. If you're reading on a mobile device, we recommend using a mobile app instead.