For 32 years a human named Andy Chanley has been a radio announcer (now working afternoon’s at Southern California’s 88.5 KCSN), Reuters reports. But now….
“I may be a robot, but I still love to rock,” says the robot DJ named ANDY, derived from Artificial Neural Disk-JockeY, in Chanley’s voice, during a demonstration for Reuters where the voice was hard to distinguish from a human disc jockey.
Our phones, speakers and rice cookers have been talking to us for years, but their voices have been robotic. Seattle-based AI startup WellSaid Labs says it has finessed the technology to create over 50 real human voice avatars like ANDY so far, where the producer just needs to type in text to create the narration….
Martín Ramírez, head of growth at WellSaid, said once the voice avatars are created, WellSaid manages the commercial agreements according to the voice owner’s requests. WellSaid voice avatars are doing more than DJ work. They are used in corporate training material or even to read audiobooks, said Ramirez.
The article points out that while (human) announcer Andy Chanley was recording his voice, he discovered he has Stage 2 lymphoma. While he eventually recovered, Chanley liked knowing that there was also another way that the sound of his voice could still be supporting his family — and that his grandchildren could hear the sound of his voice.