Will AI voices replace real voice overs?

In this modern age, AI is burrowing its way into various career paths, and putting many people out of a job.

AI is capable of performing calculations and using logic to solve problems, without tiring out and without facing the same issues that a human workforce would face.

The question that lies for this article’s topic: Will AI voices replace real voice overs? Let’s explore that further in this post.

The rise of realistic AI voices

AI voices have been a thing ever since the 1950’s when the first speech recognition systems were put together. We’ve all heard the “robotic voices” that you hear from an automated machine, google translate and IVRs on phone calls.

Now, about 70 years after the first AI voice, we now have realistic AI voices that sound almost indistinguishable from their human counterparts.

Anything from AI-ified celebrity voices to AI rendered cartoon characters and even singers – yes you heard that right, singers. There are now AI versions of your favourite artists, giving almost uncanny vocal performances like something straight out of a black mirror episode.

With the current developments, it seems like AI voices are well on their way to competing with human voices, for now there’s still a hint of robot-like vibes from them, but give them time.

How AI is used in voice acting

Though AI voices aren’t yet dominating, they are still being used for some purposes. More commonly known, AI voices are most popularly used for voicemail greetings, as well as interactive voice response systems. Not only that, but AI is also in use for YouTube and social media video voice overs for those who are microphone-shy.

As it stands, high quality AI voices are not of easy access to the public, unless you pay a premium for that, which isn’t affordable for everybody. So for now we don’t have to worry about AI voices taking over completely, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t anticipate it, as it may be a lot closer than we think.

The future of AI voices

With recent developments and AI voices starting to compete with human voices, the future when regarding AI will be focused on production of high quality computer generated voices that sound as natural as natural can be.

AI versions of your favourite celebrity voices, such as Morgan Freeman for instance, will also be something we see a lot more of, with the same being said about famous singers and rappers, where they’d licence their voice for use in commercials, whether speaking or singing.

It wouldn’t be too long a wait before we see AI voices starring in narrations of adverts, or even audiobooks once they perfect the natural husk of a human voice. Although it is likely to happen in the foreseeable future, thankfully for the voiceover world we are not there yet.

The remaining demand for human voices

It’s undeniable that there is still a big demand for human voices, whether it’s because humans don’t yet trust AI to do the job properly, or because we genuinely crave the sound of a human voice over a more unnatural AI voice.

Human voices will still be the go-to option, but realistically, AI voices will start to saturate the market a bit more in the coming years, simply due to the rate in which they’re improving by the day.

So to answer the original question: will AI voices replace human voices? The truth is, we don’t actually know yet. As it stands, AI voices aren’t yet at the level of human voices, but they are getting rather close, and better by the day.

The wisest conclusion to draw from this is that only time will tell; that being said, it may be wise for full time voice overs to consider the above facts and prepare for any outcome for the future. Voice overs as a profession does seem safe, for now…


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