HomePodSource: iMore

What you need to know

  • Siri's voice can currently be changed between male and female.
  • A new report says we might soon be able to pick a different voice altogether.
  • "Hey, Picard. Engage!"

Apple is working on adding support for custom voice synthesizers to iOS, according to a new MacRumors report. A new developer framework named VoiceProvider is said to be in the works, with an eye on iOS 14 as a potential release window.

It's thought that the new synthesizer would be bundled inside apps, likely in a similar way to how Apple Watch apps used to be handled. Support for HomePod would also be likely, although as-yet unconfirmed.

Voice synthesizer extensions would be bundled with apps from the App Store, and then could be offered to the system to replace the default speech voice, which could be important for languages and dialects that Apple does not support. This could potentially extend to an API for the HomePod, although this is not for certain.

This could theoretically allow developers to offer other voices, giving us the option to replace the standard Siri voice on our devices. Could that open the door to Captain Kirk or Mr. T? Maybe, but with this framework reportedly in the very early stages of development, we might have to wait longer than iOS 14 to take it for a spin.