Apple Introducing Gender Neutral Siri Voice To Address Stereotype
Siri gender-neutral voice will roll out with iOS 15.4 sometime in March.
Apple has released a new Siri voice feature available in beta testing in its recent update of iOS 15.4.
With the new voice, you won’t detect if the voice speaking is a male or female.
This was introduced as a solution for the criticism in the past around gender stereotypes.
Experts and observers had said that there was an unfair gender stereotype in the industry.
And that only female voices were used for voice assistants, and most of them have female names.
Voice assistants like Google assistant, Cortana, Alexa, Siri all sound female.
Although Apple has tried addressing some of the issues associated with these concerns in the past.
It released more diverse voices for its Siri feature.
Also, it removed the default setting of Siri to allow people to make their choice of voice.
With the new development, Apple is saying, ‘what if you don’t have to think about the voice gender?’
Also, ‘what if all you have to listen to is a neutral voice, not male or female.’
That’s Apple’s plan for introducing AI software.
Asides, introducing the new voice would be the fifth Siri voice coming from the company.
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More on Siri’s new voice by Apple and developer Steve Mosse
Speaking on the new voice, an Apple spokesman comments says this.
“We’re excited to introduce a new Siri voice for English speakers, giving users more options to choose a voice that speaks to them,”.
“Last year, we introduced two new voices and removed the set voice default as part of Apple’s long-standing commitment to developing products and services that better reflect the diversity of the world we live in.
Millions of people around the world rely on Siri every day to help get things done, so we work to make the experience feel as personalized as possible”.
According to Apple, users can now hear a voice without being able to differentiate if it is a man or woman.
But a person might decide to set their mind to one role, and they begin to misinterpret the feature.
Also, Apple noted that it was careful not to make the feature sound robotic.
But it has been able to program it into a natural human voice that doesn’t sound like a man or a woman.
It adds that a member of the LGBTQ+ community recorded the new voice.
An expert, Steve Mosse, decides to give more insight on the new release on a tweet thread.
He says that the new voice was introduced with the file name Quinn.
Quinn is a well known gender-neutral name that is used by both genders.
Therefore, this might be why the file name of the new voice is named Quinn.
Implication for you reading
If you are reading this and using an iOS device, you should update to the latest version, iOS 15.4.
Apple has good news waiting for you there.
Although there is no guarantee that everyone who updates to the latest iOS would be part of the testing.
However, if you did so and can access the new voice, share your experience with us in the comment section.
We would love to know more about the Siri gender-neutral voice.
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