The text to speech AI capability has improved steadily for a number of years and with the new publisher tool, your ebooks could soon become audiobooks. Publishers in the UK and U.S.A. will have access to automatically generated narrators so that any book can be heard.

This will result in a huge expansion of available listening for people who prefer to listen, are time poor and listen on the move or have disabilities resulting in them needing audio transcription.

This opens the world of stories far wider as — generally speaking — only blockbuster titles get the Audiobook treatment. They also cost a significant amount of money, even in comparison to a printed book, so the cost reduction for audio access is also a bonus. How widely spread this will become is down to the publishers though as they need to use Google’s publisher tool.

The aforementioned publisher tool to create auto-narrated audiobooks is currently in beta and will be rolling out to publishers early next year.