Apple is rolling out two new updates to Siri in the iOS 14.5 beta. First, Siri will get two new voices to choose from, and second, Siri will no longer default to a particular male or female voice when being set up for the first time.
Two new voices
The new voices are based on talent recordings that have processed through Apple’s Neural text to speech engine. This enables the voices to have smoother transitions between phrases and have a better, more organic flow during speech. The two new voices will be prioritized for English-first users.
"This is a continuation of Apple’s long-standing commitment to diversity and inclusion, and products and services that are designed to better reflect the diversity of the world we live in," Apple said in a statement regarding the announcement.
Here’s a recording of Siri’s new lineup of American voices in iOS 14.5. Voices 1 and 4 are the existing ones, voices 2 and 3 are the new ones. pic.twitter.com/6emei4B3Z9— John Gruber (@gruber) April 1, 2021
No more default voice
As mentioned above, Siri will no longer default to a particular male or female voice when being set up for the first time. In most countries, Siri defaults to a female voice while in some countries, Siri defaults to a male voice.
Users will be given the choice to choose during the initial setup, thus making it easier for them to sort out their preferences.
These two features are being currently tested in iOS 14.5 beta and are available to all program participants.