Top 5 Best Text to Speech Chrome Extensions

We have listed the five best Text to Speech Software extensions based on accessibility, features, and pricing to help you choose the best. Here's what we explored.
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Best Text to Speech Chrome Extensions

Chrome extensions are a great way to make your life easier and more comfortable. They can be installed as a browser add-on and are designed to boost your productivity, enhance your workflow, and enrich as well as customize your user experience. Chrome extensions are handy tools that help you perform a particular task within a minimal time and with less effort. Today, millions of bespoke chrome extensions eliminate the need to use traditional apps or separate software to perform tasks quickly, and one such extension is text to speech.  

Have you ever been interrupted while reading a blog post or an article and lost track of the information? Or come across an article with an intriguing subject matter but didn't have time to read it? This happens more often than you can imagine, and users find themselves spending more time finding information than actually reading it. This is where text to speech chrome extensions play their part. 

Text to speech chrome extensions allow users to listen to text while doing other activities, such as filling in a spreadsheet, formatting a document, or performing any general task. They also offer a great benefit for people with disabilities. TTS chrome extensions make web browsers accessible for people with visual and learning difficulties, enabling them to read articles, learning modules, emails, and web pages, among others, without the help of anyone, among other perks. It is also a very handy tool for students who struggle with reading. A text to speech apps chrome extensions helps them focus on comprehension, improve fluency and endurance, and identify and correct errors more easily.

Before we mention the most useful text to speech chrome extensions, let us look at the 'must-have' features of a TTS chrome extension. 

Key features a text to speech chrome extension must have

TTS chrome extensions can be used for multiple purposes in webpages and applications like Google Docs, TXT files, PowerPoint presentations, and more. But, before we can take advantage of what these extensions have to offer, you must know what basic functionalities a chrome extension must exhibit. Here is a list of the key features:

  • It should be easy to use and deliver a great user experience,
  • Work well with web pages, PDF documents, Docx files, and other document formats,
  • Provide a natural-sounding output and not monotonous or robotic-sounding audio,
  • Works across all browsers, 
  • Function effectively on Android and iOS devices,
  • Offers customizable voices
  • And lastly, it supports multiple languages and accents

Best text to speech extensions for Google Chrome

Given the fact that there are numerous text to speech chrome extensions available in the market,  it can get challenging to choose the right one for you. You must shift through each extension's strengths, weaknesses, and usability. For example, a simple text to speech functionality won't work for you if you want to read books or access web pages in multiple languages. This is why we have listed the best text to speech chrome extensions based on accessibility, features, and pricing to help you choose the best. 

Read Aloud

Read Aloud's text to speech app chrome extension enables users to read documents and web pages aloud with high-quality voices. It comes with several options to change the speed and pitch of voices, as well as increase the volume of the reading. It has shortcut keys for pause, play, fast-forward, and rewind text translation. 

Read Aloud can read texts in different formats, such as PDFs, e-books, Google Play Books, and Amazon Kindle, among others. Moreover, the extension enables users to access premium voices such as Amazon Polly, Google Wavenet, and IBM Watson by logging in and making an additional in-app purchase.

Top features

  • Access to voices in over 40 languages
  • Offers text highlighting 
  • Provides multiple voice options to choose from
  • Supports voice customizations
  • Works well with most websites like blogs, news, text, and eBooks, and most university course material

Pros

  • Supports keyboard shortcuts
  • Open source
  • Easy to use
  • Works offline
  • Registration is not required for basic usage

Cons

  • The free version does not offer realistic voices 
  • No option to scan books or upload documents and PDFs.
  • Some voices sound robotic

Natural Reader

Natural Readers chrome extension serves as a powerful tool for the visually impaired people, dyslexic, and individuals who find it difficult to read or learn without assistive technology. It can convert any type of relevant text files, including PDF, Docs, eBooks, and emails. Natural Readers also has an immersive reader mode that lets users read without any distractions. For those with dyslexia, this mode even supports dyslexic fonts to make reading easier.

Natural Reader's extension has four tabs: one for adjusting the voice and the playback speed, the second for changing settings, the third for saving the progress to mobile, and the final one for listening to PDFs or uploaded texts.

Top features

  • Supports voices in over 16 languages
  • Has an OCR function that can read text from images and pdf files
  • Enables voice customizations like adjusting reading speed and changing the voice 
  • Users can easily switch from desktop to mobile app without losing track of the portion that has been read
  • Supports the use of keyboard shortcuts. For example,  Alt + R instructs Natural Reader to start reading text.
  • Works offline

Pros

  • User-friendly functions and UI
  • Supports an immersive reading mode

Cons

  • Many features require a premium version
  • Not open source

Pricing plans

  • Personal: $ 99.50 one-time payment
  • Professional: $129.50 one-time payment
  • Ultimate: $ 199.50 one-time payment

Speechify

Speechify's chrome extension is fully customizable with new, additional settings that can be used to adjust the speed of speech synthesis, volume, pitch, and more. The text to speech tool speaks aloud any text on a web page, and it does so in a very natural, conversational tone and supports different languages. After plugging in Speechify's chrome extension, users can click the pinned icon to get a floating control bar, allowing them to read out loud whatever they need. Speechify also lets users upload PDFs and hit play to listen to documents while multitasking.

Top features

  • Voice customizations
  • Enables users to save files to listen from their desktop or mobile app without losing track of the text
  • Supports an OCR functionality that enables users to extract texts from images, pdfs, and eBooks
  • High-quality voices in 60+ languages

Pros

  • Web-based API
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Mac and PC compatible 

Cons

  • Expensive 
  • Free version has limited use

Pricing

  •  $139 per year

Readme

Readme is another text to speech extension with an ace up its sleeve. Over and above the common features, Readme has a unique ‘summary' function. This function uses ChatGPT to quickly go through a website’s content and gives you its main talking points in a matter of seconds. 

Top Features

  • Website Summary Function
  • Option to convert selected passages to speech 
  • You can alter the speed and volume of the voice and skip forward or backward.

Pros

  • Multi-language support
  • User-friendly interface
  • Works of PDF and other eBook formats

Cons

  • Random glitches when converting text to speech.

Pricing Plans

  • It’s a free text to speech Chrome extension.

Talkie

Talkie is a free text to speech software with a chrome extension that supports different languages and enables users read aloud websites, PDFs, and email, helping overcome language barriers. To make Talkie read text, users simply have to select the text, right-click on it, and choose 'Talkie' from the context menu. The software will automatically detect the languages, select a voice, and read the text out loud. Most importantly, with Talkie's text to speech extension, new voices, languages, ​​and dialects can be downloaded for free on your operating system, for example, from Microsoft, Google play store, and Apple. 

Top features

  • Support around 40 languages 
  • Accessible on both Android and iOS devices
  • Available as a plugin for websites built on WordPress

Pros

  • Open source
  • Easy to use
  • No fixed price; follows a pay-what-you-want subscription
  • Supports keyboard controls
  • Works offline
  • Unlimited word count
  • No registration required

Cons

  • Not available for Windows
  • Not suitable for commercial usage on a large scale
  • No text highlighting

Snap&Read

Snap&Read's simple text to speech chrome extension runs as a floating toolbar over any open desktop or laptop application. Any user-selected words, phrases, or paragraphs, including Microsoft Word documents, PDF image or text, or a software dialogue box, can be read aloud using this extension.

Top features

  • With Snap&Read's dynamic text leveling, users can adjust the readability of text without changing its meaning
  • Supports OCR screenshot reading which also translates text into your native language
  • Text  highlighting 
  • Other than webpages, Docs, and PDFs, Snap&Read also reads text from images and scanned documents using OCR

Pros

  • Convert text files to speech in other languages ​​and adjust the readability of the text in real-time
  • Users can remove distractions and change the spacing and number of words per line, resulting in a better reading experience 

Pricing

  • $4 per month

Capti Voice

For starters, Capti Voice text reader extension has been developed with the help of the Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Health. 

The tool also serves as a text to speech literacy tool designed to convert text to audio for a more accessible reading experience for its users. Currently, Capti Voice is being used in both K-12 and higher education settings. With its ability to read text to speech online as well as offline (through Capti Voice’s standalone desktop app), Capti works seamlessly across platforms and devices. 

Top Features

  • Support for various disabilities such as vision loss and dyslexia.
  • Save web pages to Capti to read later on the computer, iPhone, or iPad.

Pros

  • Choose from premium quality voices in 26+ languages.
  • See words being highlighted as they are being read.

Cons

  • Requires registration to use.

Pricing Plans

Free text to speech Chrome extension along with in-app purchase to unlock additional features. 

Real-Life Applications of TTS Chrome Extension

In an era where we have become increasingly dependent on online content, TTS Chrome extensions are coming into their own and offer a host of benefits. Let’s see how the best text to speech Chrome extensions make a difference in these scenarios.

Accessibility for Visually Impaired Individuals

Consuming any online content can range from difficult to impossible for the visually impaired. TTS Chrome extensions, with their amazing AI text to speech technology, act as a gateway to access online content. These text to audio converters enable visually impaired individuals to consume content without having to rely on anyone. 

Multitasking

To say that we lead busy lives today is an understatement, and multitasking, which was once just a buzzword, is now second nature for most.

TTS Chrome extensions give everyone the ability, especially proficient multitaskers, to consume, hear, and enjoy some of their favorite content, in the form of podcasts or audiobooks while doing other menial tasks such as cooking or cleaning. 

Proofreading and Editing

A third application of TTS Chrome extensions is its ability to help improve one’s editing and proofreading efficiently. Typoglycemia, a phenomenon where our brains can read misspelled words correctly, can hamper one’s accuracy when editing.

That said, by reading the written text aloud, these text to voice generators can help users identify errors in grammar, spelling, and punctuation with a much higher degree of accuracy. 

Assisting those with Dyslexia

Dyslexia can pose significant challenges in reading and comprehension. These AI text to speech Chrome extensions can be a boon for individuals with dyslexia by providing them with an alternate medium for consuming information. 

How to Install a Text to Speech Chrome Extension

There are multiple ways to install a TTS Chrome extension on your browser. You could either go directly to the webpages of the various Chrome extensions linked in this blog and install them from there.

Alternatively, you could: 

  1. Open your Google Chrome browser and search for the Chrome Web Store. 
  2. Once there, you can search for “text to speech” or “TTS” in the “Search Extensions” search bar located on the top left-hand corner of the screen. 
  3. Browse the list of available extensions and click on what you feel is the best text to speech Chrome extension for your specific needs. 
  4. You will be guided to the dedicated page of the Chrome extension that will contain detailed information about the extension along with its privacy policy. There is also a section where you can read the reviews for the extensions. 
  5. If satisfied, just click on the blue “Add to Chrome” button on the top right-hand corner of the screen, and you are done. 

After the installation is complete, you should see the extension icon at the top right corner of the Chrome browser, adjacent to the address bar. 

Why consider Murf Text to Speech over other TTS Extensions?

While multiple text to speech software out there support chrome extensions, Murf Studio stands out despite not having a chrome extension because of its feature-laden platform and natural-sounding voices. 

Realistic voices

Murf's AI voices are 100 percent natural sounding. In fact, they can mimic the nuances and subtleties of the human voice in speech. Murf currently supports over 120+ AI voices in 20+ different languages across accents, age, gender, and styles. Users can further enhance the quality of Murf's realistic text to speech voices by adjusting the pitch, emphasis, pause, and pronunciation and replicating as many desired vocal attributes as possible in their content. 

Downloadable voiceover

Murf allows you to download your final voiceover audio file or video in multiple formats. Audio can be downloaded as an mp3, FLAC file, or in WAV format, whereas the voice over video can be downloaded in mp4 and MOV file formats. 

Voice manipulation

With Murf, users can entirely change the natural sounding voice of an existing voiceover from a male voice to a female voice and vice versa. Furthermore, with Murf's AI voice changer, you can convert recorded audio files into an editable script and swap it with a professional voice. 

Frequently Asked Questions


Which is the best text to speech chrome extension?

Some of the best text to speech chrome extensions include but are not limited to Natural Reader, Read Aloud, Talkie, Speechify, Voice dream reader, and Snap&Read. What makes these five built-in web browser stand out is their features, natural voice, accessibility, and ability to work with web applications, Google Docs, Docx, PDFs, HTML files, and other text file formats.

Is there any free text to speech chrome extension?

Talkie supports an entirely free text to speech chrome extension. Other extensions like Natural Reader, Read Aloud, Speechify, Voice dream reader and Snap&Read have free versions and premium version.

How do I use text to speech on Chrome?

If you have a TTS Chrome extension added to your browser, you may only have to click on the extension’s icon, and it will start reading text aloud.  In some instances, depending on the extension installed, you may have to select the text you want to be read aloud and then click on the extension's icon.

How do you get Chrome to read text out loud?

To get Chrome to read text out loud, you need to install a text to speech extension from the Chrome Web Store. Then, you can click on the extension icon and select the text you want to read.

Read more about the best text to speech software chrome extensions, best free voice changers, and best voice over software available online and their advantages.

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