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The Dutch voices represent a new milestone for young Dutch users, especially for those who rely on AAC. For the first time ever, communication and speech impaired Dutch children will have the possibility to express their thoughts, desires and needs with a voice that they like. For many children this will be a life-changing opportunity.
For decades, Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) solutions have given a voice to children who cannot speak. Until recently, children with communication difficulties only had access to adult text to speech voices to relay their thoughts, needs and desires.
In 2012, we proudly unveiled with AssistiveWare the world’s first genuine, natural-sounding children’s voices, in British English, providing a voice to over 74,000 children and teens in England who cannot speak for themselves. We then started to develop children’s voices in other languages.
Acapela Group is the only voice specialist worldwide to offer users a rich repertoire of 23 children’s voices which are truly lifelike.
The Dutch children’s voices are joining a cheerful band of voices that already enable young users around the world to speak – in English (British, American, Australian), French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Swedish and bilingual American English/North American Spanish.
“AssistiveWare has been our partner since the inception of the children voices. Together we have contributed to change the daily lives of children and their families that are using Acapela voices with AssistiveWare’s award-winning solutions. Over 20 voices in different languages are already available, and we look forward to keep continuing offering voices for kids all over the world,” says Nicolas Mazars, Business Unit manager of Acapela Inclusive.
All our children’s voices have specific voice smileys that ensure a truly lifelike, spontaneous and lively audio result. Here are some samples of voice smileys used by Merel and Thijs: “Ehmm. Hallo! Alles ok? Fantastisch! Super! Pff! Moederskindje! Doe normaal! Taadaah!” … There is also laughter, swallowing, specific sounds for a cat or a dog, a monkey, bee, horse, train, sirens, etc.