By Eric Fail

2019-01-07 12:40:16 8 Comments

In iOS, it is possible to have the text read out loud using the built-in text-to-speech (TTS) while the individual words highlight as they are spoken.

Like in this gif:

tts in iOS, MacOS highlight content as spoken as iOS

(taken from this you video).

I am looking for a way to get MacOS's (10.11) built-in TTS to highlight individual words as they are spoken, as in iOS. This is extremely helpful for me when reading.

This Ask Different question get at the same issue, but it's slightly different as it's asking for a browser-based solution and I am primarily looking for native MacOS solution. Thanks.


@fsb 2019-01-07 12:52:22

You can try Dictator by Nosrac. It's available for free on GitHub. I'm not the developer or affiliated with the software. enter image description here

It has a feature called 'teleprompter mode' that highlights the words as they're spoken.

enter image description here

The code hasn't been updated in a few years and I haven't tried it myself so I can't speak for how well it works. I'm recommending it because it looks like it does what you want and it's free.

@Eric Fail 2019-01-07 13:12:15

Thank you for your answer. Unfortunately Dictator by Nosrac do not seem to be working under MacOS 10.11. I did hope to find a native solution, but maybe that's not possible. Thanks.

@fsb 2019-01-07 13:56:38

Yea, I wasn't entirely sure it work with your version but I thought it was worth a shot. I'm not aware of any native solution that does what you want.

@Eric Fail 2019-01-08 13:29:52

Any chance you would be willing to rewrite your answer into a comment? I understand if you want to keep it as an answer, but I wanted to ask respectfully as it is my experience that questions unaccepted gets less attention. Thanks.

@fsb 2019-01-08 13:52:20

Thanks for the suggestion, @EricFail. While this answer might not address your specific situation, and therefore not be accepted, it might help others who have the same issue. I've seen hundreds of unaccepted answers get comments from others who said it did help. Based on that, I'll leave the answer alone (along with your comments as to why it wasn't accepted).

@Monomeeth 2019-01-12 07:04:53

Upvote from me as it'll definitely help some users. :)

@Wowfunhappy 2019-01-17 00:39:09

This should absolutely be and remain a full answer.

@Eric Fail 2019-01-20 18:49:49

@Monomeeth and Wowfunhappy thank you for chiming in on this. I wonder if you have tried the software in question and if so under what MacOS? As mentioned above Dictator by Nosrac do not seem to be working under MacOS 10.11. Thanks.

@Monomeeth 2019-01-22 21:31:39

@EricFail Thanks for your feedback. I have no doubt your question will appeal to users across multiple generations of Mac OS X / macOS, so the reason for my upvote is that I feel this answer will be useful for some of those users, although I appreciate at this stage it'll be limited to those on older versions of macOS.

@Matt Sephton 2019-01-22 18:25:11

VoiceOver on macOS can do this.

  1. Use VoiceOver to activate move highlight cursor by word
  2. Activate VoiceOver with Cmd+F5
  3. Click on the text you want to read
  4. Press Control+Alt+A to "read all"

VoiceOver Utility - Visuals - move highlight by word

How well it works will vary by application and how well they support VoiceOver.

These animations were recorded on 10.13.6 High Sierra, but VoiceOver has been around since 10.4 Tiger - so you should be OK in 10.11 El Capitan.

Pages - works well

enter image description here

FSNotes - works well

enter image description here

Safari - depends on how the page is built

enter image description here

@Eric Fail 2019-02-12 14:10:37

Thank you for your response! I wasn't aware of the VoiceOver It it works, but as you also point out it vary by application how how well VoiceOver works. I will keep the question open for a tidbit longer to see if anything else show up. Thanks again!

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