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Sounds real: $3,5 million for synthesized speech 🎤

Sonantic implements AI in order to imitate human voice. The founder began with teaching autistic children. Now thanks to her startup, gaming studios save hundreds of hours on voiceover.

Background
Zeena Qureshi is the founder of Sonantic. In 2010, one of Zeena’s family members was diagnosed with autism. She started to study methods used for behavior and speech correction — ABA and speech therapies. She realized her commitment to help others and started to teach non-verbal autistic kids to speak.

Sacred project
Later, Qureshi launched a platform for mapping religions and ideologies. The aim was to struggle with extremism cause many religious extracts are taken out of context. The platform was predicated on artificial intelligence. It collected interpretations and comments devoted to sacred Islamic texts.

Cinema contribution
In 2018, Zeena got acquainted with John Flynn, who worked for the cinema industry for a while. He was interested in the technology of speech synthesizing and processing. Zeena combined her knowledge about speech structure and Flynn’s cinematographic experience which turned into Sonantic.

First inventions
The company developed a neural network that imitated human voice. It sounded natural with the help of timber regulation, breathing effect, and the main thing — emotion imitation.

In 2020, the startup presented the first algorithm version that could cry and breathe heavily. In 2021, they went deeper: Sonantic demonstrated how AI can reproduce anger.

How much does the voice cost?
Voice is a huge market opportunity. In 2020, the company attracted €2,3 million investments. By 2021, Sonantic has gained $3,5 million investments from Twitch, Entrepreneur First, and Horizons Venture.

Audio platform Sonantic is used by large cinema studios and companies, like game developers. The audio editor includes different voice models. They are created through the recording of professional actors’ voices. Customers can pick voice models from a large base or develop a new voice from scratch.

Ethical issue
Zeena assures that technologies are developing much faster the law and ethical norms. Therefore, the company strives to understand their actors, to see what they feel, and explore the possibilities properly. Any technology can be used both for good and for evil. That is why, before providing the access to voices, Sonantic verifies all the studios they work with and keeps the algorithm private.

How would you integrate an artificial voice? Text in the chat 💬


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