Apple launches Apple Books digital narration, enabling AI-narrated audiobooks

With the recent launch of Apple Books digital narration, publishers now have a new method for automatically creating excellent AI-narrated audiobooks from an ebook file.

Apple Books digital narration

Apple Books digital narration launched as a way to empower indie authors and small publishers

Apple initially announced Apple Books digital narration in December. The functionality aims to make “the creation of audiobooks more accessible to all,”, especially for indie authors and small publishers.

More and more book lovers are listening to audiobooks, yet only a fraction of books are converted to audio — leaving millions of titles unheard. Many authors — especially independent authors and those associated with small publishers — aren’t able to create audiobooks due to the cost and complexity of production. Apple Books digital narration makes the creation of audiobooks more accessible to all, helping you meet the growing demand by making more books available for listeners to enjoy.

To create high-quality audiobooks from an ebook file, Apple Books digital narration combines cutting-edge speech synthesis technology with significant work by teams of linguists, quality control experts, and audio engineers.

Apple has long been on the forefront of innovative speech technology, and has now adapted it for long-form reading, working alongside publishers, authors, and narrators.

Digitally narrated titles are a valuable complement to professionally narrated audiobooks, and will help bring audio to as many books and as many people as possible. Apple Books remains committed to celebrating and showcasing the magic of human narration and will continue to grow the human-narrated audiobook catalog.

Apple Books digital narration

In the future, Apple Books will support AI voices for various genres. As of right now, the capability is currently only accessible for a small number of genres. Apple states that the creation and approval of an AI-narrated audiobook can take up to one month, indicating that there is some manual review involved. Along with the AI-narrated version, publishers are free to sell a conventional, human-narrated audiobook.

The first digitally narrated audiobooks are available in Apple Books now. These audiobooks are shown as “Narrated by Apple Books” in the store.

About the Author

Asma is an editor at iThinkDifferent with a strong focus on social media, Apple news, streaming services, guides, mobile gaming, app reviews, and more. When not blogging, Asma loves to play with her cat, draw, and binge on Netflix shows.