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Apple showcases two new accessibility features in iOS 17 through an emotional short film titled “Lost Voice

Apple has unveiled a poignant short film called “Lost Voice” just ahead of the International Day for People with Disabilities on December 3, showcasing the innovative accessibility features, Personal Voice and Live Speech, introduced in iOS 17. The film tells the touching story of a young girl and her pink, floppy-eared companion on a quest to find his lost voice. The narrative is uniquely conveyed using the iOS 17 Personal Voice feature, generated on an iPhone. The film, directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Taika Waititi, adds authenticity by featuring Dr. Tristram Ingham, an advocate for disability and a user of the Personal Voice feature, as the narrator.

The iOS 17 features, Personal Voice and Live Speech, were introduced at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in June 2023. Personal Voice captures and replicates a user’s voice using on-device machine learning, while Live Speech enables users to type and have their words spoken in real-time conversations, phone calls, FaceTime, and assistive communication apps. These features offer a valuable means of communication, particularly for individuals with conditions like ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) who may face the risk of speech loss. The features empower users to maintain authentic communication through their Apple devices.

The setup process for these accessibility features is user-friendly. To create a Personal Voice, users can navigate to Settings > Accessibility, select Speech, and choose the option to “Create a Personal Voice.” Users then record approximately 150 phrases, a process that takes around 15 minutes. Apple’s machine learning algorithms analyze these phrases securely on the device to create the user’s unique Personal Voice. Once created, users can enable the Live Speech feature, allowing them to type messages and have them spoken aloud by their Apple devices.




Apple's new short film 'The Lost Voice' highlights accessibility features | Technology News - The Indian Express
Apple’s new short film ‘The Lost Voice’ highlights accessibility features

Live Speech also offers the option to add Favorite Phrases, allowing users to include commonly used phrases for quick access. Users can select their Personal Voice created earlier to further personalize their communication experience. Both features are part of Apple’s commitment to enhancing accessibility and ensuring that everyone, regardless of their abilities, can effectively use and benefit from Apple devices.

The film “Lost Voice” not only introduces these features to a broader audience but also highlights the real-world impact and emotional significance of such innovations in the lives of individuals facing speech challenges. Directed by Taika Waititi, known for his cinematic achievements in films like Jojo Rabbit and Thor: Love and Thunder, the film captures the essence of Apple’s dedication to accessibility and its impact on people’s lives.

Apple’s approach to accessibility reflects its broader mission of designing products and features that prioritize inclusivity, ensuring that technology is accessible and beneficial for everyone. The iOS 17 accessibility features showcased in “Lost Voice” exemplify Apple’s commitment to creating a more inclusive and empowering technological landscape.

In conclusion, Apple’s “Lost Voice” film serves as both an emotional narrative and an educational tool, showcasing the transformative impact of iOS 17 accessibility features and reinforcing Apple’s dedication to making technology accessible to all.


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