A New iPad App, Guide, Has Created Virtual Personalities to Read Your Blogs


A new app, Guide, uses text-to-speech technology to turn blogs into listenable, watchable avatar anchors, according to Tubefilter. The avatars range from golden retriever puppies to Asian female correspondents, and adds a whole extra level of disruption for journalists. Although frankly, the sooner CNN gets disrupted, the better.

If you’re under the age of 30, I’m going to take a wild guess that you don’t watch much morning TV news — you have your go-to list of blogs, online newspapers and general Internet riff-raff. Personally, I always find there’s about 50% too much written content to consume in a sitting; as Matt Yglesias said, this is the Golden Age of Journalism. But with Guide, users can listen to this content while going about their daily lives — I’m pretty sure you can’t cook while reading a longform blog post.

We’ve seen text-to-speech technology in numerous iterations before; Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures regularly uses VoiceBunny in his blog posts. But the Miami-based Guide seems to be in a league of its own with the integration of virtual newsrooms and customized anchors. The app was released on Monday and hit the No.1 spot for News iPad apps yesterday, according to The Miami Herald.

Tubefilter pointed out that the really entertaining Guide newscasts will come when we can cut-and-paste different voices to different bodies. My perfect news anchor would be Allison Williams (Brian Williams’ daughter…duh), with the voice of Seth Rogen.

Check out the demo below: