If you live in the U.K. and have an iPhone 4S, you may have wondered to yourself who the voice is behind Siri. Jon Briggs, a former technology journalist, has been the voice of Radio 2 and The Weakest Link. He has also been the voice for GPS devices created by Garmin, TomTom, Jaguar, Land Rover, Audi, and Porsche. Then he found out that he was the voice for Siri when he saw an ad on TV for the iPhone 4S.
His voice is known as “Daniel” and he recorded over 5,000 sentences in 3 weeks for a company called Scansoft. Scansoft merged with another company called Nuance, which works with Apple on Siri. Apple had asked Briggs not to discuss his voice, but there was never a contract between the two of them.
?I did a set of recordings with Scansoft five or six years ago, for text-to-speech services,? said Briggs. ?Five thousand sentences over three weeks, spoken in a very particular way and only reading flat and even. Then they go away and take all the phonics apart, because I have to be able to read anything you want, even if I?ve never actually recorded all those words.?
?You?re not allowed to license the voice to make money,? added Briggs. ?So Apple?s Siri is part of the service once you?ve bought the phone.?
Briggs is not bitter about Apple using his voice because he said he was paid a decent sum from Scansoft. Briggs said that he loves Apple products and believes Siri is a game changer.