Listen to Kawasaki City Councilor Norio Aoki’s Multilingual Digital Voice
Norio Aoki enlisted the help of AI Voice Platform CoeFont to increase the accessibility of his website.
CoeFont Co., Ltd. announced the release of Kawasaki City’s Councilor Norio Aoki’s updated website. The CoeFont team replicated the voice of Mr Aoki and created a multilingual digital voice to create audio for his website.
January 30th, 2024, 12:00 JST
As Kawasaki City celebrates the 100th anniversary of its municipal council on July 1st, 2024, a variety of initiatives are being undertaken by citizens, businesses, organizations and other entities to create a ‘New Kawasaki’ for the next 100 years. In the coming era, the use of cutting-edge technologies, including AI, will not only be essential in daily life, but also to enable organizations and individuals from diverse backgrounds to thrive. Aoki’s strong desire to make Kawasaki a hub where different talents and technologies can flourish gave CoeFont the opportunity to showcase the potential of AI voice technology in action.
AI Voice Platform CoeFont recently worked with Kawasaki City politician Norio Aoki to increase accessibility on his website. The councillor recorded his voice in Japanese and CoeFont created a multilingual digital voice that could be used with their cross-lingual text-to-speech editor to create audio for his website in both Japanese and English.
CoeFont can create natural digital voices that sound just like your own. Digital Voices are voice replicas produced with advanced AI algorithms and deep learning techniques to imitate the complex array of tones and colors that make each voice original. Once created, the voice is able to read out typed text in your own voice.
Adding audio with digital voices made the site more accessible, not only to individuals with disabilities, but to elderly Japanese people who can’t read small characters, busy parents who don’t have time to sit and read through the website, and immigrants who have moved to the city.
The councilor, who has been elected for four consecutive terms, hoped his updated site would allow more constituents to understand city politics and follow the changes that are being made in the city.
Councilor Aoki commented
“Kawasaki City is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its municipal administration this year. In order to promote inclusivity and involvement among various groups, the city has implemented various technologies. As a part of this effort, I have introduced a digital voice feature on my official website. Now, citizens have the option to listen to my website and hear my voice. My digital voice reads in both Japanese and English, making important information more accessible to more people. The city will continue to expand this kind of initiative to contribute to the development of Kawasaki City.”
Digital Voices for Accessibility
Digital voices have proven to be a wonderful tool in enhancing accessibility in various areas of society. Apart from assisting people with speech disabilities through text-to-speech, digital voices can also be helpful to individuals with visual impairments, those who have difficulty reading for extended periods, or have dyslexia, individuals who are neurodivergent, those who need to communicate or access information in different languages or accents.
Too Busy for Politics
With long work schedules and not enough childcare support (something the councillor is trying to address), keeping up with local news and politics can be challenging. As a result of our increasingly hectic lives, many individuals find it difficult to find the time to read traditional news sources, leading to a shift towards podcasts and narrated articles.
Audio content consumption has experienced a significant resurgence recently, reminiscent of that of the golden years of radio. With more and more individuals engaging with this medium while performing other tasks, such as household chores and commuting. According to The Infinite Dial* report, there were 464.7 million podcast listeners globally in 2023, a figure that is projected to increase to 504.9 million by 2024.
In light of these developments, the Kawasaki City Council turned to CoeFont to incorporate audio content into their information dissemination strategies to ensure their constituents remain informed.
CoeFont’s Voice For All Project
CoeFont believes it is imperative to use cutting-edge technology to support people’s lives and create a better future. We believe AI voices can be used to support people and benefit society, which is why we are developing an ethical digital voice hub for both digital voice creators and users.
If you would like to collaborate with us on an upcoming project, feel free to reach out via this form.
Norio Aoki is a member of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and the elected councillor of Kawasaki City Council. As a father of three he has advocated for children’s health and education, as well as support for busy parents.
His website is already up and running. Listen to Norio Aoki’s digital voice reading his policies in Japanese and English from the link below.
AI Voice Platform CoeFont
CoeFont( https://CoeFont.cloud ), an innovative AI Voice Platform using the latest AI technology to convert voices into expressive, easy-to-use digital voices which can be used with Text-To-Speech, Voice Changer, and Cross-Lingual TTS. The CoeFont platform provides immediate access to our Voice Hub with over 10,000 diverse digital voices. Whether for training sessions, internal announcements, audiobooks, promotional content, or live during meetings or streaming, these voices are always ready to bring your ideas to life.
About CoeFont Co., Ltd.
CoeFont Co., Ltd. develops and provides AI-based services, established in 2020 and registered as a Tokyo Tech Venture. We are currently conducting research on AI-based voice synthesis and providing “CoeFont” under the concept of “bringing voices to all creators.” We aim to pioneer the voice content market with easy-to-understand natural AI voices.