Murf, a startup that creates synthetic speech, lends its voice to content creators from all sizes

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The synthetic speech tech startup Murf provides a voice literally to content creators of any size. Murf announced today that it raised $10 million in Series A funding from Matrix partners. The company now boasts a library of over 120 AI voices with human-parity across 20 languages. Returning investors Elevation Capital, as well as prominent angel investors such Ola founder Ankit Bhai, Disney Streaming SVP product, Ashwini Asokan founder of Mad Street Dap, and Pushkar Mukewar founder Drip Capital, participated in the funding.

Murf was founded in October 2020 by IIT-Kharagpur friends Sneha, Ankur, and Divyanshu. The previous funding announcement was a $1.5million seed led by Elevation Capital. Angel investors also helped to recruit talent and invest in product innovation. Murf claims that the company has grown 26X in ARR since its seed round and has synthesized over one million voice-over projects in a wide range of styles and tones.

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Murf’s technology was used by a number of people, including a tech entrepreneur and an artist who created an entire movie using deep fake programs, AI art models and AI Voices from Murf; an entertainment animation agency which created a TV series with a collection Murf voices; authors creating fantasy fiction audiobooks using Murf’s AI voices; and a YouTube celebrity who used Murf’s AI voice to create an rap video.

Economic pitch was told by Edkie, CEO of Murf that although Murf’s founders worked in different areas in the past they all experienced the same problems creating high-quality voice overs. This involved creating product demos, updating them, and recording radio and television ads. He said that the pandemic had “provided a boost in multimedia creation, and the demand for scalable sound content was growing rapidly.”

Murf clients have used the platform in many ways, including audiobooks, explainer videos, advertising and e-learning. Murf.ai is a SaaS platform that allows clients to produce high-quality voiceovers. Clients range from individuals to SMBS and large enterprises. They work in a variety of sectors including education, media, entertainment, marketing and advertising, podcasting and customer support.

Economic pitch spoke to Edkie about how content creators and marketers often record voiceovers or outsource it. Both are costly, cumbersome and time-consuming. Murf, however, allows users to create “human-like voiceovers” without having to purchase recording equipment or hire a voice actor.

The company also hopes to eliminate restrictions on text-to-speech’s capabilities. TTS is a technology that has been in use for a while, but voice quality limitations have limited its use. We are able to use AI and deep learning to create synthetic voices with high quality that mimic the natural prosody of human speech.

Murf’s platform features an AI-enabled SaaS that allows users to create “human-like voices” for videos and presentations. Users don’t need to purchase expensive recoding equipment nor hire a voice artist. Online voice recording booths are available for content creators, allowing them to sample many speaking styles. Murf hopes to bridge the diversity gap in traditional text-to-speech platforms by including voices from accents like African American, British and Australian.

Murf’s founders used market reports to estimate that the global text-speech market will reach $7.06 Billion by 2028. This growth rate is 14.6% CAG. The voiceover and dubbing market is expected to bring in $8 billion each year by 2027.

Although text-to-speech technology has been around for a long time, their quality limitations meant that they were mainly used by chat bots and voice assistants. Recent developments in AI, deep learning and AI have made it possible to create synthetic voices with the prosody of human speech. Murf Studios offers more than 120 human-variety AI voices that can speak in more than 20 languages. Murf Studios’ AI engine is trained using hours of real human speech. Murf also partners with voice actors to provide voices from other countries, such as Australian English, British English, and African American English.

Murf’s AI-powered text to speech can also learn from context information to provide the correct responses. Murf is described by its founders as an “all in one voice solution”. Users can add images, videos, and background music to the program. You can also use the International Phonetic Alpha (IPA) to pronounce it, and voice customizations allow you to change your pitch, emphasis, speed, and pause.

Murf earns money by offering a subscription to its services. It was released for beta testing in January 2021. Over the past 18 months, it has grown 22x in ARR, synthesized more than one million voiceover projects, and had a total of over 1,000,000 voiceovers.

Edkie stated that Murf’s main competitors include large tech and cloud companies like Google, Amazon and Polly, which have the best text to speech platforms on the market. Murf stands out with its natural-sounding AI voices, which can be customized to suit different accents and styles.

Edkie stated that the platform is more than a text-to-speech tool. It allows users to add images and videos to their presentations and voiceovers, as well as background music, to sync them together to create engaging content. Murf’s AI-powered TTS can also extract large amounts of context information and create contextual speech. Edkie explained that the TTS has an embedded context awareness, which can recognize common entity formats such as numbers, currency, percentages and addresses. This reduces their randomness and brings them closer to a standard.

Mukul Arora, Elevation Capital’s managing partner, stated in a prepared statement that “AI-driven voiceovers with life-like voices are the next frontier of the text-to-speech market.” With their unique IP and stellar founding team, Murf is well positioned to be a leader in this market. Their tech-first focus and execution prowess is evident in the solid growth and traction they have achieved so far. We are excited to expand our partnership with Murf.”

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