Novel Effects is matching nighttime reading with tech-powered sound effects

An app called Novel Effects uses voice-recognition technology to deliver sound effects and music to books when you read them out loud. The goal of the app is to bridge the digital and real world to make a more engaging experience for kids at home or in the classroom.

The app provides an interactivity without having children stare at a screen. There is opportunity for face-to-face personal connection with sounds that offer a fuller experience. There is a beta version of the app currently available for iPhone and iPad with an app for Android on its way. The service comes with sound effects for a handful of books such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where the Wild Things Are.

Novel Effect makes money when books are purchased from Amazon via the app. In the fall the company will be introducing a more refined version of the app with sound effects for over 100 books and will charge a $5 monthly fee to use it. The company currently has a partnership with Hachette Book Group and is speaking with several other publishers to expand their services.

During a time where people are getting more comfortable with voice recognition it seems that Novel Effect has struck at the right time. Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa are gaining popularity acting as a digital assistant to millions of people.

To activate Novel Effect you open a book in the app that accompanies the real-world book. This prompts the app to start listening and analyzing your speech to figure out where you are and to synchronize the right noises for the plot. The program allows you to read from any section of the book rather than needing to follow a sequential order to power the sound effects. It also allows you to spend as much time as you like on a page to talk about what’s happening and advance at your own pace.

Novel Effect hopes to offer a tool that allows readers to create their own sound-enhanced stories or add sounds to existing ones.

Novel Effects

An app called Novel Effects uses voice-recognition technology to deliver sound effects and music to books when you read them out loud. The goal of the app is to bridge the digital and real world to make a more engaging experience for kids at home or in the classroom.

The app provides an interactivity without having children stare at a screen. There is opportunity for face-to-face personal connection with sounds that offer a fuller experience. There is a beta version of the app currently available for iPhone and iPad with an app for Android on its way. The service comes with sound effects for a handful of books such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where the Wild Things Are.