LAS VEGAS--Even with the advent of robotic text-to-speech turn-by-turn directions, I still really enjoy playing with the different prerecorded voices on the GPS devices that I test. There's something about getting directions in a funny accent that's just comforting to me, which is why Garmin's new Voice Studio software is so intriguing.
The downloadable software will allow users to record and upload their own voice prompts to compatible Nuvi GPS devices, so that they can hear turn-by-turn directions in their own voices. The software guides users through recording replacements for the 65 words and phrases that the device uses to give directions, which can then be previewed in the application before packaging for download to your or your friends' devices.
I can see all kinds of ways that this could be dangerous in the wrong hands. I could confuse my parents by swapping the audio prompts for left and right; replace all of the voice prompts with Samuel L. Jackson quotes; or prank my friends by replacing only one of the prompts with a random swear word. Hilarity is bound to ensue.
Whether you choose to use the Garmin Voice Studio for good or for evil, it is currently available as a free download at http://www.garmin.com/voicestudio.