Amazon Prime has become the first streaming giant to finally counter the poor sound quality of modern flatscreen TVs.
There has been a surge in people watching shows and movies with subtitles due to mumbled dialogue and background noise that is too loud.
Amazon has launched its Dialogue Boost, making it easier to hear characters talking without compromising quality.
The AI-powered feature isolates speech patterns, enhancing audio without increasing music or effects.
The AI-powered feature enhances dialogue without increasing music and effects. It lives in the audio and subtitles drop-down menu and is available across all devices that support Prime Video
The feature lives in the audio and subtitles drop-down menu and is available across all devices that support Prime Video.
Raf Soltanovich, VP of technology at Prime Video and Amazon Studios, said in Wednesday’s announcement: ‘At Prime Video, we are committed to building an inclusive, equitable, and enjoyable streaming experience for all our customers.
‘Our library of captioned and audio-described content continues to grow, and by leveraging our technological capabilities to create industry-first innovations like Dialogue Boost, we are taking another step to create a more accessible streaming experience.’
Using AI, the system can seek out dialogue rather than all sounds playing during a show or movie.
Users choose between medium and high as their preferred volume.
Dialogue Boost is available for select Amazon Originals, including ‘Jack Ryan’ and ‘The Marvelous Mrs Maisel,’ and specific movies.
Amazon did not disclose all of them, but said ‘a handful of titles.’
‘The feature will become available on additional titles this year,’ Amazon shared in the announcement.
A study conducted in 2022 found 50 percent of US TV viewers use subtitles, and 55 percent of those surveyed find dialogue on TV hard to hear.
The results stem from a survey of more than 1,260 Americans asking how and why subtitles are used.
Amazon Prime Video has been criticized for its terrible sound quality, but Dialogue Boost claims to improve audio
Using AI, the system can seek out dialogue rather than all sounds playing during a show or movie. Users choose between medium and high as their preferred volume
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Most recently, Netflix UK viewers were left traumatized by the ‘terrifying’ science fiction horror film Splice.
At least 89 percent of respondents indicated that they used subtitles in the past, with 62 percent saying they use subtitles more on streaming services than regular TV.
The study also found that 53 percent of Americans use subtitles more often than they used to, and audio mixing issues seem to be at least part of why.
‘A whopping 78 percent have difficulty hearing dialogue due to loud background music in films and TV shows, leading 55 percent of respondents to agree that it is harder to hear dialogue on screen than it used to be,’ according to the study.
Netflix also made headlines this week, revealing it has delayed its long-touted crack down on password sharing.
It also announced it is permanently shuttering the DVD-mail-service that initially defined the company when it launched about 25 years ago.
The streaming giant shared the developments on Tuesday, as it reported a surge in subscriber growth for the first quarter that exceeded analyst expectations but revenue that was slightly below Wall Street forecasts.
Netflix said it added 1.75 million new subscribers for the quarter that ended in March, nearly 550,000 more than consensus estimates from FactSet.
This starkly contrasts the loss of 200,000 subscribers that the company suffered in the same period last year.