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No Need to Play Hide ‘n’ Seek to Find Text-to-Speech on the New 8.9-Inch Kindle Fire HD – Here’s the Scoop

Some Kindle owners will go through their entire lives without ever using the Kindle’s Text-to-Speech feature, but if you’re like me and you enjoy using it, you’d be disappointed if you couldn’t find it on a new 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD, right?

Well, not to worry. I was a little concerned when I unboxed the latest model this week, but once I had done a little rooting around I found the text-to-speech feature and unleashed it for good for (almost) all my Kindle books and personal docs. It’s hidden from view at first, but here’s how you can set it up on yours. You can use any TTS-enabled book to unleash your TTS functionality, of course, but in the screen shots below I am using the excellent memoir Playing Bigger Than You Are by my old friend and colleague Stewart Acuff.

Here’s how to access Text-to-Speech on the new 8.9-Inch Kindle Fire HD in four easy steps:

FIG. 1. First, from any page in a TTS-enabled book like this one, tap the bottom of the screen and you will see a progress bar showing where you are in the book. If TTS is not turned on, it will look like the progress bar in Fig. 1 above.
FIG. 2. Select the Aa font button in the upper left corner of the display and you’ll see a pop-up screen like that shown in the upper left corner of Fig. 2 above. Text-to-Speech still does not appear as an option, so on this pop-up, select “More Options.”
FIG. 3. From the “More Options” pop-up that appears in the upper left corner of the display, select the “On” button to the right of “Text-to-Speech.”
FIG. 4. Tap anywhere on the rest of the page to bring the book back “to the front” of your display, then tap again at the bottom of the display. In Fig. 4, for example, tap just below the words “The next morning I told Holt” and the Text-to-Speech control line will come up with a “Play” icon at the left.

Hope that helps!

And my apologies for the fact that I used the same page in all four screen shots here. I didn’t want to infringe on my old pal Stewart’s copyright. So if you want to find out what he told Holt the next morning, you’ll just have to ante up $2.99 to buy the book. Which I hope you do, because it is a pretty inspiring piece of work. Like Stewart.