I got some info I would like to share with those out their who want to desparatly add read aloud. It seems no one on here but me actually has something to say about this subject.
Yes, you can add read aloud to a completed iBook but you will need to add code (XML) to it. Here are some links on how to do it.
MAKING A FIXED LAYOUT BOOK:
HOW TO PUT READ ALOUD INTO A FIXED LAYOUT BOOK:
She is the only person right now who actually tells you step by step how to do it. I bought her book from Barns and Noble (but you have to order it because its a print on demand book). Its great and the only book I could find on the subject.
You will need an epub compatable text editor, get a little XML coding (not too much, its just a little you will need), an audio editor and microphone to record your narration, and patience.
Also, if you don't want to touch code at all, this site called Kitepress will do it for you. They even send it to itunes for you and put it on Amazon for you too and do a little promotion by putting your book under their publishing name so all books link to ones made using Kitepress. (Don't know if this is good or not but something to think about) But they take a percentage out of any of your profit when you sell it.
Liz Castro is the girl to talk to about read aloud so check her out first.
To add to what I said: The only way you can add read aloud to an ibook is by using easy epub code editor. (Go to itunes and look it up). This app works on the ipad and is the ONLY app that can generate smil/xml code for read aloud. The only thing is that you cannot use it on anything but a raw epub file. You cannot use it with ibooks author or with any other file. Hope this helps.
One more thing:
I just used easy epub code editor with an audio file and Audacity using the labeling trick and it worked. I labeled the audio track like Liz Castro said and then I uploaded it to easy epub code editor through itunes (like the app said to do) and previewed it in ibooks. It works. I wish someone could have helped me when I first started. I bought several programs, books, read articles and this is the only solution to making a book with read aloud +highlighting WITHOUT programming. If you want a really easy program that is even better, try Book creator. It doesn't have read aloud feature but it has audio recording feature built in and it lays out the book better than epub code editor. Good luck with your book.
EASY EPUB CREATOR:
Don't get any other ibook creator apps but these two and get Liz Castro's book. You will waste money if you buy anything else.
I just wanted to help others who had this problem. Like I said, I had to waste a lot of time and money figuring this out. So I might as well try to spare others from the headache. Someone on this forum is going around, advertising their web site that charges around $500 to do the read aloud feature for them. When I respond to that same post with the cheap alternative, she is silent. I'm not saying she's a scammer, but she is taking advantage of those who don't know whats out there.
iBook author is like powerpoint. You make slides with pictures, video and simple interactive elements. iBook only works on iPad and is NOT an epub file. If you wanted to publish the book on Barns & Noble, you are stuck because iBook author makes an iBook, not an ebook. An epub book is like an HTML web page. The only difference is that it has pages set up as a book. Since its like HTML, you can add just about anything if you know the code. Also, the epub book is recognized by all ebook readers. The read aloud code for the book AND the read aloud code is generated by the esay epub creator for people like me who know a litle HTML but don't have time to code from scratch. It sets up the epub book for you with no coding, but streamlines the read aloud part of the code. I have used it for my first book and I am going to use it exclusivly for my next books I make with read aloud. You can do the read aloud code by hand, but it will take much longer and you are prone to make coding mistakes that break the books function.
I like ibooks author but I need to have the read aloud feature in my book. So easy epub creator is the only way to add it without reading a long coding book and coding it by hand.
Easy ePub Creator is mostly for read aloud and requires some coding knowledge. If you need a book creating app that allows easy use and no programing but easy audio inserting, You should download "Book creator" https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/book-creator-for-ipad/id442378070?mt=8
* Import video and music, and record speech within the app.
* Choose from portrait, landscape or square book sizes.
* Quickly add pictures from the Photos app, or grab them from the web, then move, resize and rotate them with your fingers.
* Edit text using the onscreen keyboard, and apply rich formatting to make it look great.
* Choose from all of the iPad's fonts - over 50 to use.
* Layout your book exactly as you want it with guidelines and snap positioning.
* A quick tap and you're reading your book in iBooks!
* Send your books to your friends over email, to iTunes on your computer, over Dropbox, or to a WebDav server.
* Print using AirPrint or other printer apps, or export as PDF.
* With your books created using the international ePub standard you know they will be readable now and in the future.
* Support for iBooks’ fixed layout format, including double page images and soundtracks. Please note that fixed layout iBooks are not ideal for long texts such as novels.
* Includes a Getting Started tutorial plus online support articles at www.redjumper.net/bookcreator
Maybe one of you guys could shed some insight on how to accomplish what I'm trying to do:
I am attempting to create a children's storybook iBook with full imagers and read aloud narration preceded by music (following the turning of a page, music plays and then the text is read aloud in a recorded voice)
Can I just embed any MP3 file?
Are there size limitations?
Are there relevant grounds for a book with music to be rejected from the iBook store?
Hi, I made my iBook with Easy ePub Creator. I'm not advertising for his app but for me, I wanted to create a fixed layout children's book with text highlighting synced with audio (with me reading). Since i do not know SMIL, I used this app. I was surprised to be able to make it with basic code (just just a little bit of HTML for adjusting image dimensions and text layout). It generates the SMIL files for the read aloud text highlighting. I used Audacity (free program) to tag the audio file for each word (long process) for each page. I added my own music/sound effects later using adobe sound booth. I tested I and exported it to ePub. I submitted it to apple and just got a minor error. You can't put spaces in the audio file name or apple will reject it. Here is my book on iTunes (currently free) made entirely from Easy ePub Creator (and DAZ Studio Pro for rendering).
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