Although Siri may be a woman's voice in the U.S., in some European countries it is a man's voice -- Jon Briggs to be more specific or "Daniel" according to Siri. But Briggs didn't even know he would be the voice of the personal assistant part of the new iPhone 4S until he saw the program demonstrated -- using his voice -- in a television commercial.
The Guardian reports that even though Siri was just introduced to the public till last month, recording for the program's voice began six years ago:
Briggs, a former technology journalist who “fell into” voice-over work, recorded “Daniel” for Scansoft, which subsequently merged with Nuance, the company that works with Apple on Siri.
The notoriously secretive Apple has, it should be said, asked Briggs not to talk about Siri – “We’re not about one person,” they told him – but, since Briggs pointed out that he had never had a contract with them, the company has not been back in touch.
“I did a set of recordings with Scansoft five or six years ago, for text-to-speech services,” says Briggs. “Five thousand sentences over three weeks, spoken in a very particular way and only reading flat and even. Then they go away and take all the phonics apart, because I have to be able to read anything you want, even if I’ve never actually recorded all those words.”
You can presumably hear "Daniel" in this demo by Geekanoids:
According to The Guardian, "Daniel" is the only option for a male voice in the U.K., but this isn't Briggs' only role as an electronic devices voice. He is also the voice of satnav for Garmin, TomTom, Jaguar, Land Rover, Audi and Porsche.
Whomever is the female voice of Siri in the U.S. still remains a mystery.