New saylists could help people overcome challenges by pronouncing certain difficult-to-pronounce speech sounds.

Could listening to Apple Music help treat speech disorders like Speech Disorder (SSD) that make it difficult for people to make certain speech sounds?

That's the purpose of a series of new "saylists," which are custom playlists made up of popular songs that contain sounds that are difficult to say. The idea is that catchy songs with these speech sounds can prompt listeners to sing along. This, in turn, can help them overcome vocal challenges through repetition.

Forget playlists, these are "saylists"

"Saylists are a collection of playlists, each focusing on a different sound," notes Apple. "By choosing one and singing along, you can practice a sound that you are struggling with in a way that is fun and, most importantly, not boring."

Saylists contain songs by famous artists such as Ed Sheeran, Madonna, Coldplay, Rita Ora, Rihanna, Adele, David Bowie, Justin Bieber, Beyoncé, George Michael, Kylie Minogue and many others. There are 10 saylists available in the service, covering the sounds "ch", "s", "k", "l", "d", "f", "t", "r" and "g". All songs are currently in English.

The easiest way to access them is to type "saylists" in the search bar. Saylists range from twelve to 20 songs and play or behave like any other playlist – meaning you can download the playlists for offline listening. Some songs appear on multiple saylists.

The new feature was developed by Apple in collaboration with Rothco, part of Accenture Interactive, and Warner Music. ZDNet notes that Rothco first developed an algorithm with which the specific speech sounds in songs can be picked out. Apple Music then used this algorithm to find suitable tracks in its catalog of around 70 million tracks. Then songs by Warner Music and speech and language therapist Anna Biavati-Smith were selected to create the finished saylists.

Available on Apple Music

"Our goal was to redefine the long and often arduous journey young people with atypical language can experience," said Alan Kelly, Rothco's chief creative officer.

"Some of the members of our team who have worked on Saylists themselves grew up with SSDs. So it's a personal project too. We realized that there is one place where a lot of people enjoy the rhythmic repetition of words and sounds – in The key is that we can analyze as many songs as we can to bring something interesting to kids and when we combine that with Warner's curation we can be sure that the songs in the Saylists will appeal to a wide variety of young people . "

Saylists are available exclusively for Apple Music. However, if they work as well as planned, hopefully a similar approach could be taken by other competing music streamers in the future.

The "Up Next" feature of Apple Music is introduced internationally

The feature is intended to help promote emerging artists. Apple is now rolling it out in new markets.

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About the author

Luke Dormehl
(120 articles published)

Luke has been an Apple fan since the mid-1990s. His primary interests in technology are smart devices and the interface between technology and the liberal arts.

From Luke Dormehl

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