English "that" is often translated as "это" in Russian. You can point to star and say "это" or "эта звезда". "То" is used rarely, it is not only about far objects but about something not present here and now or something is not reachable easily.
Phrase "что то?" just sounds like something wrong, maybe because it can be easily mixed with "что-то". So it is almost not used. Native would say "что это там?" or just "что это?"
The speech synth is quite bad... and it's worse when the line is spoken that fast. I've heard native Russians say this phrase (slower) and they pronounce it distinctly "што э́tа", with a break in the middle. I don't think it's supposed to change if you say it faster, although the break will diminish.
I continue to have problems with the translation of 'это' (and it's derivatives). It seems to vary from task to task, most of the time it's 'this', but in this one it's 'that' and sometimes it's 'here' (!)
I pretty much always intuitively get what the (Russian) sentences mean, and mostly you can even substitute the 'this/that/here' for each other and it still makes sense. If you use the word bank, it's a piece of cake, but when I type the translations myself... what's the logic? Why is "this" not always "this"? What makes it incorrect in some cases?