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It's a good tool when you need to dictate once here or there, or if you're looking for a hard-to-find language, as this app supports 67, including many Asian languages. Accuracy: In a word passage, Dictation. Recommendation: Dictation. Languages: Dictation. If you never want to touch your keyboard or mouse again, Dragon by Nuance is the voice dictation software for you.
With a variety of software packages and mobile apps for different use cases Dragon Legal, Dragon Medical, Dragon Professional , Dragon can handle specialized industry vocabulary, and it comes with excellent features, such as the ability to transcribe text from an audio file you upload. Dragon is a leader in speech recognition, and if you're committed to dictation and hands-free computer use, it's worth the investment.
Dragon's desktop software lets you compose text using your voice in just about any app, G Suite included. It also lets you navigate the web and control your computer. Be sure to check the system requirements for the edition you want before buying. You can also count on Dragon to be highly accurate and fast. The apps contain training modules that coach you on how to use it for dictating, editing, and whatever else you want to do with your voice.
Accuracy: Testing on Dragon Professional Individual, all words were correct in a word passage, with one capitalized letter that should have been lowercase. Testing on the mobile app, only one was incorrect out of Recommendation: Dragon is a hefty investment. If you're committed to working hands-free, however, it's worth it because it's the most accurate dictation tool we've found.
Languages: Dragon desktop products are available in several languages, which vary by version, and include Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish.
Gboard, available for both Android and iOS, is a powerful keyboard app that includes a dictation tool. Press and hold the spacebar, and you can dictate at length. Gboard transcribes everything you say in real time and without a time limit, although you need an internet connection to use it. Be warned that Gboard is fast. It will cut you off if you take too long of a breath or even pause for a moment. Its speed is both its strength and its weakness, as it scored the lowest in accuracy of all our apps likely because it forces the speaker to rush through the text.
Accuracy: In transcribing a word passage, Gboard flubbed about 20 percent of it. Recommendation: Gboard works fast, but it pushes you to speak fast, too, which may not be your cup of tea. In getting the hang of it, I found myself rushing and not breathing at a natural rhythm. Use Gboard when you need speed, and when you're dictating a few short ideas at a time. Google Docs contains a built-in tool for dictation and voice-driven editing. Turn it on from the Tools menu, and a microphone appears on your document. Click the mic to start and stop dictation mode. Similar to Dragon, Google Docs Voice Typing gives you plenty of voice commands for formatting, editing, and navigating the page as you write.
For example, you can say "create bulleted list," "select word," or "go to end of paragraph.
It's a solid option if you work primarily in Google Docs and are looking for free dictation software. Recommendation: Voice Typing is an incredibly helpful tool if you use Google Docs avidly, but it doesn't work anywhere else.
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That said, it's one of the only free voice dictation apps that gives you a wide range of commands for editing and formatting. Do more with Google Docs by learning 40 tips for Google Docs power users.
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ListNote Speech-to-Text Notes is one of the most popular speech recognition apps for Android in the Google Play store, with more than 26, downloads. It combines the classic notepad functionality with voice dictation, using your phone's built-in Google Voice Search to turn voice to text while recording the audio at the same time. The app saves each recording as a searchable note that you can categorize and color code. You can share these notes via email, text, and to any other supported app you have installed, as well as play the recorded audio while reading the transcribed text to check it.
ListNote also offers a handful of unique features, like the "Time to Breathe" option that lets you choose how long to wait before stopping speech input. It offers password protection as well, plus backup and encryption options. Accuracy: In using ListNote to transcribe a word passage, the app had six small errors that were easy to correct, but missed a few words in a row in three places.
Recommendation: On Android, ListNote is a speedy text-to-speech app that doesn't have a time limit. It's a good option if you need a free app that you can use quickly and easily, and if you don't mind making a few corrections when finished. Languages: Supports all languages offered in Google's dictation services see Gboard entry.
If you're looking for a similar option on Windows and iOS, you can use the Microsoft OneNote mobile app to record your voice, and then switch to the Window app to run an Audio Search to find words in it. The app doesn't transcribe the full text, however. Speech Recogniser is a dictation powerhouse. You can use it to not only dictate but also translate text into more than 26 languages. The app also lets you post directly to Facebook or Twitter, copy your transcribed text to other apps, and send text via email.
Dragon for Mac is Dead – Nuance Discontinues Software Immediately with No Future Updates
Once you install and open Speech Recogniser, you choose a source language on the home screen and tap the start button to activate the dictation. When you're done, a new screen appears with your text. You can then translate, share, or even playback your recording. It's a quick way to jot down transcribed notes and even translate them into another language when you need. If you use a Windows 10 device, you're probably already familiar with Cortana, the AI voice recognition assistant from Microsoft.
Cortana works in tandem with another tool called Windows 10 Speech Recognition, which is used for dictation and operating your device. In testing, dictation worked without a hitch in Notepad and Word, two apps made by Microsoft, but not at all in Evernote or Google Docs. Make sure the apps you want to use are supported before investing too much time in this tool.
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Speech Recognition uses two different on-screen interfaces, depending on how what you're doing. There's one interface for dictation shown above and a separate one for voice commands, like opening programs and scrolling pages.
Speech Recognition improves the more you use it. You can optionally allow Windows to scan your typed documents to get a better sense of your linguistic choices. As mentioned, Cortana is the other piece of the Windows speech recognition puzzle. Saying, "Hey, Cortana," wakes up this AI assistant, and you can ask it to search online, open apps, save short notes, and look up directions. Accuracy: In transcribing words, Windows Speech Recogniser had 12 errors. More than half were related to capitalization, and two were incorrect words. Recommendation: Windows Speech Recognition and Cortana together offer a compelling dictation package for people who run Windows and use Microsoft apps.
If you compose in many apps not made by Microsoft, you may want to look for another option, however. Once you become experienced with it, a dictation tool can speed up your writing, potentially making you more productive. It lets you multitask, and some people find it helps them generate ideas rather than get stuck on revising and editing.