Features Built To Increase Productivity & Efficiency For Both Voice Typing & Regular Key Typing
For many of us, key-typing is slow and thus time-consuming. Speechnotes lets you type at the speed of speech .Speechnotes lets you move from voice-typing to key-typing seamlessly. This way, you can dictate when convenient and type when more appropriate. You can also dictate and edit your text results right away, and continue dictating. No need to go through app modes or even stop dictation.Insert punctuation marks by speech or by a single click.
Other features built for productivity for both type of typing are:Auto save that saves the document in real time upon any change, so you don’t ever have to disturb yourself with it.Export to Google Drive or download as a document to your computer.One click to email, or print your note.Automatic smart capitalization of letters at the beginning of sentences.No Login, registration, installation, or download needed. Works “right out of the box”. So, where are all the automatically saved notes stored? Speechnotes stores all your data on your own computer, through your browser. The advantage is that you don’t have to sign in. The disadvantage is that you cannot access these documents from other computers. For that – Speechnotes lets you export to Google Drive. Another small disadvantage is that after many many notes, you might run out of storage room, so, it’s a good practice to delete from time-to-time unnecessary older notes.Unlimited usage for free.
What Is Dictation Software
As you search online for dictation software, keep in mind that it can include all different types of apps and services. The terms dictation software, speech-to-text, voice recognition, voice-to-text, and speech recognition can all mean a program that converts your voice to text on a screen in real-time. But sometimes lumped into a search for these terms are products that provide something else entirely.
For example, some products will transcribe audio files to text, but they do not transcribe your voice to text in real-time. Others market themselves as personal AI assistants and may include a dictation component. And you may run across companies that provide transcription servicesusing humans to transcribe your voice files to text.
Then there are those AI assistants built into many of the devices we use each day: Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Microsoft’s Cortana. These are fine for scheduling meetings, playing music, and finding a place to eat, but they aren’t designed to transcribe your articles, meetings, and other documents.
For this review, we’ve focused on software, whether standalone or embedded in a device, meant for transcribing speech to text.
But as the technology has improved over the last 20 years and costs have come down, dictation software is now as a tool to increase productivity almost instantly. Look no further than the changed working environment in the wake of COVID-19: more working from home means more opportunity to do things like dictate emails.
Snapshot Of Our Top 3 Best Speech
1. Best for Video Editing – PowerDirector 365
If you need to edit videos and add titles to your final product, then PowerDirector 365 is your best option. It’s a stand-out software that allows you to edit, enhance, and produce your videos at a professional level with no prior editing knowledge needed. Its speech-to-text tool is highly accurate, fast, and works in multiple languages. Detailed Review >
2. Best for Windows 11 – Built-In Dictation
Windows 11 has built-in speech recognition software that converts your speech into text with a few simple clicks. It’s straightforward to use and features some pretty impressive accuracy. Those utilizing Windows 11 will find this software easy to use. Detailed Review >
3. Best for MacOS – Built-In Dictation
MacOS also has a built-in feature for speech recognition that allows you to convert your spoken words into text with just one click. It’s incredibly user-friendly and boasts some of the highest accuracy levels in the market. Anyone using an Apple operating system will enjoy the simplicity of this software. Detailed Review >
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Best Free Dictation Software For Windows
Windows 10 Speech Recognition
Because Windows 11 was recently released , I decided to test both the new dictation feature and the Windows 10 version . Both are included in their respective operating systems with nothing additional to install. To begin dictating in either OS, open an app, and on your keyboard, press the Windows logo key + H. A microphone icon and gray box will appear at the top of your screen. Make sure your cursor is in the space where you want to dictate.
When it’s ready for your dictation, it will say Listening. You have about 10 seconds to start talking before the microphone turns off. If that happens, just click it again and wait for Listening to pop up. To stop the dictation, click the microphone icon again or say “stop talking.”
In my test, Windows 10 had only three errors, and all were words that every other app missed as well. Other than that, it provided nearly flawless dictation. By contrast, Windows 11 contained 13 errors for each of the two times I tested it, making Windows 10 the clear winner for accuracy. Each OS includes about three dozen commands for punctuation, symbols, and for completing actions within a document. Windows 10 includes seven dictation languages, but commands are only available in U.S. English. Windows 11 boosts the number of languages recognized to 36 plus a handful of dialects and commands for all these languages.
Google Speech To Text Online
As you click on Mic icon it will turn into red colour which represents that it has started listening to you now. Now, you just need to start speaking in front of your Laptop/PCs mic and it will write or transcribe for you by converting audio to text.
If you want to use Google Speech to text on PC but for some audio file that you have recorded earlier. You can also play that file in front of your computer Mic using a smartphone or some other audio playing devices. It will be really helpful for those looking for online free transcribing audio to text for their audio interview or some video/audio presentation.
Although playing audio in front of PCs mic can be captured by the Google Voice typing to transcribe, there is one method better than it for audio files.
The other method is using the CA Virtual Audio cable. It is a small tool that redirects any application audio output running on PC to the input of other applications.
For this method see our article Step 5.
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Common Problems On Desktop
Error: ‘SpeechTexter cannot access your microphone’.
Please give permission to access your microphone.
Error: ‘No speech was detected. Please try again’.
If you get this error while you are speaking, make sure your microphone is set as default recording device on your browser .
If youre using a headset, make sure the mute switch on the cord is off.
Error: ‘Network error’
The internet connection is poor. Please try again later.
The result won’t transfer to the “editor”.
The result confidence is not high enough or there is a background noise. An accumulation of long text in the buffer can also make the engine stop responding, please make some pauses in the speech.
The results are wrong.
Please speak loudly and clearly. Background noise from fans, air conditioners, refrigerators, etc. can drop the accuracy significantly. Try to turn them off if you can.
Can I upload an audio file and get the transcription?
No, this feature is not available.
How do I transcribe an audio file on my pc or from the web?
Playback your file in any player and hit the ‘Start’ button on SpeechTexter website. For better results select “Stereo Mix” as the default recording device on your browser, if you are accessing SpeechTexter and the file from the same device.
I don’t see “Stereo mix” option
How to use the voice commands list?
Can I prevent my custom voice commands from disappearing after closing the browser?
I lost my dictated work after closing the browser.
Is Voice Dictation For You
While not perfect, the accuracy of most dictation software is excellent. That and the already free versions packaged with so many devices and apps make using the technologyat least for quicker tasks like note takingan easy decision.
If you spend a lot of time writing for work or even fun, it makes sense to try dictation just to get the feel of speaking the words that normally come through your fingers. This may be the hardest part for many usersold habits die hard. Once you get used to dictating your thoughts, you may find it hard to go back to typing.
This article was originally published in April 2016. Previous versions had contributions from Emily Esposito and Jill Duffy.
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Reviews & Users Feedback
Weve only been on air for a short while and already featured on ProductHunt and other international tech magazines. But we are most proud of our users feedback. Speechnotes is the highest ranked speech-recognition app on the Chrome-store, rated higher than 4.5 stars! Well above other online alternatives. Here are some of the user reviews we got on the Chrome store:
“I would like to say that I am very pleased with this dictation plug in. It is better and much more accurate than the other two that I have tried. This is definitely my preferred dictation app.In fact, I wrote this review using the app.Thumbs up to the developers!!”
“It does what it says on the tin…& more. Priceless. Tony Hawes. Whose faith has been restored in Apps by this one.”
… And there are many more. Read all of them on the Chrome store
Thanks a lot guys! Your feedback gives us great motivation to keep going in developing great solutions
What Is Speech Recognition Software
Speech recognition software is a computer program designed to recognize human vocal communication and transcribe it into text. It uses artificial intelligence and natural language processing to convert voice input into a typewritten format without needing a keyboard.
In terms of speed, these programs can transcribe much faster than humans, making them an ideal solution for automating batch transcriptions.
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Common Commands You Should Know For Speech
In general, Windows will convert anything you say into text and place it in the selected window. But there are many commands that, rather than being translated into text, will tell Windows to take a specific action. Most of these commands are related to editing text, and you can discover many of them on your own in fact, there are dozens of these commands. Here are the most important ones to get you started:
- Punctuation. You can speak punctuation out loud during dictation. For example, you can say “Dear Steve comma how are you question mark.”
- New line. Saying “new line” has the same effect as pressing the Enter key on the keyboard.
- Stop dictation. At any time, you can say “stop dictation,” which has the same effect as pausing or clicking another window.
- Go to the of . Windows can move the cursor to various places in your document based on a voice command. You can say “go to the start of the document,” or “go to the end of the paragraph,” for example, to quickly start dictating text from there.
- Undo that. This is the same as clicking “Undo” and undoes the last thing you dictated.
- Select . You can give commands to select a word or paragraph. It’s actually a lot more powerful than that you can say things like “select the previous three paragraphs.”
Best For Enterprises: Dragon Professional Group
Dragon Professional Group
Get a free USB headset when you purchase Dragon Home or Dragon Professional Individual using the code USB2022 at checkout.
Even though documentation is a crucial part of any organization’s day-to-day workflow, it usually takes up a lot of valuable time and resources. However, it doesn’t have to be that way, thanks to Dragon Professional Group. The best speech-to-text software for enterprises allows employees to create documentation 3x faster and 99% recognition accuracy. This is made possible by the program’s next-generation speech engine, which uses “Deep Learning” technology to achieve high recognition accuracy while dictating, even for users with accents or those working in open office spaces.
Dragon Professional Group also makes it simple to automate repetitive tasks and streamline multi-step processes. You can configure custom voice commands which is helpful when quickly adding frequently used items into documents. The system also allows you to create time-saving macros, or add industry-specific terms to the software’s vocabulary to share with other employees.
The program also comes with “Nuance Management Center,” a centralized user administration console that allows for easy management of everything from user profiles to custom command databases.
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Advice On Microphones For Dictation
With dictation software, your voice is captured by a microphone, which is included on your device or as part of a specific software suite . For the occasional dictation user capturing notes and shopping lists, the built-in microphone should work fine. But if you’re using it more intenselyconsistently writing content, dictating meetings, sending emailsconsider something that more effectively nabs the sound waves from your voice.
For under $100, there are lots of options for headsets with mics or external microphones used by podcasters and YouTube interviewers. For this test, I used a mid-priced USB headset from Jabra for all but the mobile apps. It’s lightweight, very comfortable, and has reasonably good sound/voice quality. If you prefer not being tethered to your device, wireless options like the Jabra Elite 45h might be more your speed. And the highly-rated Blue Snowball USB microphone has a cool retro look and its own adjustable stand.
Best Free Dictation Software For Apple Devices
Look no further than your Mac, iPhone, or iPad for one of the best dictation tools. Apple’s built-in Dictation feature, powered by Siri , ships as part of Apple’s desktop and mobile operating systems. On iOS devices, you use it by pressing the microphone icon on the stock keyboard. On your desktop, you turn it on by going to System Preferences > Keyboard > Dictation, and then use a keyboard shortcut to activate it in your app.
By default, Apple Dictation requires the internet to work and has a time limit of about 30 seconds for each smattering of speech. To remove those limits, enable Enhanced Dictation, which requires OS X v10.9 or later or iPhone 6s or newer. Enhanced Dictation adds a local file to your device so that you can dictate offline.
You can format and edit your text using simple commands, such as “new paragraph” or “select previous word.” Tip: you can view available commands in a small window, like a little cheat sheet, while learning the ropes. Apple also offers advanced commands for creating custom ones.
Apple Dictation price: Included with macOS, iOS, and iPadOS devices
Apple Dictation accuracy: On the 207-word test, 20 words were inaccurate, but note that I was using a borrowed MacBook Pro to perform the test, so it was the first time the Siri speech-recognition engine had heard my voice. Regular users of Siri would likely experience better results.
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Install A Voice Typing Language
You can use a voice typing language that’s different than the one you’ve chosen for Windows. Here’s how:
Select Start > Settings > Time & language > Language & region.
Find Preferred languages in the list and select Add a language.
Search for the language you’d like to install, then select Next.
Select Next or install any optional language features you’d like to use. These features, including speech recognition, aren’t required for voice typing to work.
To see this feature’s supported languages, see the list in this article.
How To Turn On The Speech
It’s likely that speech-to-text is not turned on by default, so you need to enable it before you start dictating to Windows.
1. Click the “Start” button and then click “Settings,” designated by a gear icon.
2. Click “Time & Language.”
3. In the navigation pane on the left, click “Speech.”
4. If you’ve never set up your microphone, do it now by clicking “Get started” in the Microphone section. Follow the instructions to speak into the microphone, which calibrates it for dictation.
5. Scroll down and click “Speech, inking, & typing privacy settings” in the “Related settings” section. Then slide the switch to “On” in the “Online speech recognition” section. If you don’t have the sliding switch, this may appear as a button called “Turn on speech services and typing suggestions.”
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Best Online: Google Voice Typing
Google Docs includes many features, such as multi-user collaboration, add-on compatibility, and version history. However, the Web-based word processor also supports Google’s Voice Typing functionality, making it among the best online speech to text solutions available. All you need is a Google account, Chrome web browser, and a reliable Internet connection.
To get started with speech to text, open a document in , and select “Voice typing…” from the “Tools” menu. After allowing the browser to access your computer’s microphone, click the microphone box to start speaking, and Voice Typing will convert your words to text in real-time.
For best results, you must speak clearly, and at an average pace. Google Voice Typing allows dictation in many languages , and you can select one via the microphone box before you start speaking. All standard operations such as selecting or editing text, applying formats, or moving the cursor to a specified point in the document, can be done using voice commands.
Best Dictation Software For Typing In Google Docs
Google Docs includes a dictation feature that’s both highly accurate and easy to use, called but you have to be using Chrome to access this feature. Just go to Tools > Voice typing, and a microphone icon will appear on the left. Click on it, and start talking. If you’re idle for about 30 seconds, the microphone automatically stops. Click on it again to resume. You can use the same process to dictate speaker notes in a Slides presentation.
If you need help or you want a list of commands, click on the question mark within the microphone icon. Help will pop up on the right where you can scroll or search to find voice commands such as punctuation, text formatting, editing, and even moving around your document.
Google Docs voice typing price: Free
Google Docs voice typing accuracy: Out of 207 words dictated, nine words were incorrect, giving it a 96% accuracy. Most of the errors were for capitalizing words in the middle of sentences, such as untold, decline, and discovery.
Recommendation: If you’re a Google Docs power user and want dictation capability, voice typing is an excellent choice for its accuracy and many voice commands.
, which means you can automatically do things like save form entries to Google Docs, create new documents whenever something happens in your other apps, or create project management tasks for each new document.
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