Voice Recognition Software
What is Voice Recognition Software?
Voice recognition software uses AI to recognize and decode speech patterns. It enables your AI virtual assistant, smartphone, or computer to understand what you are saying and respond accordingly. The terms ‘voice recognition’ and ‘speech recognition’ are often used interchangeably. However, voice recognition can imply the additional ability to identify the speaker. This can be especially helpful in the context of reading transcripts of online meetings where multiple different people are talking.
Voice recognition is closely tied to Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) software, also known as Speech to Text (STT) software. Advanced ASR uses Natural Language Processing (NLP) capabilities combined with machine learning to produce high-quality results. Voice recognition and speech recognition work together in AI virtual assistant software to understand who is speaking and what they are saying.
Voice recognition supports biometric security authentication. Speech recognition supports accurate verbal command processing and rapid automatic transcriptions. This software can also convert text into speech. Some products can support real-time voice translation from one language into another.
Use Cases for Voice Recognition Software
This software is often used for real-time captioning by voice-based chatbots and language translators. It is an integral part of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems, which route incoming calls to the correct destination based upon customer voice instructions. Some products are specifically tailored toward the healthcare, legal, military, and writing professions.
These tools are invaluable for those who are visually, hearing, or cognitively impaired and cannot use a computer keyboard/mouse without assistive technology. They also contribute to public safety by creating hands-free environments in activities such as driving a car. Its voice command capabilities are increasingly popular and becoming an expected feature in IoT products.
Voice recognition software can be either speaker-dependent or speaker-independent. Speaker-dependent versions, used by smartphones and transcription applications, incorporate ‘training’ to adjust it to a speaker’s voice, producing a more accurate interpretation. Speaker-independent software is used by chatbots and conferencing tools to support multiple users.
Voice Recognition Software Features
Most voice recognition software products will include the following features:
Automatic playback for quality control
Command processing support
Speech to text
Speech to text analysis for quality control
Voice Recognition Software Comparison
Some things to consider before purchasing voice recognition software include:
Use case: How do you plan to use it? For example, do you need support for voice to text, text to voice, or voice to voice transcription? Will there be individual speakers or multiple users in conferences and meetings? Does the product need to be able to recognize voice commands? Will it be integrated with other functions and software applications?
Context: Will your business or organization benefit from a product designed for it? In other words, do you need voice recognition software that is designed to meet the needs of your industry?
Accuracy: What are your accuracy requirements? Automatic recognition is fast but not 100% accurate. For purposes requiring a high degree of accuracy, plan on having human quality control.
Many products are available as cloud-based web-based, and mobile implementations.
Pricing varies greatly depending upon whether it is based upon features, duration of use, the number of users, or the number of words.
Prices for basic products begin around $40 per user, per year. Other products can cost up to $95 a month per user. Pricing structures driven by usage (e.g. number of minutes used or words processed) start at a few cents per second or a few cents per word. Some products offer a free number of minutes before billing kicks in.
Vendors offering full-featured enterprise platforms will provide quotes after reviewing your requirements. Free trials are available and there are many free voice-to-text applications. Industry-specific products can be purchased for one-time licenses costing up to $2,000.
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IBM Watson Text to Speech is an API cloud service that enables users to convert written text into natural-sounding audio in a variety of languages and voices within an existing application or within Watson Assistant. It can be used to give a brand a voice and interact with users…
Frequently Asked Questions
There are several benefits associated with using voice recognition software:
- Faster, more efficient operations
- Increases productivity
- Lowers costs
- Automatically transcribes voice into text
- Supports command processing
- Enables voice biometric security – user verification
- Allows for hands-free work
- Empowers the physically challenged
- Streamlines language translation
- Reduces customer service workloads, increasing service capacity
Pricing is usually based on the range of features included and the number of users. Sometimes pricing is modeled around the duration of use, or the number of words processed. Pricing begins around $40 per user, per year up to $95 a month per user, per month.
Enterprise vendors require that you receive a quote for their products and services. Free trials and free versions are available.