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10 best dictation apps for Android to transcribe audio to text
Dictation is a niche, but important function. After all, your voice is a lot faster than typing pretty much all the time. Your mobile is perfect for this. Traditionally, most people use computers for this sort of thing. However, even the thinnest, lightest laptop is still rather unwieldy compared to your phone. Thus, it makes a lot of sense to find audio-to-text converters on it instead of relying on old tech. The good news is that there are plenty of options, including some really good ones. Here are the best dictation apps for Android.
We’d also like to give an honorable mention to Dragon Anywhere (Google Play). The app boasts professional-grade dictation. A lot of people trust and use the service on PC. However, we think the app needs a bit more work before we put it on the full list.
The best dictation apps for Android
Gboard (or most keyboards)
Gboard is a pretty good choice for voice dictation. It has a mic icon that you press. From there, just speak your sentences, and the app types it out. You can do this in a variety of apps, including note-taking apps, emails, or other text documents. We list Gboard because it uses Google’s speech-to-text technology. It works pretty well overall. However, most keyboards have a mic option that also works. It’s a good method for voice dictation because you can use your keyboard in almost any app.
Google Keep is another good solution for dictation. You do need a keyboard with the functionality as well, though. The charm of Keep is that it keeps your audio file saved while your keyboard types out the transcription as you talk. You wind up with both the original audio file and also the transcription. It’s a great tool for this sort of thing as many people use dictation for notes for the most part. Google Keep is a free option. Those looking for something a bit more professional can try Evernote as well.
Google Translate is a good option for dictation. You can easily and quickly translate between a bunch of languages, including up to 59 offline. You can then copy and paste the translations wherever you want. It’s a great option for interviews where there is a multilingual element. Every translation stays on screen until you clear it. It can be a little tedious if you need to do a lot of translating, but it gets the job done.
Google’s Live Transcribe is an excellent way to transcribe things. You simply talk into it and the app puts your voice into text. It has a variety of features, mostly for accessibility. That’s what the app is for after all. However, it does save every transcription for three days on your phone. While it’s there, you can copy and paste it to the note-taking or text document app of your choice. It may not work for super long applications, but otherwise, it works surprisingly well.
Microsoft Translate is one of the better dictation apps for the same reason as Google Translate. You can conduct things like interviews and get translations if the answers are in a different language from yours. The app boasts 70 languages, a two-pane mode in case both speakers need translation, and you can copy and paste stuff from the app into another one for future reference. Google Translate is the better option, but this is a good second option if Google isn’t doing it for you.
Price: Free / $9.99 per month
Otter is one of the most popular dictation apps on mobile right now. It’s technically a voice recorder app. You record voice audio whether it be a work meeting or a school lecture. The app then gives you the option to listen and transcribe the audio. The free version of the app supports 600 minutes per month for free. Anything more serious and you need the subscription. There are also a bunch of other features, like collaboration features, the ability to identify speakers, and more. This is easily one of the best on mobile and one of the ones we’d recommend first.
Price: Free / $0.99 per month / $7.99 once
Speechnotes is an older option, but it still works decently well. This one is good for longer dictation. It boasts unlimited, non-stop dictation until you fill up your phone storage. Some other features include Google Drive backup, offline support, and controls for punctuation. There is also a home screen widget if you need it. The app has its ups and downs, a result of being around for so long. It’s also reasonably cheap with options for both a single and subscription price tier.
SpeechTexter is one of the better free dictation apps. It’s pretty simple to use. You simply open the app, hit the mic button, and start talking. This one supports more than 70 languages, decent accuracy, a custom commands dictionary, and you can share transcriptions if you need to. There aren’t a ton of features, but it is entirely free (with ad support) so it’s unreasonable to think it’ll compete with more expensive dictation apps. It still works well, even if its a bit anemic on features.
Ultimate Speech To Text
Ultimate Speech To Text is a bit of a diamond in the rough. It’s not the most popular dictation app on the list and it seems to be reasonably new. Plus, the English translation in the app isn’t the best. Luckily, the app seems to work pretty well. I read the entire Google Play description through the app and it didn’t miss anything. The app includes share and export options, a dark mode, and some extra controls to make it all work. I might not use this for super important stuff, but it should work well enough to dictate some notes on occasion.
There are a number of free services online that can dictate and transcribe voice audio. Some examples include Dictanote, Speechnotes, Dictandu, and several others. The services are usually free, at least to an extent, and you can access them from your mobile browser. Your browser needs mic permission, though, so be prepared for that. During testing, it seems most of them need Google Chrome to function properly so you’ll most likely need Chrome to make this solution work.
If we missed any great dictation apps to transcribe audio to text, tell us about them in the comments. You can also click here to check out our latest Android app and game lists.
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