The Best Speech Recognition Software For Mac

The Best Speech Recognition Software For Mac Average ratng: 3,7/5 1681 reviews

You can use it to practice dictating before you invest in premium speech recognition software. To active speech recognition on a PC, open Control Panel, type speech into the search box and select Start Speech Recognition. I recommend using your computer’s speech-recognition software to explore the benefits of dictation before spending any money. 10 Best Voice Recognition Software in 2020 1. Dragon Naturally Speaking Image Source: Issuu. Developed by Nuance Communications, Dragon NaturallySpeaking is a fantastic voice recognition software for the Windows platform. It offers you the fastest and accurate way to convert your speech.

macOS Catalina introduces Voice Control, a new way to fully control your Mac entirely with your voice. Voice Control uses the Siri speech-recognition engine to improve on the Enhanced Dictation feature available in earlier versions of macOS.1

The Best Speech Recognition Software For Mac

How to turn on Voice Control

After upgrading to macOS Catalina, follow these steps to turn on Voice Control:

  1. Choose Apple menu  > System Preferences, then click Accessibility.
  2. Click Voice Control in the sidebar.
  3. Select Enable Voice Control. When you turn on Voice Control for the first time, your Mac completes a one-time download from Apple.2
    Voice Control preferences

When Voice Control is enabled, you see an onscreen microphone representing the mic selected in Voice Control preferences.

To pause Voice Control and stop it from from listening, say ”Go to sleep” or click Sleep. To resume Voice Control, say or click ”Wake up.”


How to use Voice Control

Get to know Voice Control by reviewing the list of voice commands available to you: Say “Show commands” or ”Show me what I can say.” The list varies based on context, and you may discover variations not listed. To make it easier to know whether Voice Control heard your phrase as a command, you can select ”Play sound when command is recognized” in Voice Control preferences.

Basic navigation

Voice Control recognizes the names of many apps, labels, controls, and other onscreen items, so you can navigate by combining those names with certain commands. Here are some examples:

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  • Open Pages: ”Open Pages.” Then create a new document: ”Click New Document.” Then choose one of the letter templates: 'Click Letter. Click Classic Letter.” Then save your document: ”Save document.”
  • Start a new message in Mail: ”Click New Message.” Then address it: ”John Appleseed.”
  • Turn on Dark Mode: ”Open System Preferences. Click General. Click Dark.” Then quit System Preferences: ”Quit System Preferences” or ”Close window.”
  • Restart your Mac: ”Click Apple menu. Click Restart” (or use the number overlay and say ”Click 8”).

You can also create your own voice commands.

Number overlays

Use number overlays to quickly interact with parts of the screen that Voice Control recognizes as clickable, such as menus, checkboxes, and buttons. To turn on number overlays, say ”Show numbers.” Then just say a number to click it.

Number overlays make it easy to interact with complex interfaces, such as web pages. For example, in your web browser you could say ”Search for Apple stores near me.” Then use the number overlay to choose one of the results: ”Show numbers. Click 64.” (If the name of the link is unique, you might also be able to click it without overlays by saying ”Click” and the name of the link.)

Voice Control automatically shows numbers in menus and wherever you need to distinguish between items that have the same name.

Grid overlays

Use grid overlays to interact with parts of the screen that don't have a control, or that Voice Control doesn't recognize as clickable.

Say “Show grid” to show a numbered grid on your screen, or ”Show window grid” to limit the grid to the active window. Say a grid number to subdivide that area of the grid, and repeat as needed to continue refining your selection.

To click the item behind a grid number, say ”Click” and the number. Or say ”Zoom” and the number to zoom in on that area of the grid, then automatically hide the grid. You can also use grid numbers to drag a selected item from one area of the grid to another: ”Drag 3 to 14.”

To hide grid numbers, say ”Hide numbers.” To hide both numbers and grid, say ”Hide grid.”


When the cursor is in a document, email message, text message, or other text field, you can dictate continuously. Dictation converts your spoken words into text.

  • To enter a punctuation mark, symbol, or emoji, just speak its name, such as ”question mark” or ”percent sign” or ”happy emoji.” These may vary by language or dialect.
  • To move around and select text, you can use commands like ”Move up two sentences” or ”Move forward one paragraph” or ”Select previous word” or ”Select next paragraph.”
  • To format text, try ”Bold that” or ”Capitalize that,” for example. Say ”numeral” to format your next phrase as a number.
  • To delete text, you can choose from many delete commands. For example, say “delete that” and Voice Control knows to delete what you just typed. Or say ”Delete all” to delete everything and start over.

Voice Control understands contextual cues, so you can seamlessly transition between text dictation and commands. For example, to dictate and then send a birthday greeting in Messages, you could say ”Happy Birthday. Click Send.” Or to replace a phrase, say ”Replace I’m almost there with I just arrived.”

You can also create your own vocabulary for use with dictation.

Create your own voice commands and vocabulary

Create your own voice commands

  1. Open Voice Control preferences, such as by saying ”Open Voice Control preferences.”
  2. Click Commands or say ”Click Commands.” The complete list of all commands opens.
  3. To add a new command, click the add button (+) or say ”Click add.” Then configure these options to define the command:
    • When I say: Enter the word or phrase that you want to be able to speak to perform the action.
    • While using: Choose whether your Mac performs the action only when you're using a particular app.
    • Perform: Choose the action to perform. You can open a Finder item, open a URL, paste text, paste data from the clipboard, press a keyboard shortcut, select a menu item, or run an Automator workflow.
  4. Use the checkboxes to turn commands on or off. You can also select a command to find out whether other phrases work with that command. For example, “Undo that” works with several phrases, including “Undo this” and “Scratch that.”

To quickly add a new command, you can say ”Make this speakable.” Voice Control will help you configure the new command based on the context. For example, if you speak this command while a menu item is selected, Voice Control helps you make a command for choosing that menu item.

Create your own dictation vocabulary

  1. Open Voice Control preferences, such as by saying ”Open Voice Control preferences.”
  2. Click Vocabulary, or say ”Click Vocabulary.”
  3. Click the add button (+) or say ”Click add.”
  4. Type a new word or phrase as you want it to be entered when spoken.

Learn more

  • For the best performance when using Voice Control with a Mac notebook computer and an external display, keep your notebook lid open or use an external microphone.
  • All audio processing for Voice Control happens on your device, so your personal data is always kept private.
  • Use Voice Control on your iPhone or iPod touch.
  • Learn more about accessibility features in Apple products.

1. Voice Control uses the Siri speech-recognition engine for U.S. English only. Other languages and dialects use the speech-recognition engine previously available with Enhanced Dictation.

2. If you're on a business or school network that uses a proxy server, Voice Control might not be able to download. Have your network administrator refer to the network ports used by Apple software products.

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In this post, we’ve compiled a list of 10 best voice recognition software, highlighting special features of each tool, and a quick comparison table laying out all the useful details and information.

But before we jump on that, let’s answer a few FAQ’s that will allow you the get a basic understanding of speech recognition tools.

What is Speech recognition software, and how does it work?

So, what exactly is a speech recognition software? In simple parlance, a speech recognition tool is used for converting our oral speech or anything you say in the form of words into a written text.

The objective of a voice recognition tool is to take the human voice as an input, process it to further break it down in the form of words, and then transcribe it in the form of text. The tool converts analog values into digital ones so that your device can understand whatever you spoke.

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What is voice recognition software used for?

Voice Recognizer software are used in various applications, whether you want to operate a device, perform dictation related tasks, or simply use it when you’re in no mood to type on the keyboard.

Apart from this, voice recognition tools prove out to be a great help to people with cognitive disabilities who face trouble with reading and writing. They can easily use such tools to get their work done using voice commands.

A Comparison Table

We hope this quick comparison table, including the top 10 speech recognition tools, will help you pick the best from the lot.

S. noVoice Recognition ToolCompatible PlatformPrice
1Dragon Naturally SpeakingWindowsPackages starting from 150$
2SpeechnotesWeb, Android, iOSFree
3Amazon LexApplication-basedUsage-based
5Voice FingerWindowsFull Version Available for 9.99$
6Speech TexterWeb, AndroidFree
7Braina ProWindows, iOS, AndroidPackages starting from 139$
9Apple DictationmacOSFree

Now, let’s learn about all about these-above-mentioned tools in a detailed manner.

10 Best Voice Recognition Software in 2020

1. Dragon Naturally Speaking

Developed by Nuance Communications, Dragon NaturallySpeaking is a fantastic voice recognition software for the Windows platform. It offers you the fastest and accurate way to convert your speech into textual format. The tool comes with an easy to use minimal designed interface that allows you to get more done to boost your productivity. You can easily create, edit, or format your texts with the help of your voice commands and be a master of dictation within no time.

2. Speechnotes

Speechnotes is an online speech to notes converter platform where you can easily dictate anything with your voice commands. Speechnotes happen to be one of the fastest and accurate speeches to text converter tool available online. If you’re looking for a free voice recognition software and not willing to invest in buying software, Speechnotes is an ideal pick. Using Speechnotes is super simple, just head on to its official website, tap the mic icon to begin. As soon as you start dictating, your speech will automatically be converted into text.

3. Amazon Lex

Amazon Lex is a powerful tool that converts your speech into a digital format. Powered by advanced deep learning functionalities, Amazon Lex offers an easy to use conversational interface that quickly understands your natural language. We’ve all heard of Alexa, right? So, Alexa is also one of Amazon Lex’s application that converts our voice commands to process our requests.

4. Siri

Yes, our very own Siri that comes pre-installed with all Apple devices. Siri is an ultimate example to understand the voice recognition process. We often use Siri to call someone, send a text on our behalf, to know about weather updates or current traffic conditions of your commute, setting up reminders, be it anything. Siri helps you in getting everything done in a hands-free mode, with your mere voice commands.

5. Voice Finger

Voice Finger is another speech recognition tool that allows you to take complete control over your mouse and keyboard. With the help of Voice Finger tool, you can operate your device with minimum or zero contact. People with reading and writing disabilities can take great use of this tool to get their tasks done and operate their system with full control.

6. Speech Texter

Speech Texter is another web app, just like Speechnotes that accurately converts your speech into text within no time. Speech Texter is an intuitive, professional application that can be of great use for bloggers, students, teachers, or anyone with cognitive disabilities. Using a voice recognition tool like Speech Texter can minimize your typing efforts significantly.

7. Braina Pro

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Powered with exceptional Artificial Intelligence skills, Braina is one powerful speech to text recognizer software. Braina can be your voice assistant that accurately converts your speech into text with minimal efforts. It comes with a simple, easy to use interface ideal for both beginners and professionals. Braina Pro’s recognition skills are flawless as it can easily convert multiple languages at once, and understand all types of accents in one go.

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8. e-Speaking

e-Speaking offers you a great way to interact with your PC with your voice commands. It features more than 100 built-in voice commands that you can put to best use. Not just this, you can also add your customized commands to this list for a seamless speech-to-text conversion experience. From dictating emails to documents to controlling your device, e-Speaking is ideal for everything.

9. Apple Dictation

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Apple Dictation can prove out to be one of the best voice recognition tools to use on your Mac. It easily converts your voice-to-text offering you full control to operate your Mac. Interacting with your Mac with your voice commands is a whole new magical experience. Type, edit or format documents, use it to control your device through voice commands, and get everything done in zero contact with the help of the Apple Dictation tool.

10. Cortana

Cortana is nonetheless but Windows’s delight that allows you to control your entire device through speech or voice commands. Cortana effortlessly tries to be your voice assistant for Windows, allowing you to achieve more with less effort. From playing your favorite music tracks to searching the web to maintaining your to-do lists, Cortana possesses exceptional speech recognizing skills.

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Download Speech Recognition Windows 10

This wraps our guide on 10 best voice recognition software that can boost your productivity on any virtual platform, including Windows, iOS, Android, or web. Do you think voice recognition tools make our lives a lot simpler? Feel free to share your insights in the comments space. We’d be more than happy to hear from you.