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Dictation for Professionals (voice recording for transcription by a secretary or service) - A Guide


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  1. SoonerLater

    SoonerLater Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I am posting this for the benefit of professionals who need to be able to dictate to an Android device for transcription by a secretary or online service.

    After looking at every recording/dictation app in the Marketplace, I grudgingly concluded that the free SpeakWrite app is the best available (as of July 2010), but it has several limitations when compared to Dictamus for iPhone. SpeakWrite is the only Android app I can fiind that will permit you to pause and resume dictation; rewind and insert, which are all critical to using the app "as a Dictafone." Unfortunately, out of the box SpeakWrite will only upload to its own service, or email to an address of your choosing. But I found a way around.

    1. Get a dropbox.com account if you don't already have one and install the Dropbox app on your droid (both are free).
    2. Install the Astro file manager.
    3. Install SpeakWrite

    Speakwrite will save its files to \\sdcard\speakwrite. The recordings are 3GP.

    After dictating a job, open the dropbox app and browse to the dropbox folder where you want your dictation to be uploaded. Press the droid menu button, then select upload.

    When prompted, select "any file." This will popup another menu which will let you choose Astro.

    Use Astro to navigate to \\sdcard\speakwrite. Find the 3GP file you dictate. You will NOT need the companion JOB file if your secretary is going to transcribe this recording.

    I assume that if you've read this far, you've been using dictation for years and only need to do it on the Droid, so your secretary's computer is probably already setup for this. However, if not, you will need to buy a USB foot pedal (about $50) and install the free NCH ExpressScribe app.

    Dropbox includes an RSS feature. If you setup an RSS reader on her pc, she will be notified when you upload new dictation.

    Dictamus does all this and more automatically. I've exchanged emails with its developers and they say that they have absolutely no plans to develop Dictamus for Android, which makes me very sad. If Dictamus is a 10 on a 10 point scale, then in my estimation, SpeakWrite is a 2 and everything else in the Market is a 1 or 0. What I have described above is no the ideal method for a busy professional. With Dictamus, you dictate, hit save and eveything else is automatic. It will upload to Dropbox or an FTP site or an online transcription service like SpeakWrite, YouDictate, etc. or send via email. It's very slick. So slick I might almost switch to iPhone just to have it. But in the meantime, the above will be my system.
     

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  2. SoonerLater

    SoonerLater Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Boris,

    It's a good first effort, but saving in WAV is a problem. If you can't record in MP3 (or M4A, AAC, etc.), then you at least need to offer the option of automatic post-processing conversion to a compressed format before uploading. A five minute dictation file in WAV is huge compared to an MP3 or other compressed format. I don't want to waste bandwidth or time uploading a file that is 20x larger than it needs to be.

    Gray
     
  3. SoonerLater

    SoonerLater Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Boris,

    Another shortcoming is that it's not using my A2DP Bluetooth headset as the mic input, although it does use it for playback. There's no option to use bluetooth mic. That's a problem, because I like to dictate while driving, but don't want to have to hold the phone the entire time.

    Gray
     
  4. bestulin

    bestulin Member

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    Thanks for the feedback. I just want to point out that Dictadroid allows for recordings in WAV format at sampling rates as low as 8 kHz, which is perfectly suitable for voice. At this sampling rate, a 5 minute recording will be approximately 5M. While that is larger than an MP3 counterpart, I don't believe the difference is 20x.

    Boris
     
  5. mweisslaw

    mweisslaw New Member

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    I just downloaded Dictadroid. I gave a quick try and it seems promising. I have been looking for a dictation app for the Atrix. I switched from an iPhone 4 and the only app that I have really felt that was missing in the Android market was a really good dictation app. Dictamus for the iPhone is simply amazing and the best there is. I do a fair amount of dictation and then send the dictation to my legal assistant to transcribe. I am hopeful that Dicatdroid will fill that missing app for me. I will keep all posted as I use it. I have not found any other android app that can hold a candle to Dictamus so hope springs eternal.
     
  6. no8wire

    no8wire New Member

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    Hi Boris

    I paid and downloaded the full version as opposed to the 'lite', and my recording limit is only 5 minutes. I thought this was only the for the 'lite' version. As such, it has severe limitations.
     
  7. bestulin

    bestulin Member

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    no8wire,

    Please go to Settings and change the "Recording Capacity" from 5 minutes to "Unlimited" (or another value that you prefer).

    You can also refer to the User Guide that is available at https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&...WUtYzBkZi00ZTc5LThkYTgtNDExYTNiZWI4NmQz&hl=en

    Thanks for downloading Dictadroid,

    Boris
     

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