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Microsoft Word on the Web Offer Voice to Text Transcription

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Posted in: Microsoft or Windows, Tech Tips, Word

We all know that Microsoft Word is a powerful program for creating legal documents, reports, memos and more. But did you know you can also use it to transcribe audio recordings? Before we get into the how-to there are a few must-haves you need.

First, it is only available for “Word on the web” – the web-based version of Microsoft Word that comes with a Microsoft 365 subscription. It is not available on the desktop app that you are likely most familiar with and using on a day-to-day basis.

Second, Transcribe only works on the new Microsoft Edge and Chrome browsers – not in Firefox, Safari or any other web browser.

Third, not all Microsoft 365 subscriptions come with the feature. You must be using a paid and premium subscription.

Screen capture showing Microsoft TranscribeYou’ll know you are in the right place with the right subscription if you see an arrow under the Dictation button on the Home ribbon of Word (remember, Word on the web only). When you click on that drop down you will see a transcribe option.

Before we go on, a quick answer to “what is voice to text transcription?” Voice to text transcription is a service that converts audio files into written word. This type of transcription can be done for both previously recorded audio (say from a Zoom meeting) and from live audio (talking into Microsoft Word with your computer’s microphone).

Finally, we are ready to get to the how-to! Once you’ve clicked on the Transcribe button, a pane or a pop up window will present itself. You will chose whether you want to upload an audio file or start recording and then follow the prompts that appear. If you are uploading an audio file with multiple participants, you will find that Microsoft is able to transcribe them separately with timestamp. If Microsoft Transcribe makes some errors in its work, you can easily edit the text to make corrections. Keep in mind that the transcription is only going to be as good as the recording is clear.

Visit this page from Microsoft for detailed instructions and a helpful video.

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