Free voice transcription

Here's a cool new service: when you call Jott and leave a voice message, the service will transcribe your recording and deliver it to you via e-mail or SMS. The free tool recently entered public beta: first you must go to the Jott web site and register your phone number. Next, you can call the Jott phone number at 1-877-JOTT-IT-NOW (1-877-568-8486) and record a message. A little while later, you will receive a transcript of your message in your e-mail. In addition, the transcript and an MP3 of your recording are made available at the Jott web site.

Enough typing: I called Jott to speak the rest of this entry. Here's what they transcribed (transcription mistakes included):

Jott to self on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 12:22 PM

So, this part of the message I didn't type, I called Jott and dictated it. The good part is I don't have to type it. The bad part is I can only talk for about 15 seconds before I get cut off, so that could be a real imitation to preserve it.

However, when your time runs out it says you can create a new Jott by pressing 1 and then you have another 15 seconds to ladder on for with another idea or continue your log entry like I am doing here.

I am not sure how useful this would really be for creating for writing in a blog or say writing of school paper, however, for writing down for saving quick ideas that you had in a car when you don't have note paper around it could be just to think or probably add the Jott phone number.

So that I can save any business ideas that I might have. Now this is about the fourth Jott I have done in a row here, so in a little while hopefully I will get some E-mails by notes transcribed and may be little time in right order.

As you can see, the transcript isn't perfect. To be fair, the Jott FAQ states multiple times to speak slowly and clearly, which maybe I didn't do as well as I could have. The company is vague about who does the transcriptions, except to say that it's a combination of software and human transcriptionists. (My first guess was Mechanical Turk, but that doesn't seem to be how they're doing it.) The four pieces of my transcript, each the maximum 15 seconds in length, arrived in my inbox out of order, so this really isn't a tool for dictating your great American novel. But it could be great way to save fleeting ideas when you don't have a notepad handy. The service was fast — I recorded my 4-part message at 12:25 PM, and received the first transcribed part at 12:35. The rest of it was in my inbox by 12:42, less than 20 minutes from when I recorded it.

What do you think of Jott? What could you use it for? Post a comment.

8 Responses to “Free voice transcription”

  1. Jim Kukral Says:

    Why not just email yourself a note to remind yourself? Am I missing something? Seems harder to pick up a phone?

  2. Steve Loyola Says:

    Oh, Jim, you non-Californian. We do a lot of driving out here. The best way to mentally fight traffic (besides avoiding it) is to let your mind ponder more interesting things. I won’t say whether or not *I’ve* ever sent an email while driving but this Jott service would make leaving yourself a note much safer if you are driving.

    That said, I think I’d still prefer to just leave myself a voice mail reminder.

  3. Brian Clark Says:

    There are potentially some Twitter-like social media uses for it, though. Like Twitter-by-Voice almost.

    Nothing like 15 seconds to make you polish your sentences too, eh?

  4. dialtone Says:

    Jott has added access for Canadian users: (647) 724 5814. Plus several new features: sending Jotted messages to groups looks like an interesting one.

  5. Lindsay Kennedy Says:

    I think that the program is a great thing. But Jim when you’re driving down the freeway are you just going to pull out your labtop and just start typing away? Probably not so thats where this all comes in.

  6. Noel Says:

    I think it’s great that there is a safe alternative to texting while you are driving. Personally, I think text messaging is more fun, subtle in public places and easier to get “right” the first time, but the next time I’m in the car and want to send a text, I think I’ll give it a try.

  7. Dion Says:

    I just recently discovered Jott (more Canadian numbers are available now, which is great if your cell provider blocks your number when you call a toll-free number).

    I have tried leaving a voicemail for myself, but then I have to listen to the message, and likely write it down later.

    I have tried a voicemail-to-email service where my recording is simply emailed, but that required listening to an audio attachment

    I have tried Jott (which can now interface with Google calendar, and other services!), and I think I am hooked.

    When I’m driving, I have ideas, and I need to get those ideas out. Stopping to write them down is not always feasible. Texting them is definitely out, but calling Jott is easy:

    “Who do you want to Jott?” – Google calendar
    “Google calendar. Is this correct?” – Yes
    – Mike, tomorrow at 1pm
    “Got it”

    Then I hangup.


    “Who do you want to Jott?” – me

    Grocery list. Eggs, milk, paper towel.
    “Got it”

    Then I hang up.

    I don’t think I will forgot anything while driving again!

  8. bill Says:

    I use jott, and it is cool. I have aded jott links, whitch may send jott messages to google calender wordpress(this blog’s platform) etc. hey busy signel, I found your site on aol search and would like the email your account is atached to so I can give you editer access on my blog and share maby top 5 fun numbers, information lines etc.

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