Dragon Dictate 2.0 Review

Updated April 30, 2013
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Dragon Dictate 2.0
Bottom Line Dragon Dictate 2.0 is from Nuance, maker of Dragon NaturallySpeaking software, and reviews indicate it's the best choice for Mac users. Nuance acquired MacSpeech Dictate in 2010. Tests say it's as accurate as Dragon NaturallySpeaking (about 98 percent in expert tests) and critics love the powerful command-creation macros, shortcuts that let you complete several actions at once. The "Golden Rule" of never mixing typed and verbal commands frustrates critics across the board, who report the software gets "lost" after manual corrections. Concerns are also noted about the vocabulary editor forgetting trained corrections, as well as Dictate's lightweight navigational command options out of the box. Many consumers call the program buggy and sluggish before sharing technical-support horror stories.ProsHigh degree of accuracy, Advanced verbal commands , Robust macro command-creationConsCan't mix typed and verbal commands, Forgetful vocabulary editor

Nate Anderson delivers the most comprehensive report in a review on ArsTechnica.com, putting the software through accuracy testing and trying out the features. David Pogue, a long-time voice recognition user, shares his notes about the software on his New York Times blog. SpeakeasySolutions.com compares Dragon Dictate to Dragon NaturallySpeaking, and Wired's Brad Moon discusses the software from a beginner's point of view. About 50 Amazon.com contributors weigh in on the current version.

Our Sources

1. Arstechnica.com

Dragon Dictate 2.0 for Mac: The Ars Review, Nate Anderson, Dec. 2010

Dragon Dictate's accuracy and deep dictionary impresses Ars Technica reviewer Nate Anderson, as does the software's macro-editing tools. However, he has big problems with the errors Dictate generates when mixing manual and verbal commands, and while he calls Dictate the best option for Mac users, he says people who have a Windows PC as well would be better served by Dragon NaturallySpeaking.

2. The New York Times

Finally, Professional Dictation Software for the Mac, David Pogue, Sept. 2010

David Pogue sprinkles small tidbits of comparative information throughout this excellent look at the Dragon Dictate software for the Mac. Pogue runs the software through the wringer and finds that Dictate's accuracy and speed is comparable to NaturallySpeaking's results on Windows computers. Pogue recommends the program to Mac users, with the caveat that small glitches and an inability to mix typed and verbal commands – the "Golden Rule" of Dictate – leaves it slightly inferior to NaturallySpeaking.

3. SpeakeasySolutions.com

Dragon (NaturallySpeaking Professional, Legal, Medical) for PC vs Dragon Dictate (MacSpeech Medical, Legal) for Mac, Speakeasy Solution Blog Editors, April 2011

Speakeasy Solution editors spend little time talking about Dragon Dictate's good points, instead focusing on the aspects they think that make Dictate a lesser program than NaturallySpeaking. Of particular note are Dictate's inferior vocabulary editor and the "Golden Rule" that prohibits users from mixing typed and verbal commands. He concludes that users of Dragon NaturallySpeaking could find themselves irritated by Dragon Dictate.

4. Wired

Review: Dragon Dictate 2.0 For Mac, Brad Moon, February 2011

Brad Moon is new to dictation software as of this review - and offers a beginner's perspective. As such, he spends more time describing the installation than actually testing the product. He finds the software accurate, but has a few complaints about usability.

5. Amazon.com

Dragon Dictate, Contributors to Amazon.com

About 50 user reviewers give Dragon Dictate an overall rating of just 3 out of 5 stars. While a significant number of users rate the software highly, the number of 1- or 2-star reviews slightly outnumber the 4- or 5-star reviews. The software's accuracy is generally held in high regard, but the "Golden Rule," sluggish response times and poor customer support have turned off many customers.