A few really interesting iPhone apps were recently released that could prove very useful to lawyers, each incorporating speech to text dictation into their platforms in various ways.
The first, and my personal favorite, is Siri. Siri is a free iPhone app designed to be your personal assistant. The app provides a wide range of information, from the local weather, nearby restaurants, movie listings and times, to details about local events. You can even check a flight’s status or book a taxi. Simply speak into your iPhone or use Siri’s intuitive interface to type in your requests.
In addition to providing the specific information, such as an address or the start time of a movie, Siri provides an assortment of ratings and reviews from a number of websites, thus making it easier for you to choose a restaurant or movie. And for attorneys who tweet–Siri just added a new feature that allows you to send a status update to Twitter by dictating it into your phone.
If you’re in the market for a basic speech to text dictation tool that works quite well, the free Dragon Dictation app is for you. Simply speak into the phone and your words are instantly transcribed. The text is fully editable with the additional functionality of “copying” to a clipboard, text message or into an email.
Finally, Vlingo is another voice command app worthy of note. Using the free version of Vlingo, you can tell the app to search Google maps, update your Facebook or Twitter statuses, search the Web, or initiate a phone call to one of your contacts.
Using the paid versions of Vlingo you can dictate an email or text message. However, Vlingo goes one step further than the Dragon Dictation app and allows you to dictate not only the content of the message, but also the name of the contact, and if it’s an email, the subject of the email. The SMS and email features cost $6.99 apiece or you can purchase both for $9.99.
All 3 of these apps are must-haves for busy attorneys. Each has the potential to transform your iPhone into an information gathering and transmitting voice command center. Imagine the possibilities!