Top 15 Video and Audio Transcription Tools for Data Annotation

Article by Daniel Smith | May 03, 2019

Speech-to-text annotation is an integral part of many natural language processing algorithms, particularly when it comes to customer service assistants. However, it can be difficult to find software that makes the process of annotating your data easier.

The solutions outlined below will help to improve your transcription workflow – or even outsource it entirely. If you have other annotation needs, be sure to check out our other collections of software, such as the best image annotation tools.


Best Audio Transcription Tools

Transcribe: This software includes a tightly integrated audio player and word processor. It’s designed to streamline the transcription process, removing as much of the switching back and forth between audio file and text as possible. It also has voice recognition capabilities which allow you to dictate if you prefer.

Express Scribe: Popular with freelance transcribers, Express Scribe’s software is known for its audio player, good user interface, and compatible keyboard hotkeys. It can also be used for video.

oTranscribe: This is a free app designed to make the process of transcribing easier. It allows you to add both video and audio and has a range of export options, while also ensuring that your data never leaves your computer.

Subtitle Edit: Primarily used for video, this free software has a range of features for creating and adjusting subtitles. It’s particularly useful for those with timestamped transcription needs.

InqScribe: This transcription tool allows the user to play their recordings and type their transcripts in the same window, while also containing a range of useful shortcuts. It’s also compatible with data in a range of formats.

IntraScript: An independent software solution developed for medical transcription, IntraScript incorporates a range of speech recognition features that make it easy to dictate, review, and edit your data.

Dragon Speech Recognition: A slightly different solution to the transcription problem is Dragon’s speech recognition software. Through this software, it’s possible to automatically transcribe audio and remove the bulk of the necessary typing. Just remember to check for punctuation and errors before you export!

Audiotranskription: The f4transkript tool can adjust audio to the transcriber’s typing speed. It also automatically inserts timestamps and marks speaker change in dialogues.

The FTW Transcriber: This software also provides its users with the option of automatic timestamps. It can also play files on local drives or remote servers without requiring a download.

Happy Scribe: Using voice recognition technology, Happy Scribe can turn speech into text for a variety of audio and video formats. It’s also possible to edit the resulting transcription after the technology has done its work.


Best Audio Transcription Services

While speeding up the transcription process is a worthwhile endeavor, it’s often possible to achieve a greater ROI by outsourcing it entirely. By doing this, you gain access to expert annotators, while freeing up your team to perform other important tasks. If you’re considering speech-to-text annotation, it’s worth checking out the services below to see if they are more cost effective for you.

Lionbridge AI: With access to over 500,000 annotators, Lionbridge’s platform has the scale and diversity to improve any project, no matter how specific its needs. By sending data directly to professional linguists, they provide best-in-class annotation services in 300+ languages.

Appen: Offering both speech-to-text transcription and secure transcription, Appen use crowdsourcing to annotate audio and video. Their service is available for a range of industries and languages.

Figure Eight: This human-in-the-loop platform provides its customers with transcription services through a globally distributed contributor base. They have multiple processes embedded into their workflow to ensure accuracy and quality.

Amazon Mechanical Turk: Also referred to as MTurk, Amazon’s service uses crowdsourcing to complete a wide variety of tasks. By breaking your task down into segments, their workers can finish your transcription quickly. However, be aware when ordering that these workers may not be professional linguists.

TranscribeMe: This service is good for a variety of transcription and speech-to-text annotation services. They offer fast and accurate transcription at a low price for a range of industries.


Still can’t find what you need? Lionbridge’s global crowd of linguists have the expertise to meet your transcription needs. Whatever your specialist requirements, we can build out a workflow that suits you. Across 300+ languages and a huge range of industries, we can ensure that you receive high-quality data at a competitive price. Contact us to find out more.

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The Author
Daniel Smith

Daniel writes a variety of content for Lionbridge’s website as part of the marketing team. Born and raised in the UK, he first came to Japan by chance in 2013 and is continually surprised that no one has thrown him out yet. Outside of Lionbridge, he loves to travel, take photos and listen to music that his neighbors really, really hate.


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