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machine vs automated transcription
October 14, 2019 Transcription Services

Machine vs. Human Transcription: Which is the Best Method?

Does this sound familiar?

You’re driving to an important meeting, and you’re not entirely sure how to get there. Not wanting to take your eyes off the road, you call out, “Hey Siri! How do I get to XYZ headquarters?” Instead of receiving precise directions to your destination, your cell phone responds, “Calling Mom.”

That’s definitely not what you just said.

Although we’re currently in an age of smart speakers and AI (Artificial Intelligence) assistants, many individuals are under the impression that a machine can completely understand the human dialect. And although computers have gotten better at understanding us, when it comes to transcribing audio, it’s still better to have a human transcribe your project, rather than an automated service.

Don’t believe us? Let’s compare the two services, and you can make the choice.

Human vs. Machine Transcriptions: Who Comes Out on Top?

Speed: If speed is more important to you than accuracy, then automated transcription services are the way to go. Tools like Scribie, Trint, and AWS Transcribe can convert speech into text in record time. A video that is approximately two hours long can take less than 30 minutes to transcribe. But, remember what you lose with this much speed, and that is accuracy.

Human Speech: No matter how smart a machine is, it doesn’t understand the intricacies of human speech. All you need is some background noise, and if your project includes technical or scientific terms, don’t expect the machine to understand those terms. Instead of a completely accurate transcript in less than 30 minutes, you’ll have a jumbled mess of words that you’ll have to sort out. It’s probably easier just to do it yourself!

Separate Speakers: Sure, some automated transcription services claim to be able to pick up and discern different speakers. But that’s not always the case, especially if there are more than two speakers. But humans can determine the distinct vocals of each person speaking, making the transcription significantly more accurate.

Recording Issues: Not every recording can happen in a vacuum. The real world can invade your audio, causing background noises or volume issues. These distractions can make it challenging to understand the speakers, which confuses the machine, and leads to an inaccurate transcription or even a complete rejection of the audio file. The same can be said for muffled speaking or someone with a strong accent – after all, not everyone naturally speaks in clear, precise phrases!

Always Choose the Human Over the Machine

At FFTranscription, our team of transcription professionals will provide you with accurate, secure, and professional transcripts for every industry. Whether it’s for the medical sector, market research, or legal transcription, we can handle all of your transcription needs. Since 2003, we have successfully transcribed over 25 million minutes for our happy clients, and we’re ready to help you.

Contact FFTranscription today for your transcription needs, and let us worry about the details so you can Focus Forward!