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Nuance Launches Dragon Dictate For Mac 2.0

Voice command capabilities allow users to create and edit documents, control Mac OS X and Mac apps and search online, local files and email by voice.
Nuance Communications has launched version 2.0 of its Dragon Dictate for Mac speech recognition program. The release offers Mac users the new speech recognition speed and capabilities available to Windows users in version 11 of Nuance Dragon NaturallySpeaking combined with the familiar user interface and other features of MacSpeech Dictate, according to the company.

Dragon Dictate for Mac 2.0 is the Nuance's first major desktop speech recognition product for Mac OS X since Nuance acquired MacSpeech and its MacSpeech Dictate -- for which MacSpeech had licensed underlying Dragon dictation technology -- iListen, and other products earlier this year.

Nuance speech recognition products for other platforms include Dragon NaturallySpeaking, for which Nuance released version 11 in July. According to Nuance, Dragon Dictate for Mac 2.0 is an update from MacSpeech Dictate 1.5, as well as incorporating other Nuance technology plus new features.

Like Dragon NaturallySpeaking on Windows, Dragon Dictate for Mac is intended for voice-based activities including creating both text entry and voice control. Nuance also offers MacSpeech Scribe, which is intended just for personal transcription, producing text from recorded audio. Uses for Dragon Dictate for Mac include creating and editing documents, writing email, navigating the desktop, conducting web searches and interacting with applications. For example, a Mac user can now voice-initiate a web search.

According to Peter Mahoney, senior vice president and general manager for Dragon at Nuance, Dragon Dictate for Mac version 2.0, improves on the accuracy and performance of MacSpeech Dictate 1.5, leveraging the new Dragon 11 engine (used in Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 for the PC).

"We set out earlier this year to bring Dragon to the Mac, working closely with our experts from the MacSpeech team," says Mahoney. "We've maintained the elements of Dictate that are most important to our Mac customers, such as the native Mac interface, and we have integrated many features of Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11."

Other new features in Dragon Dictate for Mac 2.0, according to Nuance, include:

-- New voice commands for dictation, editing, navigation and proofreading. For example, users can select and delete text, insert new text, capitalize text, and perform proofreading by taking advantage of Mac OS X built-in Text-to-Speech capabilities, let Dragon Dictate read text back to the user

-- More streamlined set-up (compared to MacSpeech Dictate 1.5 and prior versions)

-- Faster response to spoken commands

-- More ways to interact with the Mac by voice in addition to the ones that in MacSpeech Dictate 1.5 already offers for controlling popular Mac applications such as Safari, Mail, iCal and iChat

-- Voice Navigation lets Dragon Dictate for Mac users control the Mac's cursor and mouse actions by voice

Dragon Dictate for Mac is available immediately starting at $199.99. Existing MacSpeech Dictate customers and Dragon NaturallySpeaking customers can purchase Dragon Dictate for Mac starting at $49.99 and $99.99 respectively for a limited time. Volume licensing is also available.

Dragon Dictate for Mac requires an Intel-based Mac, Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or greater (2GB RAM recommended). Dragon Dictate for Mac comes complete with a Nuance-approved USB microphone headset.