I take a lot of memos by recoding my voice using my Android smartphone. The recordings can be a quick note, or a long dictation, so they vary a lot in size. Depending on the app I use, I the audio is saved as either a WAV or MP3 file.

What I want to do is take these voice memos and dictations ans convert them into text files.

I found this method that theoretically uses pavucontrol to pipe audio playback into Google Chrome's voice to text API, but I can't get it to work. I've followed the instructions and don't get any errors, I just don't see any text appear in the Chrome interface. In any case, it's not much better than holding my phone up to my laptop microphone. I was hoping for something where I wouldn't necessarily have to hear the audio as it was being converted to text, as I might do this with my laptop while I'm out at a coffee shop or something.

Ideally, there would be software where I could load a batch of sound files, and it would output a batch of text files, one for each audio file.

Does any software or method for this exist on Ubuntu?

  • Haven't looked into this in awhile, but it seems like the best (read: usable) speech to text algorithms are proprietary or patented. Makes it hard to do on Linux. Sphinx cmusphinx.sourceforge.net started along this road, but seemingly got derailed. Dragon makes a recorder app for Android, but then it has to be input into their proprietary app on Windows. – Joe Aug 11 '16 at 7:18
  • The method mentioned in the question works, but Google apparently has put a very very short limit (I could get only 22 English words transcribed) to ensure it's only used for demo purposes. In that case, it seems a mobile phone + pc combination is all there is at the moment... – Sadi Dec 14 '17 at 10:25
  • Did you use Chromium or Google Chrome? I could get the pavucontrol method to work in Chrome, but not Chromium. – dgo.a Dec 16 '17 at 17:53
  • Does this answer your question? Speech-recognition app to convert MP3 to text? – karel Jan 5 '20 at 14:51

Try Mozilla DeepSpeech. It's opensource tool for automatic transcription. But you will need to train the tool. You can download Mozilla's pre-trained model, or use Mozilla's Voice DataSets to create your own model, and you can use it for recordings in English. For very clear recordings, the accuracy rate is relatively good. but for my transcription projects, it was still not sufficient, as the recordings had lots of background noises, they were not of good quality, I used Transcribear instead, it's web based editor that allows for automatic transcription, but you will need to be connected online to upload recordings to the Transcribear server.

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