Nuance updates MacSpeech Dictate to Dragon branding

After purchasing MacSpeech in February, Nuance on Monday released a major upgrade of its Mac speech recognition softare, folding in the Dragon 11 engine and adding the Dragon brand.

After purchasing MacSpeech in February, Nuance on Monday released a major upgrade of its Mac speech recognition softare, folding in the Dragon 11 engine and adding the Dragon brand.

According to the company, the now-named $199.99 Dragon Dictate offers up to 99 percent recognition for dictation, "right out of the box," without training. The Mac software leverages Mac OS X's built-in text-to-speech capabilities for proofing the results of recognized dictation.

The company said that owners of MacSpeech Dictate customers as well as Dragon NaturallySpeaking customers will be able to upgrade to Dragon Dictate for Mac starting at $49.99 and $99.99, respectively, for a limited time. The software requires an Intel-based Mac, Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or greater. The retail package comes with a microphone headset.

The update adds new edition commands such as “Select text“, “Delete text“, “Train text“, “Correct text“, “Insert Before/After text“, “Capitalize text“ , “Lowercase text“ and “Uppercase text." In addition, a convenient command lets users select text which will then be put into quotes.

The Windows version of Dragon NaturallySpeaking was released on July 29, which is based on the new Dragon 11 engine.

Nuance also added a new way of controlling the cursor on the screen. Called MouseGrid, the command lets users target items on the screen.

Placement of the cursor can be accomplished with MouseGrid commands. Using numbered 3x3 grid sections onscreen, you can narrow down the placement of the mouse pointer, and then use a Mouse Click command. MouseGrid commands include: “MouseGrid”, “Small MouseGrid” (directly around mouse pointer),“1” through “9” to narrow down placement, and “Close MouseGrid” or “Cancel”.

There are also a range of new search-centric commands:

In addition to the powerful voice commands that MacSpeech Dictate 1.5 already offers for controlling popular Mac applications such as Safari, Mail, iCal and iChat, the new Dragon Dictate for Mac 2.0 adds more ways to interact with the Mac by voice:

• Dragon Voice Shortcuts for Search – Offers an easy way to search for information, files and content anywhere on your Mac or on the Web by using single voice commands. For example:

- “Search Google for hula dancing lessons”

- “Search Bing for wedding dress repair”

- “Search Yahoo for gondola rentals”

- “Search Mail for RSVP”

- “Search Mac for history term paper”

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