Mobile Technology

Smart audio recorder leverages AI to auto transcribe recordings

Smart audio recorder leverages...
Mobvoi reports a transcription accuracy rate of 94 percent
Mobvoi reports a transcription accuracy rate of 94 percent
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The AI Recorder comes with an integrated clip
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The AI Recorder comes with an integrated clip
Mobvoi reports a transcription accuracy rate of 94 percent
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Mobvoi reports a transcription accuracy rate of 94 percent
The AI Recorder has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and a battery that's good for 10 hours of use or 40 days on standby
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The AI Recorder has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and a battery that's good for 10 hours of use or 40 days on standby
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Beijing-based Mobvoi – the wearable tech company behind the TicWatch line of smartwatches – has launched a digital dictation machine called the AI Recorder that taps into artificial intelligence to automatically transcribe audio, making it a useful addition to the travel bag of journalists, students and business folk.

Though many of us will likely use the recording capabilities of smartphones these days, dictation machines have been around in one form or another for over a century. But once an interview, lecture or conference speech has been captured to your device of choice, the laborious and monotonous task of transcribing that recording begins.

Relatively recently, software has been developed to transcribe human speech of audio and video files, and now Mobvoi has tapped artificial intelligence for a dedicated dictation machine called the AI Recorder that converts audio to text automatically.

The handy device weighs in at just 20 g (0.7 oz) and features an integrated clip, magnetic surface and a hanging hole for mounting flexibility. It captures audio to 16 GB of internal storage via dual microphones, which are said to work with a noise-reduction algorithm to significantly reduce background noise. Files are saved in OGG or MP3 format.

The AI Recorder comes with an integrated clip
The AI Recorder comes with an integrated clip

The AI Recorder comes with a year's free subscription to an audio-to-text transcription service that supports English and Mandarin Chinese at the moment, but additional languages will be added over time. Mobvoi says that using an AI-powered transcription approach results in an accuracy rate of 94 percent, with a summary, keywords and paragraphs automatically generated too.

The device supports wireless transfer of files to a laptop, computer or phone over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and can serve as a local hotspot to enable data transfer where there's no internet connection. An hour of audio is reckoned to take just a minute to send over Wi-Fi. Meanwhile, the 300-mAh battery is reported good for up to 40 days on standby or 10 hours of recording time.

The AI Recorder is available now for US$99.99, which includes 200 hours worth of free cloud storage, and 12 months access to the audio-to-text transcription service (which will then cost $69.99 per year).

Product page: AI Recorder

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3 comments
3 comments
paul314
I'm sure no one is worried about having whatever they're dictating shipped across the world to servers of unknown security status. (Which is too bad, because the basic idea and architecture seem pretty wonderful.)
Tristan P
I wonder if this is using AWS Rekognition in the background as it's transcription AI engine.
ljaques
Has anyone here in the Western world bought one and reverse engineered it, as China does to all of our products and software? Wouldn't that be a hoot?