Transcribing Voice Memos To Text: An Easy Way To Convert Recorded Speech

For many, voice memos are the quickest way to capture important information or discussions. They’re becoming so popular that over 7 billion voice messages are sent daily on WhatsApp alone. However, utilization comes with challenges, especially when voice memos pile up. They can be difficult to track, organize, or analyze. They can be lost in the audio folders with hundreds of similar files or hard to interpret due to poor recording quality.

A professional transcription service that transcribes your voice memos to text solves all of these problems. 

In this article, you’ll learn:

  • Voice memos are a versatile tool for capturing ideas, lectures, reminders, and conversations, but transcribing them into text enhances their organization, searchability, and usefulness.
  • Transcribing voice memos benefits visual learners, improves accessibility for deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals, and allows easier editing and integration with other productivity tools.
  • Although automated transcription services are faster and cheaper, they may not provide the accuracy for crucial voice memos in legal, medical, or business contexts.

What Is A Voice Memo?

A voice memo is a short recording—a voice note or audio message—usually created using a phone or a computer. It’s a way for people to record or perhaps send messages like leaving a voicemail. These short recordings are often used in applications like WhatsApp, Telegram, or Messenger—any messaging apps.

For the average person, voice memos can be quite helpful when conveying long or emotional messages—as reported by 52% of messaging app users—or when adding personal touches to communication.

However, for people like researchers, these voice memos are typically used to record crucial details, which can then be shared with others or saved for later reference.

Most Common Uses Of Voice Memos

Voice memos can be useful in many situations. However, below are some of the most common ones.

Capture IdeasNever lose a fleeting thought or brainstorming session by recording it on the go.
Remember LecturesDitch the frantic note-taking and record every detail of a lecture or meeting for later review.
Set Voice RemindersMake reminders more engaging and personal by speaking them instead of typing.
Easy Note-TakingCapture information with your voice in situations where typing is inconvenient or impossible.
Record ConversationsEasily record interviews, conversations, or important discussions for future reference.
Practice PresentationsRefine your public speaking skills by recording yourself practicing and identifying areas for improvement.
Dictate TextSkip typing and easily transcribe notes, emails, or documents with voice dictation.
Enhance CreativitySpark new ideas and explore thoughts more freely by talking them through and recording them for later review.

Common Ways To Record Voice Memos

Now that we understand how voice memos are commonly used, let’s move to the other side and discuss how you can record your voice memos. 

iOS or iPhone Voice Memos

For iOS users, Voice Memos is the best bet. It’s a built-in application for most iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch models. It has a user-friendly interface, and the best part is the iCloud integration, which makes it easy to share, download, or export voice memos with all of your Apple devices. 

Moreover, the application has basic editing features like trimming audio, deleting sections, or organizing them into folders that can be easily accessed later on—super handy.

To get started on saving voice memos, locate your Voice Memo app, then:

  1. Position your phone about six inches away from your mouth at a slight angle. 
  2. Tap the Record button (red circular button) to start recording. An orange dot will appear at the top of your screen to indicate that the app is recording. 
  3. Record the voice memo, then press Stop Recording (red square button) when done. 
  4. Review the voice memo and make edits if necessary. 

Android Audio Recorder

Android devices also come with a pre-installed audio recording application, although the exact name of the application may vary depending on the brand or the device’s Android version.

Much like iOS’ Voice Memos, this application allows people to record voice memos using the device’s microphone. Some versions offer basic features like editing and adding notes.

To record using the Android audio recorder, follow these steps: 

  1. Locate the Audio Recorder app on your phone. 
  2. Position your phone about six inches away from your mouth at a slight angle. 
  3. Press the Record button (red button) when ready to record. 
  4. Record the voice memo.
  5. Press Stop when done (red button at the lower-left side of the screen) and save your memo using a unique file name. 
  6. Expand the … button to share through your chosen messaging or email app. 

Android’s audio recorder can also be integrated with Google Drive—it’s not integrated by default—allowing people to back up their recordings to the cloud and access them from other devices.

Mobile Transcription With Human Accuracy

There’s another option for those looking to get the convenience of a mobile transcription app and the accuracy of a human-powered transcription provider. We’ve partnered with Webshuttle Dictate to offer real-time recording of any business meeting, patient checkup, hearing, or police interview. You can download the app through the iOS App Store or Google Play.

Webshuttle doesn’t work like the usual apps; you can dictate and send your recording straight to us through secure cloud-based servers. 

From there, our human transcriptionists can access the recordings, create the transcripts, and notify you once the audio transcription is complete. You can then view your completed transcripts or add electronic signatures if required. 

The app works best with an internet connection, but there’s no need to fret if you are temporarily out of range. Any recordings made offline are saved locally and uploaded when your device connects to a network. 

webshuttle dictate is Ditto's mobile transcription app

Tips To Improve Voice Memo Recording

It’s in your best interest to improve the quality of your voice memos, regardless of whether you want them transcribed. So, here are the best tips to enhance recording quality from professionals: 

  • Use an external microphone and pop filter whenever appropriate
  • Find a quiet environment to record
  • Speak clearly and don’t rush
  • Hold the microphone about six inches away at a slight angle to avoid “b” and “p” pops
  • Select the right recording settings (not available on all apps) 
  • Test and adjust as necessary
  • Edit your recordings 

Benefits Of Transcribing Voice Memos

Let’s discuss the benefits of transcribing these voice recordings. 

Better Searchability

Transcribing voice memos into text will make it much easier to find specific information within the content—this is also a general benefit for every transcribed document. Those unaware of transcription may listen to the entire recording to locate a particular point, eating up time better spent on more important things. 

Now, once you have transcripts of your voice memos, you can easily search for keywords or phrases within the transcribed document. This is especially helpful for those dealing with several or lengthy voice memos. You can already imagine the compounded time and effort you will save in the long run if you start transcribing your important voice memos.

Better Organization And Collaboration

Transcribing voice memos will make it easier to organize your recordings. When you have transcripts of your memos, you can organize them into folders, label them with tags, or categorize them by topic, depending on your preferences. This way, you can quickly find the information you need without listening to multiple recordings.

For example, if you have a collection of voice memos about a specific project, you can create a folder and put all the relevant transcriptions there. Later, when you refer to a particular note, you can search for it within that folder. 

This type of data organization can immensely help team dynamics in professional settings, making it easier for team members to get the necessary information as quickly and painlessly as possible. 

Enhanced Comprehension

Many people understand and remember information better by reading it than by hearing it. This is especially true for visual learners like me, who process information more effectively when they see it written.

Now, transcribing your voice memos creates an alternative way to engage with the content. It allows visual learners to review the content at their own pace or when needed. Moreover, they can highlight important sections, make notes in the margins, and take time to absorb the material. 

If you think about it, this is particularly useful when someone’s learning something new. A written version of voice memos could lead to a better overall understanding of a topic for whoever reads it. 

Increased Accessibility

Providing a written version of your audio content allows individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to benefit from the information you’re sharing. This is particularly important for businesses or organizations that strive to create content that resonates with various audiences. 

Once you make your voice memos accessible through transcription, you’re not only complying with accessibility guidelines but also building a sense of inclusivity within your audience.

Smoother Editing

Editing or repurposing the content with a voice memo transcription is much easier. If you need to change the information, you can simply edit the text instead of re-recording the entire voice memo, saving time and allowing you to be precise.

Similarly, if you want to combine information from multiple voice memos into a single document, you can copy and paste the section you’re looking for from each transcription. If you can smoothly edit or perhaps repurpose your content without a limit, it can open new possibilities for creating professional documents.

Integration With Other Tools

I can say this from experience: one of the best things about transcribing your voice memos is that you can easily integrate the content into your existing workflow or tools. Several productivity apps will allow you to import and work with text-based content. 

For example, you can copy and paste your voice memo transcripts directly into your notes using a note-taking app like Evernote or Google Keep. Doing this will allow you to keep all your information in one place and easily search for details across all your notes and transcriptions.

In the same scenario, if you use a project management tool like Trello or Asana, you can attach the transcriptions to tasks or projects, making it easy for your team to access what they need.

Multilingual Support

Transcribing voice memos can help break down language barriers and make your content accessible globally. Many transcription services offer the option to translate your voice memo content into different languages, allowing you to reach people who don’t speak your language.

This benefit is especially useful for businesses or organizations operating in multiple countries or with diverse customer bases. Moreover, if you’re learning a new language, transcribing your voice memos—and translating—can be a valuable study aid.

Data Analysis

Although it may not be common, transcribing your voice memos can facilitate data analysis. You can use tools to identify patterns, extract themes, and better understand the content.

For instance, if you have a collection of voice memos from customer feedback, you can use sentiment analysis tools to understand the overall intent behind the input. This way, you spot areas where your business is doing well and where you need to improve.

On the other hand, if you’re conducting research interviews, transcribing the voice memos can help you spot important phrases that may not be immediately apparent from just listening to the recordings.

Ways To Convert Voice Memos To Text

Now that we know the benefit of transcribing voice memos, what’s the best way to do it? Well, there are two primary ways. 

1. Automated Transcription

AIs are improving at chess nowadays, and these bots power automated transcription services with speech-to-text software. Although this method of transcribing audio is much faster and cheaper, you should know that the accuracy of automated transcriptions is only 86% – at best. 

This means that using AI to transcribe your voice memos will result in errors, words, or phrases that don’t make sense, making automated transcription unsuitable for crucial voice memos where accuracy is paramount.

However, these services can be convenient for casual recordings or situations where accuracy is optional. Automated transcripts are a cheap and quick solution if you don’t intend to use the results in a professional or business setting. 

2, Professional Transcription Services

Professional transcription services are your most practical option for voice memos that demand the highest accuracy possible, such as those in legal, medical, research, or business contexts.

Service providers like Ditto Transcripts have skilled human transcriptionists who can provide over 99% accuracy in any transcription project. While this option may be a bit costly compared to the automated ones, the superior accuracy ensures that important information in your audio file is precisely captured—which is what matters most.

Every word matters when dealing with crucial recordings, so opting for professional transcription services is an investment worth every penny.

Benefits Of Ditto’s Professional Transcription Services

Have Ditto Transcripts convert your memos into professional text formats and enjoy the following benefits: 

Fast Turnaround TimesDitto Transcripts offers the completion of transcripts in as little as twenty-four hours for urgent needs, with options for more extended turnaround times that provide greater cost savings​​.
High AccuracyWe offer 99% accuracy on all transcription projects of any size. 
AffordabilityDitto offers competitive and transparent pricing for professional services at accessible rates​​.
CustomizationTranscripts are prepared precisely as required, adhering to specific rules, formats, and templates​​. Our results can also be tailor-fit for easier integration into workflows, processes, productivity tools, and other platforms. 
U.S.-Based Human Transcribers100% US-based human transcribers to ensure the highest level of accuracy and security at every step. Robots need not apply. 
Dedicated Point PersonClients are assigned a consistent professional familiar with their industry’s lingo, improving communication and service quality​​.
SecurityVoice messages during personal or business activities can contain sensitive information that can cause damage if misused. That’s why here at Ditto, we offer the highest security for transcription. Our services are CJIS, HIPAA and FINRA-compliant, so your voice memos are safe with us.  
Free Trial And No Long-term ContractsTry our services to see if we’re a good fit. Once you’re satisfied, you can sign up for our services on a pay-as-you-go basis. 
Wide Range of ServicesBesides general transcription, our services extend to medical, legal, law enforcement, business, academic, and more, including translation and typing services​​. Our transcribers are knowledgeable in every facet of these industries, so quality and accuracy are assured.

Ditto Transcripts is a CJIS, FINRA, and HIPAA-compliant, Denver, Colorado-based transcription company that provides fast, accurate, and affordable transcription services for individuals and companies of all sizes. Call (720) 287-3710 today for a free quote, and ask about our free five-day trial.

Looking For A Transcription Service?

Ditto Transcripts is a U.S.-based HIPAA and CJIS compliant company with experienced U.S. transcriptionists. Learn how we can help with your next project!