What do the companies Simonsays, Trint, Sonix, Otter, Verbit, and Temi all have in common?

They represent a tsunami of next generation transcription companies that have kicked into high gear in the last two years. Leveraging artificial intelligence and speech-to-text technology has redefined the process of transforming recorded audio into the written word with high accuracy. What once was an intensely laborious process can be accomplished in roughly 1/4th the amount of time.

The tectonic shift that caused this tsunami is the massive investment over the past decade by the giants (IBM, Google, Microsoft, etc.) to improve on their AI algorithms for speech-to-text technology. Being able to communicate with our computers using natural language has always been the goal, and we’re closer than ever before. It would be a fair bet that the massively successful sales numbers behind the Amazon Echo and Google Home are accelerating R&D to bring us closer to human parity with speech-to-text. Interestingly, Microsoft claims to have reached that point already in perfect laboratory settings.

What does this mean for legal tech?

The price and time it takes to produce a legal transcript is going drop significantly. The traditional model for producing transcripts will adapt to the new standard for producing transcripts. Attorneys who are frustrated with turn-around time and price gouging will experience a wave of relief.

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