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Software Review

Voice Express 4.0

by Mike Sazma

L&H Voice Xpress version four is the latest in the family of voice recognition products and represents a significant upgrade from previous versions. Enhancements noted in this version from previous versions include reduced training time, increased accuracy and faster overall performance.

This product seamlessly integrates with the most common word processors including WordPerfect and Microsoft Word.

Products ship with a 30,000-word base vocabulary, which can be expanded to 60,000 words with additional training. The Professional Edition additionally offers four custom vocabulary plug-ins--Technology, Business & Finance, In the News, and Leisure; other vocabulary modules are sold separately.

To my surprise, Voice Xpress Pro achieved about 85 percent accuracy right out of the box, with the eventual promise of 95 percent accuracy or higher through continued use. Initial training, called enrollment, took about 40 minutes to complete and process. The enrollment process is also used to create multiple personalized user profiles, which can be exported to additional workstations.

Key to the success of Voice Xpress is L&H's Continuous Speech Recognition (CSR) and Natural Language Technology (NLT). Unlike the stilted phrasing of early voice recognition, CSR lets you talk in normal, fluid patterns. This means you can dictate text as quickly as you can speak--up to 140 words per minute under ideal circumstances.

NLT recognizes subtle shifts in phrasing to differentiate between normal dictation and Word commands.

One other item worthy of note is that this software had the ability to select multiple profiles and to export profiles from one PC to another - a great time saver.

Processing speech to text was a significant improvement.   Previous versions had been slow. On my 400MHz  Pentium II, this processing delay, when there was one, never exceeded five seconds.

L&H Voice Xpress Pro 4.0 is a most impressive product that keeps getting better the more you use it.

L&H Voice Xpress Professional 4.0, Lernout & Hauspie Speech Products

800-380-1234; 781-203-5000