ScanSoft Unveils Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8; A New Milestone for Speech Recognition in Offices, Enterprises and Homes

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ScanSoft, Inc. (NASDAQ: SSFT), the leading global supplier of speech and imaging solutions, today introduced ScanSoft Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 8, a new release of the world's best-selling and most popular speech recognition application for Microsoft Windows. With unprecedented accuracy improvements, expanded enterprise functionality, and new ease-of-use features, Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 makes advanced speech recognition and dictation more accessible and attainable for use in businesses, enterprises and homes around the world.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 offers significant accuracy improvements over any previous dictation product, increasing accuracy by 20 percent over Dragon NaturallySpeaking 7 and helping users to achieve accuracy levels up to 99 percent. With new functionality to support the roaming user, Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 allows enterprise users to access their personal profile from anywhere on a network and automatically synchronize updates and adaptations from a central location. Performance is further enhanced by new features such as Smart Commands and Smart Formatting, which greatly enhance how Dragon NaturallySpeaking can be customised for a specific usage patterns. In total, the accuracy and performance improvements within Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 deliver unmatched levels of productivity and ease-of-use among continuous speech recognition products.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 represents a significant breakthrough in recognition accuracy, said Chuck Runquist, chief executive officer of GEMCON, a software evaluation and benchmarking company. If you also consider the new features in Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8, such as the roaming user functionality and expanded custom command options, I can see tremendous benefits to both home and enterprise users. It is clear that there is an opportunity to significantly expand the market acceptance of this product.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking turns speech into text at up to 160 words-per-minute, and allows users to control Microsoft Windows and their PC applications completely by voice. The product is tightly integrated with Microsoft Office, which allows users to create new documents, or change the layout of existing documents, using their voice. Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 Professional is the ideal solution for corporations looking to reduce temporary labour costs and insurance premiums by keeping injured and rehabbing employees on the job and highly productive.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking user Dr Barrie Cottrell, Clinical Director of Pathology at West Suffolk Hospital, said:"In my capacity as a Pathologist, I create hundreds of documents a year. By using speech as an interface, Dragon NaturallySpeaking enables me to easily and accurately create the documents that are essential to my job. DNS is an empowering tool, as it negates the need for transcription services, and enables me to work efficiently outside of work hours. Therefore, I am able to be more productive and to manage essential documents both quickly and efficiently."

The new release also includes expanded network tools for installing Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 throughout an enterprise, a key requirement for large organisations looking to implement speech recognition solutions.

Im confident that Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 is the most accurate and easy to use speech solution in our history, with accuracy that heralds a new era for speech recognition, said John Shagoury, president, ScanSoft Productivity Applications Division. With the enhancements that weve made to Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8, we have achieved near-perfect accuracy, making speech recognition viable and valuable for users at all levels in a variety of settings. Whether it be in a small office, or within a large enterprise, Dragon NaturallySpeaking is an innovative, easy to use product that allows users to get the most from their existing applications, increasing productivity and making voice recognition a reality for everyone.

New Levels of Accuracy, Speed and Functionality
To help users achieve an increased level of productivity and unparalleled levels of accuracy, ScanSoft has added a number of key capabilities to Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8:

  • Most Accurate Ever - Significant improvements to the Dragon NaturallySpeaking recognition system has yielded an unprecedented accuracy improvement of up to 20 percent over the previous release, resulting in speech recognition accuracy levels as high as 99 percent.
  • Enterprise Ready with Roaming User Access - Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 makes user profiles available anywhere on the local area network, and automatically synchronizes updates and adaptations centrally. Users can also use the new Native MSI Installer to install Dragon NaturallySpeaking through a network to multiple client machines.
  • Smart Formatting users can specify how Dragon NaturallySpeaking formats dates, measurements and acronyms to meet your requirements and can establish the specific configuration of any word depending on its context, such as before or after numbers.
  • Smart Text and Graphics Shortcuts Instantly create boilerplate templates with variable values defined. For example, say stock option grant 60 1000 and a stock option grant template appears with the vesting beginning in 60 days and the number of shares at 1000. Say stock option grant 30 5000 and the same template appears with the vesting beginning in 30 days and the number of shares at 5000.
  • Smart Commands - Change the action of a voice command depending on the location of the cursor.
  • Improved Vocabulary tools makes it easier than ever before to fine tune custom vocabularies.
  • Mobile Dictation with Pocket PC Devices Users can now dictate into a Palm Tungsten, in addition to digital recorders and Pocket PCs, and have recordings transcribed by Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 when the user synchs with a PC.

ScanSoft Dragon NaturallySpeaking 8 Standard, Preferred, and Professional are available immediately through ScanSoft's global network of reseller partners and VAR network.

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