Speech recognition is an often forgotten feature of Windows operating systems has actually been ready to use since Windows Vista. Here’s a guide on setting it up for first time use.

Windows Speech Recongition System

Speech recognition seems to be all around us these days, with Google Voice for Android devices and Siri for iOS users. It’s easy to forget that Windows has it’s very own speech recognition system built in ever since the release of Windows Vista.

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While there are some notable voice dictation programs on the market, this free alternative is a great way to get started with speech recognition and see whether it is a feature you are likely to use.

Step 1 – Access Speech Recognition Settings

To get started, simply open the Control Panel and click ease of access.

Speech Recognition Guide 1 Ease Of Access 

You will then see a couple of options beside it and one should be speech recognition with a microphone icon beside it. Open this up and you will be brought to the next screen, which should have a heading saying “Configure your Speech Recognition experience”.

Speech Recognition Guide 2 

Step 2 – Ensure Microphone Is Set up Correctly And Start Speech Recognition

The next step is to select the input you are going to be using as your microphone. This can be a mic built into your computer, a headset or a microphone specifically for voice recognition software.

To do this, simply click set up microphone and select which one you want to use.

Microphone Speech Recognition Setup 

After this – you can click the start speech recognition and the built in toolbar will pop up with a microphone and the word “off” beside it. Once you click the “off” button it will activate “listening mode” and the system will begin actively listening for your voice commands.

Speech Recognition Listening 

Step 3- Train and Improve Windows Speech Recognition

A vital part of using any speech recognition program is to understand that the more you use it, the more accurate it will get.

Windows speech recognition software is no different, and thankfully it is very easy to begin training the software.

To do so, simply select “train your computer to better understand you,” from the speech recognition menu under the Ease of Access area of the control you will be prompted to say various phrases that will allow the computer to adjust to your style of speaking and understand your voice a little better for more accurate results.

Speech Recognition Training 

There is also a “speech tutorial” which you can carry out to see the various commands and features of the software and how exactly it works. It is strongly advised that you carry out the tutorial to understand the full capabilities of the speech recognition software Windows have provided.