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A Guide to iPad Dictation: Voice Typing Made Easy

15th May 2024

Jacob Woolcock


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In this video, I demonstrate how to enable and use the built-in dictation feature on the iPad, highlighting its ability to transcribe spoken words into text accurately and efficiently. By following the step-by-step instructions, you’ll learn how to activate dictation in the settings and use it across various apps, enhancing your productivity and ease of use.

This feature is particularly valuable for those who prefer speaking over typing, offering a convenient way to input text quickly. Whether you’re drafting a document, composing an iMessage, or browsing the web, dictation can simplify your workflow and improve your iPad experience.

The iPad has had a built-in dictation button on the keyboard for quite a few years now, but year on year, it gets better and better. Now, it can do auto-punctuation as well as edit what you type. To make sure you’ve got it enabled, jump into Settings and then, under General, select the Keyboard option. Scroll right down to the bottom; from here, there’s a little section for dictation, and you can make sure these toggles are turned on at this point. It really is as simple as that.

You can now jump into any app that uses the keyboard. I’ll go for this document in Pages, and then when you start typing, simply press the dictate button next to the space bar and talk to your iPad just like this. Now, whenever I speak words out loud, the iPad will transcribe them onto my page for me. This works in any document, not just a Pages document. You could be reading a website in Safari or writing an iMessage. Just about anywhere you can type using the keyboard, dictation will be an option for you.

You can see it’s pretty accurate. It’s not 100% yet, but of course, you can then go back and make changes should you wish to. And that’s dictation on the iPad: one tap and you can just talk away, and it will transcribe what you’re saying.

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