How to use Google docs for text translation and voice recording

Did you know that you now can use voice recording with Google docs, I just love this feature as it helps me when I to write, I noticed that the older I got I talk to myself when I type. With the voice recording features from Google, I can just speak out loud and my voice is captured by the Google Docs.

It is very easy to start the voice recording, as you can see from this screenshot.

Voice Recording


To start the voice recording

  • Check that your microphone works
  • Open a document in Google docs with a Chrome browser
  • Click Tools > Voice typing. A microphone box appears.
  • When you’re ready to speak, click the microphone.
  • Speak clearly, at a normal volume and pace (see below for more information on using punctuation).
  • When you’re done, click the microphone again.
  • Correct mistakes while voice typing

If you make a mistake while you’re typing with your voice, you can move your cursor to the mistake and fix it without turning off the microphone. After you correct the mistake, move the cursor back to where you want to continue.

To see a list of suggestions, right-click words underlined in gray.

Voice Recording supports many languages, you can check here on the Google support page.

The Google Docs voice recording is also supported on the Android and iPhone platforms. Here is a screenshot from my iPhone 5, at the bottom you can see a microphone on the keyboard, just click and start talking. It works like a charm, even with my accent.


Text Translation

Text translation is very straight forward, here are the instructions.

  1. Open a document in Google Docs.
  2. On the top menu, click Tools > Translate document.
  3. Enter a name for the new document and select a language. Click Translate.
  4. A translated copy of your document will open in a new window. You can also see this copy in your Drive.

More Read

A good read to learn more about Voice Translators App is 7 Best Android Voice Translator Apps to Make the Most of Your Trip.





2 responses to “How to use Google docs for text translation and voice recording”

  1. Dan Avatar

    With the title, I expected that this article would explain how to do dynamic speech to translated text. This explains how to do (dynamic) speech to text and then static text to translated text. Is it possible to chain the speech to text immediately through the translate tool to produce the translated text directly from the dynamic speech input?

    1. Torbjorn Zetterlund Avatar
      Torbjorn Zetterlund

      With a bit of programming using the Google Apps Script, you can take the speech to run it through a Natural Language API, detect the language translate from one of the supported languages and feed it back as text. You can go as far as using the Google AutoML service, build your own language translation.

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