Free Video Transcription Tools: Top 10 Reviewed 2023

by Andre Smith
Last Updated:
November 21, 2023
Free Video Transcription Tools: Top 10 Reviewed 2023
Prepare to bid farewell to endless hours of typing and embrace the era of efficient, accurate video transcription with our comprehensive guide to the top 10 free video transcription tools available in November 2023. Whether you're a content creator crafting engaging videos, a journalist chasing deadlines, or a student juggling multiple assignments, this updated review will equip you with the knowledge to find the perfect tool to streamline your transcription process.



In an increasingly digital world, video content has emerged as a dominant form of communication. However, navigating, indexing, and utilizing this content to its fullest potential often requires transcription, a process that converts spoken language within a video into written text. This article aims to guide you through the landscape of free video transcription tools, their uses, benefits, and how to choose the right one for your specific needs.

What is Video Transcription?

Video transcription is the process of converting the audio within a video into written text. It's not just about creating subtitles or captions, but it involves creating a complete, written record of all spoken words, significant sounds, and descriptions of relevant non-verbal communication in the video. This not only enhances accessibility for the hearing-impaired but also aids in better understanding, content searchability, indexing, and referencing. Transcripts can also be invaluable for studying, content creation, and data analysis, to name a few applications.

Importance of Choosing the Right Transcription Tool

When it comes to transcription, not all tools are created equal. The effectiveness of a transcription tool can greatly influence the quality and accuracy of the output. Factors such as the language spoken, audio quality, speaker accents, and speed of speech can all impact transcription accuracy. When selecting a transcription tool, it's important to consider its ease of use, speed, accuracy, compatibility with your operating system, and the languages it supports. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the top 10 free transcription tools, offering insights to help you select the one that best fits your needs.

Top 10 Free Video Transcription Tools

1. ScreenApp

ScreenApp is a video platform that allows users to record their screen, transcribe their videos, and search and summarize their content. ScreenApp's transcription feature uses advanced speech recognition technology to automatically transcribe videos, making it easy to search and summarize content, as well as create captions and subtitles for videos.


  • Automatic transcription: ScreenApp automatically transcribes videos, eliminating the need for manual transcription.
  • Speaker identification: ScreenApp identifies different speakers in a video and assigns labels to each speaker's transcript, making it easy to follow conversations in multi-speaker videos.
  • Searchable transcripts: Transcripts are fully searchable, allowing users to find specific information quickly and easily.
  • Export options: ScreenApp offers a variety of export options, including PDF, TXT, and DOCX, making it easy to share transcripts with others.
  • Time stamps: Transcripts include synchronized timestamps, so users can easily jump to specific points in a video.


  • Automatic transcription: ScreenApp's automatic transcription feature saves users a significant amount of time and effort.
  • Speaker identification: Speaker identification is a valuable feature for multi-speaker videos, making it easy to follow conversations.
  • Searchable transcripts: Searchable transcripts make it easy to find specific information in long videos.
  • Export options: The variety of export options makes it easy to share transcripts with others or use them in different workflows.
  • Time stamps: Synchronized timestamps make it easy to jump to specific points in a video.


  • Accuracy: While ScreenApp's transcription accuracy is generally good, it may struggle with heavy accents, fast speech, or low-quality audio.
  • Pricing: ScreenApp's pricing plans may be too expensive for some users, especially those who only need to transcribe a few videos occasionally.

User Experience

Users generally report that ScreenApp is easy to use and produces accurate transcripts. However, some users have noted that the accuracy can suffer with heavy accents, fast speech, or low-quality audio. Additionally, some users have found that ScreenApp's pricing plans are too expensive.

Overall, ScreenApp is a good transcription service for users who need to transcribe a large number of videos or who need transcripts with speaker identification. However, users who only need to transcribe a few videos occasionally or who are on a tight budget may want to consider other options.

2. has positioned itself as a leading transcription tool by leveraging AI for real-time transcriptions. It’s recognized for its intelligent voice recognition technology that accurately transcribes speech from various sources such as meetings, interviews, and lectures. Its advanced technology is capable of handling long recordings and even distinguishes between different speakers, offering a comprehensive solution for transcription needs.

Features of Otter

  • Real-time transcription: transcribes voice-to-text in real-time, allowing users to see transcriptions live as they happen.
  • Free minutes: It provides 600 free minutes of transcription each month, making it an excellent choice for occasional users.
  • Speaker Identification: It differentiates between various speakers in a conversation, assigning different labels to each, which is particularly useful in multi-speaker situations like meetings or interviews.
  • Searchable Transcripts: Transcripts are fully searchable, allowing users to locate key points or topics easily.
  • Export Options: offers versatile export options, supporting various formats like PDF, TXT, and DOCX.
  • Timestamps: Every transcription comes with synchronized timestamps, which can be very helpful for cross-referencing against the audio.

Pros and Cons


  • is praised for its intuitive user interface that's easy to navigate.
  • The real-time transcription feature is highly valued as it aids in note-taking during live events.
  • Its ability to distinguish between different speakers is a feature not found in many other transcription services.


  • While is generally accurate, it may struggle with heavy accents, fast speech, or low-quality audio.
  • Its free version comes with a limit of 600 minutes per month, which may not be sufficient for heavy users.

User Experience

  • Users often comment on the ease of use and intuitive nature of the interface, noting it's simple to get started with the tool.
  • Real-time transcription is noted as a particularly standout feature, assisting in live meetings, lectures, and events.
  • Its integration with other tools such as Zoom and Dropbox has been commended.
  • On the other hand, some users have pointed out that could improve its accuracy with complex terminologies or names.
  • Some users have also mentioned that an increase in the free minutes provided per month would be beneficial.


Overview is renowned for its high-quality transcription services, including human and automatic transcriptions. The automatic transcription service, although less accurate than the manual one, offers a quick and cost-effective way to convert audio and video to text. It's a go-to choice for professionals needing a fast turnaround.


Rev's Automatic Transcription comes with the following features:

  • Fast Turnaround: The service can transcribe audio and video files in just a few minutes, making it ideal for those who need quick results.
  • Wide Range of File Formats: Rev supports a multitude of file formats, including .mp3, .wav, .m4a, and .aif.
  • Inbuilt Editor: After transcription, users can use the inbuilt editor to make necessary corrections and modifications.
  • Speaker Identification: The service can differentiate between speakers, tagging them accordingly in the transcription.

Pros and Cons


  • Quick turnaround, usually within minutes.
  • The interface is straightforward and user-friendly.
  • Support for a variety of file formats.


  • Automatic transcription accuracy is lower than Rev's human transcription service.
  • No free version is available; only offers paid services.
  • It may struggle with poor audio quality or heavy accents.

User Experience

Users of Rev's Automatic Transcription service often praise its speed, citing the quick turnaround as a significant advantage, especially for time-sensitive tasks. They also appreciate the user-friendly interface and the service's ability to handle various file formats. On the flip side, some users note that the automatic service's accuracy can be hit-or-miss, particularly with poor audio quality or heavy accents. However, the ease of use and rapid results make it a popular choice among many users.

4. Google Docs Voice Typing


Google Docs Voice Typing is a speech-to-text service embedded within Google Docs. While it isn't a standalone transcription service, it does offer users a convenient and free way to transcribe spoken words into written text in real-time. With a simple setup and use, it's an excellent tool for individuals and professionals who need a quick and easy transcription.


Google Docs Voice Typing includes several features:

  • Real-Time Transcription: As you speak, Google Docs Voice Typing transcribes your speech into text instantly.
  • Command Recognition: The tool understands and responds to voice commands, enabling users to format and edit their text by voice.
  • Multilingual Support: It supports a multitude of languages, making it an ideal tool for users worldwide.
  • Ease of Use: Just click on the microphone icon and start speaking, no additional setup required.

Pros and Cons


  • It's completely free to use.
  • Works well with Google's ecosystem.
  • Supports a variety of languages.
  • Allows hands-free editing through voice commands.


  • Requires a stable internet connection.
  • May struggle with complex words or accents.
  • Lack of advanced transcription features like automatic timestamps or speaker identification.

User Experience

Users generally appreciate Google Docs Voice Typing for its simplicity and integration with Google's ecosystem. They find it valuable for taking quick notes or drafting content hands-free. However, users often note that it's not as robust or accurate as dedicated transcription services, especially for long or complex transcriptions. Some users also report that the tool occasionally struggles with strong accents or specialized terminology. Nevertheless, for a free, integrated tool, Google Docs Voice Typing offers a satisfactory user experience.

5. Descript


Descript is a collaborative audio/video editor that includes transcription, screen recording, and podcasting tools.


Descript provides:

  • Multifunctional Editing Suite: Enables users to edit audio by editing the transcribed text.
  • Screen Recording: Offers a built-in screen recording feature.
  • Automatic Transcription: Transcribes audio and video files automatically with decent accuracy.

Pros and Cons


  • A complete suite for audio and video editing and transcription.
  • Unique editing features based on transcribed text.


  • Might be overkill for users who just need a simple transcription tool.
  • Transcription accuracy can be affected by poor audio quality.

User Experience

Descript's unique approach to audio and video editing (editing by modifying transcribed text) has been highly appreciated by its users. However, for users who are looking for just a transcription tool, it might seem complex.

6. Transcribe


Transcribe is a browser-based tool that offers both automatic and manual transcription services. It’s particularly suitable for those who need to transcribe audio files frequently.


Transcribe provides functionalities like:

  • In-browser transcription: Users can manually transcribe with an integrated audio player and text editor on the same screen.
  • Automatic Transcription: Fast, automated transcription service with decent accuracy.
  • Foot pedal support: For manual transcription, it supports a foot pedal for hands-free audio control.

Pros and Cons


  • Provides both automated and manual transcription options.
  • No software download is needed.


  • No free version is available.
  • Automated transcription accuracy can vary.

User Experience

Users appreciate its clean, user-friendly interface and the flexibility to switch between automated and manual transcription.

7. Trint


Trint is an automated transcription service that uses AI to transcribe audio and video files into text.


Trint offers features like:

  • Real-time transcription: Trint can transcribe audio and video files in real time.
  • Collaboration tools: Trint allows multiple users to access and edit a transcription.

Pros and Cons


  • Real-time transcription feature.
  • Allows collaboration.


  • Accuracy can be affected by audio quality.
  • No free version is available.

User Experience

Users find its collaboration features useful, especially for team projects. However, users have noted that the transcription accuracy can sometimes be inconsistent.

8. Sonix


Sonix is an automated transcription service known for its accuracy and speed. It is widely used in industries such as media, research, and education.

FeaturesSonix provides features like:

  • Highly Accurate Transcription: Utilizing AI, Sonix provides one of the highest accuracies in the market.
  • Multilingual Support: Supports multiple languages.
  • Subtitle Export: Users can export transcriptions as subtitles directly.

Pros and Cons


  • High accuracy.
  • Good language support.
  • Subtitle export feature.


  • No free version is available.
  • Transcription accuracy can be affected by poor audio quality.

User Experience

Users appreciate the accuracy and speed of Sonix, although some users have reported a drop in accuracy with poor audio quality.

9. IBM Watson Speech to Text


IBM Watson Speech to Text is a cloud-based AI service that converts speech into written text.


IBM Watson offers features like:

  • Real-time transcription: It provides a real-time transcription of the audio.
  • Customization: Users can train the model with domain-specific terms and phrases for better accuracy.

Pros and Cons


  • Real-time transcription feature.
  • Allows customization for better results.


  • Requires technical knowledge for advanced features.
  • The free version has limitations.

User Experience

IBM Watson Speech to Text is appreciated for its real-time transcription and customization features. However, non-technical users may find the advanced features challenging to use.

10. Microsoft Azure Speech to Text


Azure Speech to Text, part of Azure Cognitive Services, is a cloud-based service that uses machine learning to convert spoken language into written text.


Azure Speech to Text offers functionalities such as:

  • Real-Time Transcription: Transcribes audio streams in real time.
  • Customization: Users can customize the speech recognition to transcribe domain-specific terms and phrases accurately.
  • Multilingual Support: Supports a broad range of languages and dialects.

Pros and Cons


  • High accuracy and real-time transcription capability.
  • Allows customization for better results.
  • Good language support.


  • Requires technical knowledge for setting up and using advanced features.
  • No free version is available; pricing is based on usage.

User Experience

Users have praised its accuracy and customization features. However, it's also noted that the service requires a technical understanding to fully utilize its features.

How to Choose the Right Transcription Tool

Choosing the right transcription tool depends on a variety of factors.

Here are some to consider:

  • Accuracy: How accurately can the tool transcribe your audio? This is crucial as incorrect transcriptions can cause misunderstandings.
  • Speed: How quickly does the tool transcribe audio? Speed can be a significant factor if you are working with large volumes of content.
  • Languages Supported: Does the tool support the language(s) you need to transcribe?
  • Ease of Use: Is the interface user-friendly? A tool with a complicated UI can be difficult to work with.
  • Customer Support: Does the tool provide good customer support in case of issues or queries?

The Future of Transcription Tools

Transcription tools have come a long way, from manual transcription to automated tools and now AI-powered solutions. The future of transcription lies in the hands of evolving technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). These advancements are already making transcription more accurate, faster, and cheaper.

In the future, we can expect transcription tools to become even more intelligent, perhaps even capable of understanding context, tone, or emotions. They might also evolve to handle multiple speakers more effectively, distinguishing voices accurately regardless of accent or speech speed. Moreover, real-time transcription could become the norm rather than the exception, enabling instant access to video content across platforms.

Understanding the Technology Behind Transcription Tools

Modern transcription tools leverage a combination of technologies to convert spoken language into text. One crucial component is Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), which involves using algorithms to convert spoken words into written text.

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning come into play to improve the accuracy and efficiency of this process. AI uses a vast database of language data to understand and interpret human speech, while ML enables the software to learn from every interaction, improving its performance over time.

By "learning" the nuances of language, accents, and dialects, ML models in transcription tools can improve accuracy, making transcription more efficient and reliable.

Case Studies and User Testimonials

While the exact case studies and user testimonials would require real-time data which I, as an AI, do not have access to, here is an example of how you might structure this section:

  1. Case Study 1 - Small Business: A small business owner used Tool X for transcribing their customer support calls. The transcripts helped them analyze customer complaints, improving their services based on the insights. They particularly liked the tool's accuracy and quick turnaround time, but suggested that the tool could be improved by adding support for more languages.
  2. User Testimonial - Student: A university student used Tool Y for transcribing lectures. It made note-taking easier, helping them focus more on understanding the lectures in real time. They praised the tool's user-friendly interface and the quality of transcripts. However, they thought that a better pricing plan for students could make the tool more accessible to users like them.

Privacy and Security Considerations

As transcription tools often handle sensitive information, privacy and security are paramount. Users need to ensure that their data is adequately protected during and after transcription. Many transcription tools safeguard user data by adopting stringent security measures, such as encryption during transmission and storage, not storing data beyond necessary durations, and conforming to data protection regulations.

Some tools also offer features like local processing where your data doesn't leave your device, adding an extra layer of security. However, always review the privacy policy of any tool before use to ensure it aligns with your data privacy expectations and requirements.

Accessibility and Usability

Video transcription tools play a vital role in making content more accessible, especially for individuals with hearing impairments. Transcripts and captions enable them to engage with video content that they would otherwise struggle to access.

Many of these tools are designed with usability in mind, offering user-friendly interfaces that can be navigated easily even by individuals with little to no technical expertise. Features like a simple UI, step-by-step guides, and helpful tooltips can make these tools more approachable for a wide range of users.

Integration with Other Tools

Integration capability is another essential feature of modern transcription tools. Being able to connect with other software—like video editing tools, content management systems, or customer relationship management systems—can streamline your workflow and increase productivity. For example, a transcription tool might integrate directly with a video hosting platform like YouTube, allowing you to generate and upload captions for your videos seamlessly.

Cost-Benefit Analysis

While the focus of this article is on free transcription tools, it's important to consider the overall cost-effectiveness. The time investment and potential limitations—like restrictions on transcription duration, delays in processing, or reduced accuracy—could impact your productivity.

Tips and Tricks for Using Transcription Tools

Getting the most out of transcription tools often involves a few tips and tricks.

  • Improve Accuracy: Good transcription starts with good audio. Try to record in a quiet environment, speak clearly, and avoid jargon or slang when possible. Some tools allow you to train them on your voice or specific terminologies for even better results.
  • Speed Up the Process: Use shortcut keys for play/pause, rewind, and fast-forward functions. This can save you considerable time when reviewing and editing transcripts.
  • Use Advanced Features: Many tools offer features like timestamps, speaker identification, and export options. Make sure to explore these features to get the most out of your transcription tool.

Customer Support and Community

Good customer support can make a significant difference in your transcription tool experience. Check if the tool provides helpful resources like tutorials, FAQ sections, and guides.

Some transcription tools also have active user communities or forums. These can be invaluable for getting advice, solving problems, and discovering new ways to use the tool. Remember, the support behind the tool is as important as the tool itself.


In this digital age, video transcription tools have become an essential asset for improving accessibility, enhancing SEO, and extracting value from video content. While there are numerous free options available, it's crucial to consider factors like accuracy, speed, ease of use, language support, and data privacy when selecting a tool.

Best Video transcription tool FAQs

What is the best free video transcription tool?

The 'best' tool can vary based on individual needs, but some highly-rated free video transcription tools include, Sonix, Transcribe, Rev's automatic transcription service, and Bear File Converter.

How can I transcribe a video for free?

You can transcribe a video for free by using online transcription tools such as or Transcribe. Simply upload your video, and the software will automatically generate a transcript which you can then edit and download.

How accurate are free video transcription tools?

The accuracy of free video transcription tools can vary, but many have an accuracy rate of up to 90% or more with clear audio. However, accuracy can decrease with background noise, heavy accents, or specialized terminology.

How do free video transcription tools work?

Free video transcription tools use technologies such as Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Machine Learning (ML) to convert spoken language from video into written text.

Are free video transcription tools secure?

Most free video transcription tools prioritize data security and use encryption to protect your files. However, it's important to read the tool's privacy policy to understand how your data is handled and protected.

Can free video transcription tools integrate with other software?

Yes, many transcription tools can integrate with other software such as video editing tools, content management systems, or customer relationship management systems to streamline your workflow.

What are some tips for using free video transcription tools effectively?

To use free transcription tools effectively, ensure the audio quality is good, use shortcut keys for reviewing and editing, and utilize advanced features like timestamps and speaker identification.

What factors should I consider when choosing a video transcription tool?

When choosing a transcription tool, consider factors like accuracy, speed, languages supported, ease of use, customer support, data privacy, and security.

How can video transcription tools benefit my business?

Video transcription tools can enhance SEO, improve accessibility, provide better user engagement, and create text content that can be repurposed for various needs.

What technology do video transcription tools use?

Most video transcription tools use technologies like automatic speech recognition (ASR), artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning (ML) to transcribe speech into text.

How does AI and machine learning contribute to video transcription?

AI and machine learning algorithms help in recognizing and transcribing speech, learning from corrections, improving over time, and can handle multiple languages and accents.

How do free video transcription tools ensure data privacy?

Most reputable video transcription tools use data encryption and have strong privacy policies to ensure that your data remains confidential and protected.

Are video transcription tools user-friendly for people with no technical experience?

Yes, most video transcription tools are designed to be user-friendly and require little to no technical experience. They come with intuitive interfaces, clear instructions, and customer support.

Is it worth investing in a paid transcription tool?

Depending on the volume of transcription and the specific needs like accuracy and language support, investing in a paid transcription tool could be worthwhile. However, many free tools also provide excellent services.

ScreenApp effortlessly captures your screen recordings and leverages AI to transcribe and summarize your meetings and workflows, making it simple to share insights with your team, clients, and prospects.
Start Now