Posted by Greg Mills

Lion delivered a lot of new features. However, some rumors and wish list items didn’t get fulfilled upon Mac OS X 7 reaching Gold Master status. One of the most likely rumors that didn’t pan out is a system wide “speech to text” feature. The text to speech feature has been around since before Apple even went to the Mac OS X from the older Apple Systems.

Speech to text is a lot harder to implement with the quality Apple demands before an app is launched. While there is a chance the Nuance / Apple connection will result in an Apple app sold for an additional price, recent leaks of iOS 5 developer releases indicate that feature might be an iPhone / iPad trick. I have an iPhone Nuance app that was free, but only works with short clips. It does work pretty well.

Having the feature on your Mac could be very powerful and useful. Imagine dropping an MP3 file onto a speech to text icon and having your computer spit out a Pages document ready to edit. Nuance actually requires an internet connection to convert your speech into text on remote servers. The current Nuance speech to text app doesn’t have the actual software for the tricky interpretation of speech into text residing on your local computer. See;

One more thing I suggested is that Apple could provide an iOS sandbox on the Mac platform and sell games and the like that are designed for iPhone and iPad to Mac users. The touch interface required might make that hard to implement but, no one can deny the convergence of the iOS and Mac platforms and Apple is unlikely to leave any money on the table.