Are there any serious studies looking at why we still use/need a keyboard if speech recognition technology makers (like Nuance's Better Day and Dragon) claim they do more words per minute?

  • 8
    Even if speech is 100 times faster than typing that doesn't really mean that keyboards should be eliminated. That's like saying if aeroplanes are faster at transporting people then why do cars still need to exist.
    – JonW
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 10:34
  • 1
    Mute people, deaf people (who often have trouble speaking), people with really thick accents trying to write in a non-fluent language, blind people who have screen readers built in to the keyboard and use it for navigation.... Or people like me who write code for a living. I don't think Dragon would be faster at writing this: $('#previewDiv').html('<h4>' + $('#id_title').val() + '</h4><p>' + $('#id_problem_statement').val() + '</p>'); Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 14:12
  • so... no serious studies on the conditions in which typing is more efficient than dictation?
    – Mishax
    Commented Dec 2, 2015 at 15:17

1 Answer 1


Some reasons:

  • Not everybody can speak
  • Not everybody can speak clearly enough for voice recognition to work well
  • Not everybody wants to enter text in a environment quiet enough for voice recognition to work well
  • Speech input is clumsy at handling homonyms, accents, formatting, indentation, and multi-key keyboard shortcuts, among other things
  • Not everybody works in an environment where speaking out loud is possible
  • The "Up to 99%" accuracy quoted one of those articles actually isn't very good. Especially since the word-errors that are produced by voice recognition can be harder to spot, and clumsier to correct, than the character based typos from keyboard input

…and probably some more.

  • You could add: talking for hours is exhausting.
    – peterchen
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 20:51
  • And, when entering longer chunks of text, people like me go back and edit speech-recognized text for accuracy. I find that can take more time than just typing it. And I don't know about you all, but when speaking I pause and "um" as I think about what I'm saying. (Therefore, the editing.) Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 21:01

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