Video-to-text transcription software

Written by ashley poland Google
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Video-to-text transcription software
(Polka Dot RF/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

Whether you transcribe for a living or just need to transcribe a YouTube video once, having the right software to do so can make the task that much easier. There are several free and commercial programs that aid the process of transcribing video files; some are automated, while others are not.

FTW Transcriber

The FTW Transcriber is a free transcription program that allows you to open files either on your computer or from remote servers; it displays the video in addition to playing the audio, and allows you to adjust the speed of the video for more accurate transcription. You can use it with hotkeys on your keyboard or with a USB foot pedal.


InqScribe is a commercial product that offers a 30-day trial; it provides a media playback options comparable to most digital media players and allows you to embed time codes in your transcription for easy reference. Additionally, InqScribe can convert your completed transcription to subtitles.

Express Scribe

Express Scribe is a free transcription software for both Windows and Mac that is compatible with either hotkeys or a professional USB foot pedal. It offers a variety of features, including the ability to create a "mini" version of the program to minimise screen space, and playing back any video file that is supported by Windows Media Player.


SubPLY is a free automated transcription service; it allows you to submit your video's URL -- such as on YouTube or Blip.TV -- for transcription, with a turnaround time of about one to two minutes per each minute of video; the maximum allowed length is 10 minutes.

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