Zoom brings its live transcription feature to free users. Paid users have had access to the service for a while, but free users will soon also have the option of adding automated closed captions with AI assistance to their meetings.

Live transcription rolls out on all accounts this fall, However, you can request early access through this request form. Note: Multi-lingual Zoom hosts: The function only recognizes English at startup.

We’re not sure how long it will be before early access is granted. However, here’s how to enable Zoom’s live transcription once it’s available to you:

  1. Sign in to the Zoom website.
  2. Go to Settings> Meeting.
  3. Switch “Subtitle.” Note: If you see the feature but can’t turn it on, you may need to get permission from the Zoom group or the account administrator. Please visit Zoom’s support page for more information.
  4. To turn on “Enable the live transcription service to display the transcript on the sidewall during the meeting.”

How to enable Live Transcript during a meeting you are hosting

  1. Make sure that live transcription is enabled using the steps above
  2. Open Zoom and start or join a new meeting.
  3. click “Subtitle” or “Live Transcript” from the call controls.
  4. Choose “Activate automatic transcription”

Once Live Transcript is activated, continue your call as usual. The app does all the subtitles for you.

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The app automatically detects language and types it on the screen. However, there is a chance that errors will occur. According to Zoom’s support page, The accuracy of a live transcript can be influenced by:

  • Background noise
  • Volume and clarity of the speaker’s voice
  • Knowledge of the speaker in English
  • Lexicons and dialects specific to a geography or community

If the live transcription doesn’t work, Zoom recommends entering it manual labels for your Zoom meeting or breakout room in real time.

Google Meet also works as a contingency plan if you don’t have the subtitles to automatically generate Zoom. Meets automatic subtitles are easy to turn on and identify English, French, German, Portugeuse and Spanish. When all else fails, you can use third-party tools like description or even a paid transcription service Add closed captions to a previously recorded meeting.

[The Verge]