SpeechMagic / Dragon Comparison – Response to Reader Comment

Risking a SpeechMagic-Dragon Comparison? I would like to reply to the following comment from Eric Jacques: “Wouldn’t it make more sense to compare SpeechMagic to PowerScribe?” in response to the following thread: “Risking a SpeechMagic-Dragon Comparison?

Dear Eric,

Comparing SpeechMagic and PowerScribe would be like comparing an engine to a car. It is indeed important to differentiate:

  • The speech recognition engine technologies
  • The enterprise solutions that integrate the above technologies and are offered to healthcare facilities as part of a comprehensive dictation/workflow management package.

In today’s marketplace, vendors of dictation/workflow solutions are typically powered by one of the two major speech recognition engines: Dragon or SpeechMagic. Hence the importance to compare these two in the first place.

What makes it slightly more confusing in the case of PowerScribe is that:

  • PowerScribe is a Dictaphone product
  • PowerScribe is powered by Dragon
  • Dragon is a Scansoft product
  • Scansoft bought Nuance in 2005 but chose to keep on doing business under the name Nuance
  • Nuance acquired Dictaphone in 2006.

Still following?
Wait, is that you?

So if PowerScribe was to be compared to any system, it would be to a range of enterprise solutions such as:

  • Crescendo Speech Processing (powered by SpeechMagic)
  • Dolbey Fusion Speech (powered by SpeechMagic)
  • MedQuist SpeechQ (powered by SpeechMagic)
  • Dictaphone Enterprise Express (powered by Dragon)
  • SoftMed Speech Recognition (now powered by SpeechMagic since 3M merger)

4 Responses to “SpeechMagic / Dragon Comparison – Response to Reader Comment”

  1. 1 Eric Jacques March 31, 2008 at 8:21 am

    Thanks for the response Claire.

    Although I think I’m even more confused now…

    As you’ll guess, I don’t know much about speech recognition in healthcare but I do have an interest in speech recognition in general. I’d also like to thank you for this blog; there aren’t many on the subject.

    Your comments led me to do some more research on the corporate web sites of Nuance and Phillips.

    SpeechMagic is described as “a document creation platform which
    enables healthcare IT systems providers to deliver seamlessly
    integrated digital dictation and speech recognition capabilities
    to hospitals, clinics and group practices.”

    Dragon NaturallySpeaking Medical (which I’m assuming is the product you were comparing) seems to simply be a voice recognition front-end for an EMR system. Or as they put it “A front-end real-time speech recognition program that works with virtually any Windows®-based EMR system for effcient report completion, and easy navigation and adoption of the EMR.”

    I’m not sure what an EMR is (Electronic Medical Records??) but from the descriptions I get the impression that SpeechMagic is an EMR.

    This is why I’m confused; it still doesn’t seem like an apples to apples comparison.

    Finally, your comparison came out on Nov. 9th and I don’t know when Dragon NaturallySpeaking Medical 9 came out but their brochures indicate that no training is required. Were you comparing to their previous version?

    Finally, Dragon seems like a PC-based solution whereas SpeechMagic seems to be server-based. They really seem to address very different tasks/markets.

    Thanks again!

  2. 3 Dena May 5, 2008 at 4:30 pm


    I was wondering how SpeechMagic might compare to WinScribe?

    Thanks for your help.

  3. 4 speechrecognition May 12, 2008 at 8:35 pm

    Hi Dena,

    Then again, SpeechMagic is an engine, while Winscribe position themselves as an enterprise solution provider. Therefore, you might want to compare Winscribe with other enterprise solutions as listed in the following thread:


    Hope this helps,

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