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Customer Review

320 of 328 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars STAY AWAY-Updated 2/1/16, September 17, 2012
This review is from: Dragon NaturallySpeaking Premium 12, English (Old Version) (DVD-ROM)
Having used Dragon NaturallySpeaking premium 12 for about a month, I must admit that I'm completely baffled. They call this an upgrade?

For starters, this version is incredibly slooooooow. And I mean slooooow. It is slow to launch, and slower to close. Recognition is even slower. The promotional material stated that it was "20% more accurate," but I have yet to discover this unique aspect of this upgrade. The previous version (11.5) is far, far superior and much faster, compared to this clunky dog. And in typical Dragon fashion, technical support is a big run around, especially when you're calling to complain about the new upgrade. No one seems to know anything.

I've found that it no longer allows me direct access to dictate my godaddy webmail; now the dictation box pops up. Not a huge deal, but annoying. There are several other applications that duplicate this process, where in the past, it was just simple dictation to various fields.

My upgrade wouldn't allow me to import my user profiles from 11.5, so I had to start from scratch with a new user profile. More time wasted.

That being said: Dragon is still the leader in speech to text technology (IMO). I'm just surprised that they released this inferior upgrade and called it an "improvement" on previous versions. Purchasers should be well advised to consider an earlier version of the program . . . at least until all of the bugs are worked out of premium 12. Until then, I'm going to dump it an re-install 11.5.

Buyer beware.

UPDATE 1/03/13:

I continue to use version 12, (I have not went back to 11.5, as I stated I would do) and I stand by my above review. Version 12 is very slow to load and often maddingly slow to close. I was hoping that consistent working with the program, including audio training, would improve accuracy. To an extent, it does, but the strange quirks of this "upgrade" just don't make any sense. Often, Dragon takes nearly a full minute to boot up, and when you perform user maintenance to your profile when closing the program, it's not uncommon for this process to take two minutes or more. I might note here that I am using Windows 7 64 bit with 8GB RAM and plenty of space on the hard drive, so there shouldn't be any space/speed issues. I think Dragon rushed this one out, and I hope they make some serious improvements with future upgrades.

UPDATE 1/06/13:

I am closing out Dragon 12, and the program is performing its 'User Profile Mainenance.' So far, it has taken over 4 minutes, and the status bar doesn't even read 50%. This is ridiculous, compared with earlier versions of the program.

On another note: those of you using Dragon for their iPhone will be pleasantly surprised that the new update they released just a few days ago does nothing but CRASH! Tried uninstalling and reinstalling the program twice; no luck. Sure, it's free, but Nuance seems to be intentionally driving away customers. There are newly-emerging companies that are competing in this field of limited players, and this loyal customer (until recently) is happy to explore other options. I now see they've lowered the price for Dragon 12 Premium (again), so maybe they figured out that their most recent releases weren't quite ready for prime time. Do yourself a favor and pick up vers. 11.5. I've learned my lesson, and am dumping 12 in favor of an older, better version. And I mean it, this time.

UPDATE 2/06/13:

As suspected, 11.5 (the previous version) is an upgrade from their "upgrade." Much faster to load and close, speech recognition is (IMO) better than 12. I can't wait for their customer service folks to call me with a 'special deal' when they release their next upgrade. I will demand a refund for vers. 12 before I purchase their latest "upgrade."

One other note that I would add to those considering purchasing vers. 12: When you are dictating in a text box (as I had to do for my e-mail when using vers. 12), there is a good chance that you will LOSE what you are dictating if you do not transfer your paragraphs piece by piece. Numerous times, I'd compose lengthy emails, transfer them, only to have them vanish. VERY FRUSTRATING AND A WASTE OF OUR TIME, NUANCE. When I went back to vers. 11.5, it allows me to dictate directly to the compose window. Much more efficient.

On a positive note: Dragon recently updated their iPhone app, and (surprise!) this one actually WORKS!

UPDATE 2/1/16

STAY AWAY. STAY COMPLETELY AWAY FROM DRAGON. Although speech-to-text is wonderful technology, my experience with Dragon has been miserable, ever since my 'upgrade' to 12. My most recent venture was an upgrade to a new Dell computer with Windows 10. Dragon crashes within the first few minutes after bootup, every time. On my desktop computer, I play 'Dragon Bingo,' as I don't know what program it's going to decide to be incompatible with. Sometimes it works with Word, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes it works with WordPerfect, sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes it works with Libre Office, sometimes it doesn't. After all these years, Dragon should just hang it up. The speech to text program that comes with Windows is, at the very least, solid. Before spending the money on Dragon, you should really ask yourself: "Do I enjoy sharp, heavy objects rammed into my ears at high speed?" Because that's what it's going to feel like after you install this program. I might add that their 12.5 'disservice pack' as I call it will cause your hard drive to projectile vomit. STAY AWAY.
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Showing 1-7 of 7 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 2, 2013, 8:28:13 AM PST
R. Wohlman says:
Sadly people will be forced to buy version 12 because it is the only one that is operable on Windows 8. I found that out the hard way when purchasing a new laptop.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 30, 2013, 12:47:29 PM PDT
K. Perrin says:
Thank you for this review. I was debating upgrading to 12 from 11.5, but 11.5 is working well for me. I don't want to effectively "downgrade" by getting version 12.

Posted on Jul 4, 2013, 10:18:55 AM PDT
Michael says:
Thank you for your detailed review. I kept deliberating over whether to buy 11 or 12. I think your review clinched it.

You have done your fellow man a service!

"I feel how weak and fruitless must be any word of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of all the computer users you have saved."
-- Abraham Lincoln

Posted on Sep 26, 2013, 7:39:32 PM PDT
Trigeminy6 says:
much appreciated ! I have used Dragon from version 4.0 through 10.1 and have been out of the scene for a couple years, happily keyboarding away. All of your comments echo much I said to myself over the prior decade of use. Usuaally, when an "upgrade" came, with "20% faster and more accurate" I was expecting by now the lack of persistent misspellings and to actually go at a good clip. Mostly, an experienced Dragon keyboarder can recognize another Dragon user by the type of spelling and grammatical errors that occur, as it is essentially impossible for the human mind to go back proofreading and give meaningful correction. Now, as you point out, they continuous upgrades have declined to not really being an improvement at all. I will stick with version 10.1 that I bought three years ago and has gotten light use. (-:

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 15, 2013, 6:13:43 AM PST
Sky says:
I have been using Dragon since I think version 3 or four. Version 11.5 was by far the best. I'm glad I didn't upgraded on my computer in my workshop. I use it on a daily basis due to carpal tunnel. Version 12 has been an extreme frustration even 12.5 the upgrade did absolutely nothing. I grow very weary of watching the little dragon icon spin around in circles while it decides whether he wants to post the text into the box that I'm working on whether it be emails online responses or whatever. Then sometimes only to find out it didn't recognize a damn word I said and continued to open up all kinds of other windows. I will be going back to 11.5 and will not be doing business with Dragon any further until these problems are resolved. Hopefully there will be a company out there that knows how to make good voice recognition software for those of us who have difficulty typing due to physical issues. The thing that frustrates me the most is when the little icon is spinning around trying to determine where when and how to put the text into the box it will not allow any other window to be moved changed or closed until I turn the microphone off once I turn the microphone off then usually it will post the text and free up my computer. It's like it takes over control and locks everything up. This is extremely frustrating. Thank you for all your reviews and inputs. I have been battling this for over a year now until I finally got online and started researching to find out I'm not alone and this is not a hardware issue like Dragon makes it seem to be. It is ironic though that Dragon has been advertising like crazy on Fox News they show the dictation box and a young lady typing all kinds of happy thoughts and it instantly comes up and does everything she says, what a crock. Absolutely not true and does not happen. Everybody please be advised.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 20, 2014, 10:02:49 AM PST
GuitarLix says:
Seems clear to me, after making use of version 12.5 and spending only a little time really, that it is an improvement over previous versions.

I would recommend "Dragon... for Dummies" to the people in this thread.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 28, 2014, 2:45:45 PM PDT
Ron Becker says:
I am reading this some time after it was posted, but would say that I read "Dragon ... For Dummies" because I was desperate to find out what I was doing wrong. It was no help except to note that in one of the example paragraphs the author got a slew of errors (i.e. nowhere near 99% accuracy!)
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