Well we’ve barely started the new year, but I’ve declared Otter.ai my very favorite app of 2020.
Otter is a meeting recording tool that transcribes in real time, even sweeping back through the conversation using artificial intelligence to clean everything up. Then you can review the written notes and click through to hear the audio wherever you want. It will even pull out key words and phrases to help you find the topics you want quickly.
Here’s a quick demo of Otter in action:
- You get 600 minutes a month for free
I have a bunch of sales and logistics calls a month. They generally last 15-45 minutes. Yet I’ve never come close to hitting the limit.
- The paid version is very reasonable
For about $10 a month (less if you pay yearly), you get many more minutes. The upgrade also gives you other ways to export and more integrations, plus helps edit out the silent sections in the recordings.
- Otter will recognize the speakers
One of the things the AI will do is to identify the individual speakers. You can go back in and swap words for the default “Speaker 1″ and Speaker 2.” And with a few sentences, you can train Otter to recognize your voice and automatically identify you.
- You can share the transcripts
This is one of the features I love the most. Once I’m done with a call, I send the link to my assistant, and she then has all the notes she needs to write the contract, take care of the logistics and more.
Check it out! Here’s the transcript and recording from the video I made.
- Otter is great for collaboration
I use Otter to capture the notes from conversations, but it would be even better for meetings and collaborations. You can invite others to edit and update the transcript.
- It doesn’t work while you’re on the phone
One bummer thing is that if you’re using the Otter mobile app on your cell for the meeting, you can’t record on it. You can use your cell as a recording device in a face-to-face conversation. Frequently I record on my computer while I have my phone on speaker.
- You should ask before you record
I’m sure the laws about recording conversations differ greatly around the country, but just to make sure, I always ask for permission before turning Otter on.
- The free version doesn’t sync in the cloud
If you record via the app on your phone, the audio stays on the phone. If you use your computer, your recordings will be stored separately. You have to pay for the upgrade to have everything in one place.