Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find out about my Office version, 32-bit vs 64-bit?

Office download website provides the 32-bit Office by default. Even if you have 64-bit Windows, your Office version will most likely be 32-bit. To find your version:

  • Launch Word, click on File menu (Alt+F), and then Account.
  • Click on About Word. Check the top of the dialog box for the version number.

Dictation ribbon does not appear in the Office apps – Outlook, PowerPoint, Word. What should I do?

Verify that Dictate version, 32-bit vs 64-bit matches with Office version. Please make sure that you restart the Office app after installing the add-in. Office apps might have disabled the add-in. To enable it, please follow the steps below.

In Outlook:

  • Click inside the Tell me what you want to do search box. It's the rightmost item on the menu bar.
  • Type disabled items, then choose Disabled Items from the results shown.
  • Select Dictate from the Disabled Items and enable it.

In Word/PowerPoint:

  • Click on the File menu and then click Options. Select the Add-ins tab.
  • Select Dictate inside Inactive/Disabled Application Add-ins section.
  • Click on Go and check Dictate in the checklist. Click OK.

I installed Dictate, but no text appears when I start speaking. What's wrong?

Please do the following steps for diagnostics.

  • Verify that Dictate version, 32-bit vs 64-bit matches with Office version (Most common reason).
  • Verify your internet connectivity.
  • Verify that the microphone is connected, and is turned on.
  • When you click on mic button in Dictate, a red dot should appear next to mic icon.
  • When you speak, verify that the cursor is placed on the text pane of the Office app.
  • After speaking a sentence, pause for a couple of seconds to see the text output. Sometimes, the first response is a little delayed.

I see the same dictation output typed twice or thrice. What should I do?

Most likely, you have started several dictation sessions from single/multiple Office app(s).

  • Please save your work and close all Office apps.
  • Reopen Word/PowerPoint/Outlook.
  • Start a new dictation session.
  • Turn off the dictation when you are done.

Any tips to improve the dictation experience?

  • Although not necessary, a dedicated headset is recommended. It will help to improve the accuracy of dictation.
  • It’s also recommended to momentarily pause between two sentences.
  • Clear pronunciation is expected to yield better results.

How do I uninstall Dictate?

Go to Control Panel and click on Uninstall a Program. Find Dictate in the list of programs and click Uninstall. Follow the on-screen instruction for completing the uninstall.

Does Dictate work for Office apps such as OneNote?

We currently support dictation in Outlook, Word and PowerPoint. While we don’t have the OneNote add-in yet, you can enable dictation in OneNote using the free Learning Tools plugin from Microsoft.

Is Dictate supported on Mac OS or iOS?

At present, only Windows versions of Office are supported. We look forward to expand the capabilities of this plugin to other platforms.

What languages do we support for dictation?

We support Arabic, Chinese, Danish, Dutch, English (Australia, Canada, India, UK, US), Finnish, French (Canada, France), German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish (Mexico, Spain) and Swedish for dictation. We plan to add more languages in the future.

I do not want Dictate to insert puntuations for me, how do I turn it off?

Select Manual Punctuation button (disabled during dictation) before starting the dictation. If you are dictating in English, you can use manual punctuation commands, listed below.

Which commands are available and for what languages?

The following commands are available while dictating. Currently, they are available only for English.

  • New Line: Takes cursor to a new line.
  • Delete: Removes the last line you dictated.
  • Stop Dictation: Terminates the dictation session.
We also support a manual punctuation mode where we support dictating following punctuation commands.
  • Full stop or period: Types period character (.)
  • Question mark: Types (?)
  • Open Quote: Types (“).
  • Close Quote: Types (”).
  • Colon: Types (:).
  • Stop Dictation: Terminates the dictation session.

Is it possible to do machine level installation instead of user level?

Use following set up files to install Dictate at machine level, it means all the users of computer will be able to use Dictate, once installed. You will need admin rights on computer to install.

When I open outlook, I get error message "Error found in Custom UI of "OutlookDictation64"?

Some of users are getting this error, we have fixed this in new version, please uninstall your current Dictate and install new one from here

I have Office 2013 64 bit, I always get error "Unable to start microphone client?

We have found out that Dictate is not working for some users with 64 bit of Office 2013, we recommend you uninstall your current Dictate and install new one from here

  • Download for Office 32-bit
  • Download for Office 64-bit
  • If you are getting error "Authorization failed. Please check Internet connectivity/Proxy settings/Firewall settings.", it means there is some issue with your network or proxy settings
  • Try using Dictate on some other network.

I have a new feature request for Dictate. Should I send it to dictate@microsoft.com?

Yes, absolutely. We love to hear back from you. The popular feature requests we have received so far are:

  • Support languages such as Bengali, Hebrew, and Malay.
  • Support dictation commands for languages other than English.
  • Support more punctuations such as braces, parenthesis, and hyphens.