First thoughts on Dragon Naturally Speaking version 13


Hello welcome to the computers with ease podcast, this podcast I am going to be talking about the newly released Dragon version 13.  I believe as of today you can order it I was lucky enough to be able to preorder it and get my copy several days ago.

I have been experimenting with the new version and so I thought I would let you in on some of my first opinions on this particular version.  I have used almost every version of Dragon since version 4.

With this particular version I found it extremely easy to set up on my computer, you can transfer existing user profiles I unfortunately had to create a brand-new one because I also got a new microphone at the same time but you can transfer and use your existing profiles.

I normally dictate into Microsoft Word, upon setting up Dragon and starting to use it it worked extremely well with no training at all right out of the box I would say I got 95% recognition.

I found that to use some of the newer features you had to be using the new version of the Dragon bar rather than the classic Dragon bar, particularly using some of the system control and command functions.

When I was in word and tried to do insert a picture into a document everything worked fine until I went to open the actual folder that had my picture, this I found difficult with Dragon and therefore went back to using the mouse in combination with the voice commands.

One of the things that I tried to do in this version which I hadn’t in earlier versions was to use my voice to open programs such as Firefox and other system commands, these works very well.

One of the other items that I was particularly happy to see in version 13 was the fact that you could use Dragon to dictate into programs such as Gmail.  In earlier versions you would dictate and if you are in something like Gmail that was not a recognized text field you got a dictation box and it would put you text in there, and then you could transfer it into whatever application you are using that Dragon didn’t recognize such as Gmail.

Although I appreciated the ability to do this having the dictation box come up and then having to transfer it into the appropriate application was an extra step and after a while it just got frustrating.  However now with the advent of being able to dictate directly into email in Gmail it’s much more conducive to actually using it for things like that, even for a very short emails.

I was glad to see that this feature had been added and at this point it does seem to work.  I’ve noticed that having your handset on and situated properly is important, I also highly recommend doing extra training even though the recognition is very good right out of the box. I found by doing an additional training and letting Dragon learn from your existing documents such as your emails and your word files for example, the recognition becomes much more consistent and over time the recognition will get better and better.

Thus making you the user much more productive with less stress and less frustration and it will be easier on your voice as well.  Overall I think Nuance the makers of Dragon have made some very good improvements to the program, and I look forward to continuing to use it and see how well it improves over time.

If you have any questions please feel free to email me at  Thank you very much.


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