How to Get Quick and Accurate Zoom Live Transcription
how to get Zoom live transcription

How to Get Quick and Accurate Zoom Live Transcription

Michael DamJun 30, 20229 mins
What is Zoom Live Transcription

Have you ever been in a meeting that seems to be running around in circles? Where everyone leaves looking like human question marks? 

We might not have a magical wand, but live transcription of your Zoom meetings increases the chances of a productive meeting where everyone actively participates instead of secretly scrolling Airbnb listings for their upcoming vacation.

What is Zoom Live Transcription

Zoom live transcription means real-time generation of subtitles as someone speaks in a Zoom meeting. The advantages are many: increased engagement, clarity, and ease of retaining the information. It also increases the accessibility – for example, for those who find it hard to focus or have a hearing impairment. 

Zoom has its built-in functionality for live transcription. However, as we’ll see below, it comes with limitations. 

And that was the motivation behind Airgram!

There are two ways to use live transcription on Zoom with Airgram: for instant meetings (using the link to your or someone else’s Zoom room) or scheduled appointments. 

Airgram comes with features like speaker detection which automatically adds the name of the speaker in the shared notes. Plus, you get access to templates to plan the meeting for maximal efficiency, and the possibility to assign tasks to participants to turn words into action.

In this complete guide on how to enable Zoom live transcriptions, we’ll guide you through all the different approaches. Let’s dive in!

Enable Live Transcription on Zoom 

There are three ways of enabling Zoom live transcription. The first one is the built-in feature in Zoom. Free of charge for users of the service, the transcription functionality can be useful – but it comes with limitations (see below).

Account: Activate Zoom live transcription for all users of an account

To enable Zoom live transcription for all users of an account, please complete the following steps:

  1. Log in to the Zoom web portal as an admin with the privilege to edit account settings.

  2. Click Account Management > Account Settings in the navigation menu.

  3. Click the Meeting tab.

  4. Under In Meeting (Advanced), you’ll find a toggle for Automated captions. Enable this to activate live transcription. 

  5. Depending on your browser settings, a verification dialog may pop up. Click Enable to confirm your changes. 

  6. (Optional) You have the option to make this setting mandatory for all users in your account by clicking the lock symbol and then Lock to confirm changes.

  7. (Optional – only available on Zoom versions 5.7.0 or higher): Allow use of caption API Token to integrate with 3rd-party Closed Captioning services and allow viewing of full transcript in the in-meeting side panel. 

Group: Activate Zoom live transcription for a group of users

  1. Log in to the Zoom web portal as an admin with the privilege to edit groups.

  2. Click User Management > Group Management in the navigation menu.

  3. Click the group name for which you want to enable live captions in the list.

  4. Click the Meeting tab.

  5. Under In Meeting (Advanced), click the Automated caption to enable live transcription for all users in the group.

  6. If a verification dialog pops up, click Enable to verify your choice. If the option is grayed out, the change needs to be done at the account level.

  7. (Optional) You have the option to make this setting mandatory for all users in your account by clicking the lock symbol and then Lock to confirm changes.

  8. (Optional – only available on Zoom versions 5.7.0 or higher): Allow use of caption API Token to integrate with 3rd-party Closed Captioning services and allow viewing of full transcript in the in-meeting side panel. 

User: Activate Zoom live transcription only for your account 

This setting allows you to enable Zoom live transcription exclusively for your own use.

  1. Log in to the Zoom web portal.

  2. Click Settings in the navigation menu.

  3. Click the Meeting tab.

  4. Under In Meeting (Advanced), you’ll find a toggle for Automated captions. Enable this to activate live transcription. 

  5. Depending on your browser settings, a verification dialog may pop up. Click Enable to confirm your changes. 

  6. (Optional) You have the option to make this setting mandatory for all users in your account by clicking the lock symbol and then Lock to confirm changes.

  7. (Optional – only available on Zoom versions 5.7.0 or higher): Allow use of caption API Token to integrate with 3rd-party Closed Captioning services and allow viewing of full transcript in the in-meeting side panel. 

As mentioned, there are limitations to this feature (disclaimer: we’re not trying to roast other options. These factors are listed on the official Zoom site, which nobly recommends third party services – like Airgram – to guarantee accuracy). 

For example, Zoom live transcription currently only supports English. It is also relatively sensitive to background noise and can fail to properly capture dialects or specific vocabulary related to your industry. Also, viewing the transcription in the in-meeting side panel requires Zoom version 5.7.0 or higher. 

These constraints may motivate you to seek a third party service for your transcription needs. So let’s look at how to enable Zoom live transcription on Airgram!

How to Enable Zoom Live Transcription on Airgram - For scheduled Zoom meetings

Learning how to enable Zoom live transcription on Airgram – with support for eight different languages – takes less time than going to the coffee machine to get a cup of java. 

Let’s start with scheduled meetings. Note that you need to accept the Zoom meeting so that it’s available in your Google calendar where Airgram detects it. 

Manually set up the live transcription

  1. Log in to Airgram and locate your calendar in the side menu.

  1. Find the scheduled meeting in your calendar and click the “Take Notes” button. You will be redirected to a new page. 

  1. Click the “Start Zoom Call” button to start the meeting. 

  1. The Airgram bot will be asking to join the meeting (like any guest). Make sure to admit it.

  2. The recording and live transcription will begin automatically. 

Auto join Zoom for live transcription

While the above steps aren’t that time consuming, we love optimizations – and when your calendar is blued out with meetings, every saved second is valuable (more coffee, anyone?). 

That’s when the auto join feature comes in handy. 

So how do you allow your Airgram bot to join Zoom automatically? There are three different ways: allowing the bot to auto join 

  • All meetings you host 

  • All calendar events with Zoom links

  • Only scheduled meetings with the Airgram bot added as a guest. 

Join all Zoom meetings you host

This setting will automatically allow the bot to join any Zoom meeting where you are the host. 

  1. Go to Settings (in the bottom left corner when clicking on the avatar) > Zoom Meeting > Auto join Zoom meeting. Note that you need to connect Airgram to your Zoom account before completing this step.

  1. In the dropdown, select “Join all Zoom meetings I host”. The Airgram bot will now automatically join all Zoom meetings that you host.

Join all calendar events with Zoom link 

The bot will automatically join all calendar events attached with the Zoom link when you select this setting. 

  1. Go to Settings > Zoom Meeting > Auto join Zoom meeting. 

  2. Select “Join all calendar events with Zoom link” in the dropdown. The Airgram bot will automatically attend all the planned Zoom meetings.

Join selected Zoom meetings 

With this setting, the Airgram bot will only join calendar events where you have added bot@airgram.io as a guest. Notice that with this setting, the recording and transcription instantly start as soon as you admit the bot into the meeting. 

  1. Go to Settings > Zoom Meeting > Auto join Zoom meeting > choose “Join calendar events only when I invited bot@airgram.io”.

  1. Want to transcribe a specific Zoom event? Ensure that the event is in your Google calendar and has a Zoom link. Then add bot@airgram.io as a guest. 

  1. As the meeting starts, the bot will join the event and automatically start to transcribe. 

You can easily remove the bot from the call at any time and thus stop the recording and transcription.

How to Enable Zoom Live Transcription on Airgram - For Instant Zoom Calls

Need to urgently call Darren at the UK office? Airgram has your back – within seconds, you can get a transcription of those unexpected calls. 

One-click launching Zoom recording

To instantly transcribe a Zoom meeting, please follow these steps:

  1. Open Airgram > Click the “+” on the sidebar menu > Click “Quick Zoom recording”. 

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  1. Copy the Zoom link (it doesn’t matter if it’s your Zoom room or if you are the guest).

  1. Click “Start recording” – and voilà, you’ll now get live transcriptions from the Zoom meeting.

Why Use Airgram for Zoom Live Transcription

There are lots of perks with choosing Airgram for live transcription of your Zoom meetings. We admit that we might be biased – at least the people at ProductHunt agree. 

Supports mainstream video conferencing tools

The biggest software for live video calls and meetings are Google Meet, Zoom, and MS Teams. Airgram is compatible with all of them – no need to learn and teach your team a new software from scratch! In a few minutes, you’re ready to record and transcribe with any of them. 

Instant automatic live transcription

Live transcription helps drive home highlights and animate the meetings. Everyone has a different learning style, and combining speech with text assures that all meeting attendees will get the information they need in their preferred way. It’s also ideal for attendees with hearing impairment. 

Collaborative note-taking functionality

The Airgram solution comes with a shared notepad area. During the meeting, all participants can edit and review notes and walk away with the key takeaways for instant implementation and action taking. No more fuzzy meetings that leave the attendants more confused than before. 

Easily export to your favorite apps

We get that all teams have different preferences. Airgram is the open-minded meeting assistant allowing you to export notes from the Zoom meeting to your team’s notetaking software of choice. There is integrated support for all the major software solutions like Notion, Google Docs, Slack, and good old MS Word.

Summing it Up

The most common way of getting live transcription via Zoom is through the built-in feature. However, if you want a more powerful and accurate transcription, complete with interactive live features, Airgram is your go-to solution. 

Zoom transcription is possible for both scheduled and spontaneous meetings and can be enabled for single users or groups. Speaker detection helps you remember who said what. Multi-language support makes Airgram a great choice as your company expands. That way, everyone can leave the meeting feeling motivated and ready to take action.

Michael Dam

Michael started his career as a product manager and then developed a passion for writing. He has been writing on technology, remote working, productivity, etc., hoping to share his thoughts with more people.

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