Benefits of Using System.Speech

Speech is an effective and natural way for people to interact with applications, complementing or even replacing the use of mice, keyboards, controllers, and gestures. A hands-free, yet accurate way to communicate with applications, speech lets people be productive and stay informed in a variety of situations where other interfaces will not.

The System.Speech managed-code namespaces in the .NET Framework provide you with easy access to Microsoft's advanced speech recognition and speech synthesis technologies in Windows. Because speech engines are built in to Windows Vista and later versions of Windows, you do not need to create your own engines for speech recognition and text-to-speech. See Microsoft .NET Framework 4 to download the .NET Framework.

You can implement speech recognition in one of two ways in System.Speech: shared or in-process. The shared recognizer in Windows can be used by any open application that implements the System.Speech namespaces. With in-process recognition, the speech recognizer runs in the same thread as the application and is under its control. See Speech Recognition.

The speech synthesis APIs in System.Speech will have your application talking with just a few lines of code. You get control over many aspects of voice expression, including volume, speaking rate, word emphasis, pitch contour, and other attributes of speech. See Speech Synthesis.

For both speech recognition and speech synthesis, you get your choice of authoring formats. You can author content programmatically, using the members of the System.Speech namespaces. Or you can create industry-standard, XML-format speech documents for consumption by the System.Speech APIs. You can even alternate authoring formats based on your preferences and combine programmatic content with XML-format content.

The System.Speech managed-code APIs significantly reduce the amount of work necessary to implement speech in applications for the Windows desktop. By providing access to the speech engines in Windows Vista and later versions of Windows, the System.Speech APIs provide the tools for you to create sophisticated speech applications for Windows while shortening development cycles and reducing development costs.