Voice dictation has been a part of iOS for quite a while now, but in order to take advantage of the feature, the user must have an active Internet connection. However, some code purportedly discovered inside the iOS 7 betas suggest that that requirement could change in the future.
According to 9to5Mac, one of the new features that Apple is testing with iOS 7 is support for offline voice dictation. The site says that code buried inside the iOS 7 betas suggests that Apple is currently trying out the feature. The code, which is reportedly not present in iOS 6, includes references to "LocalDictation" and "LocalResults." The offline voice dictation functionality is said to be inactive in the public builds of the iOS 7 betas, but sources claim that devices inside of Apple's test labs have the feature enabled.
Even though smartphones have cellular connectivity and the ability to connect to Wi-Fi hotspots, sometimes we still find ourselves in situations with a weak or non-existant Internet connection. That's where this offline voice dictation would come in handy. The feature is a part of Apple's OS X Mavericks update and has been available in Android since the 4.1 Jelly Bean update, so it's good to hear that iOS users may soon gain the same functionality. Of course, Apple hasn't officially announced local dictation as a part of iOS 7 yet, so for now we'll just have to wait and see if it ends up as a surprise feature in the final build. iOS 7 is slated to be released to the public this fall.