Read.ai Review & Alternatives for 2024

Read.ai is an AI-powered tool designed to optimize meeting productivity through automated transcription, analysis, and action item tracking. Yet another meeting recorder, we thought… And still, in our crazy ways, we decided to review it.

Founded in 2021, Read.ai quickly established itself as a well-known player in the AI-driven productivity space. The tool is geared towards professionals aiming to streamline meeting documentation and derive actionable insights. With its advanced features and competitive pricing, Read.ai has presented itself as a valuable asset for businesses looking to enhance operational efficiency.

In this blog we’ll break down how Read.ai fares from our own tests, but also what other people are saying online. Then we’ll take a look at some Read.ai alternatives for you to look at for yourself as well.

Table of Contents

In-Depth Read.ai Review

Read.ai top features

Read.ai offers a comprehensive suite of features aimed at improving meeting productivity, including real-time transcription, sentiment analysis, action item detection, and AI-driven insights.

The platform supports multiple video conferencing tools such as Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams. People who use Read.ai can benefit from detailed transcription services and sentiment analysis to gauge the emotional tone of meetings. However, the free model restricts users from watching meeting videos again, and there is no prevention against deletion, which can lead to gaps in records.

Additionally, our experience indicates that Read.ai’s sentiment analysis has the potential to miss out on certain cultural nuances. 

While Read.ai, along with other tools out there, is a global brand, we found that sometimes the sentiment analysis misinterpreted engagement levels during conversations with individuals from different nationalities. When the tool flagged that someone was “less” engaged this was not always the case.  This is something to be mindful of when working not only with people from different cultures, but potentially even those who are neurodiverse etc. 

Read.ai usability – surprise led to disappointment…

Read.ai is designed to have an intuitive interface, but we found it a little challenging to find out how to add it into meetings and manage its permissions. There is a small box that you can add the meeting link into, if you haven’t been invited directly from the platrofmr (it can integrate directly with your calendar).

We also noticed a slight delay in receiving emails to say it was going to be in the meeting and we found we couldn’t easily eject the bot from a meeting we were in, which was a little frustrating.

While the dashboard is user-friendly, features like coaching and it’s elements such as charisma scoring felt a little vague and not very informative for what we were using it for. It was interesting, but it wasn’t clear as to what benefit it had for an internal meeting. We also found that the interest scoring made it seem like some participants weren’t engaged in the meeting, when typically these were the more introverted people we spoke with. This could be accurate, but it felt very much measured on how animated someone was which may not be an accurate marker for everybody.

The quality of the transcription was good, although we found that it missed out a number of words that were more colloquial. But it does offer some custom vocabulary options, these are limited though.

One thing we found a little frustrating was, on the free plan, when the meeting concluded that you could get the transcription but not the video or audio. This is ok, but where there were some nuances and inaccuracies in the transcription and analytics, without the video to cross check this could cause some issuse. This is also not even available on the Premium plan. Instead you need to opt for the Enterprise plan to get video playback.

Read.ai competitive pricing

Read.ai offers a tiered pricing model to cater to various user needs. The basic plan is free, with limited transcription minutes, while the paid plans offer more extensive features and higher transcription limits. The pricing is competitive, with the higher-tier plans providing advanced features like custom vocabulary, and enhanced integration options. There are no significant hidden costs, making the pricing structure transparent and straightforward. Prices range from $19.75 per month/per license for Premium (capped at 4 hours) to $39.75 per month/per license for Enterprise+. For full details see the section below for full pricing models. 

Performance without hiccups

Read.ai generally performs well in terms of speed, reliability, and efficiency. Real-time transcription is fast and accurate, capturing conversations with minimal lag. However, as we mentioned, occasional misinterpretations in nuanced tones have been noted. Overall, Read.ai is reliable and efficient, allowing users to focus on meeting content without technical disruptions.

Read.ai’s customer support is up to the task

Read.ai has a solid customer support offering through a comprehensive knowledge base, live chat, and email support. The response times are quick, and the support team is knowledgeable. Users on higher-tier plans may receive prioritized support, ensuring prompt resolution of issues. This makes Read.ai a reliable choice for businesses requiring dependable assistance.

Integration with Other Tools

Read.ai integrates well with various tools and platforms, enhancing its utility in different workflows. It supports major video conferencing tools, calendar applications, and CRM systems. The platform’s API allows for custom integrations, making it adaptable to specific business needs. This interoperability ensures that Read.ai can fit seamlessly into existing tech stacks, improving overall productivity.

Security and Privacy

Read.ai’s security measures are solid but there are a few gray areas from what we can see. On the site, it states that clients needing to adhere to GDPR can use it, but does not explicitly ensure compliance. Additionally, the sentiment analysis feature does not comply with the EU AI Act, raising concerns about data protection and regulatory adherence.

User Feedback

User feedback on Read.ai is mixed. Many users praise its ease of use, transcription accuracy, and valuable insights. However, common criticisms include occasional inaccuracies in the transcription spelling, challenges when it comes to privacy policies of the business when it comes to confidential call. There are also a few complaints that even when you cancel it won’t stop joining meetings. Additionally, the limitations of the free model, such as the inability to rewatch meeting videos and lack of deletion prevention, are points of concern. 

read.ai gdpr policy
Source: Read.ai GDPR policy

Pros and Cons of Read.ai


Pros

  • Comprehensive Features: Read.ai provides a rich set of features including real-time transcription, sentiment analysis, action item detection, and AI-driven insights, compatible with various video conferencing tools like Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams.
  • User-Friendly Interface: The platform is designed with an intuitive and well-organized dashboard, making it accessible for users with varying technical skills.
  • Integration Capabilities: Seamlessly integrates with numerous tools and platforms, enhancing its utility across different workflows.
  • Competitive Pricing: Offers a transparent tiered pricing model that includes a free plan and reasonably priced higher-tier options.
  • Reliable Customer Support: Provides responsive and knowledgeable support through a comprehensive knowledge base, live chat, and email.

Cons

  • Cultural Sensitivity Issues: Our experience indicates that Read.ai’s sentiment analysis lacks cultural nuance, which can lead to misinterpretations in diverse cultural contexts.
  • Usability Challenges: Some users find it challenging to integrate Read.ai into meetings and manage permissions, with delays in permission emails and a complex process to remove it from meetings.
  • Free Model Limitations: The free plan restricts users from rewatching meeting videos and lacks prevention against deletion, leading to potential gaps in records. Equally, even the paid-for Premium plan feels a bit lacking as well.
  • Security and Compliance Concerns: Compliance with GDPR is vague, and the sentiment analysis feature does not adhere to the EU AI Act, raising data protection and regulatory concerns.
  • Feature Vagueness: Coaching and charisma analysis features are cool but not super clear about what the purpose is reducing their practical utility.
  • Individual Licensing: For the lower tiers users need to purchase licenses on an individual basis rather than at the business level, complicating team management as the team cannot directly add users. You need to pay for a Workspace and then add the users in. Also, based on what we have seen the individual users own the content rather than the organization, which can further complicate data management​.

Pricing Plans


Read.ai offers several pricing tiers to cater to different user needs:

  • Free Plan: Limited to 10 meetings per month with core features like transcription, summaries, personalized coaching, and meeting metrics.
  • Pro Plan: $19.75 per month (or $15 per month with annual payment). Includes all free features plus unlimited meetings (restricted to 4 hours of recording), integrations, workspaces, and customized content. 
  • Enterprise Plan: $29.75 per month (or $22.50 per month with annual payment). Includes all Pro features plus video playback and highlights.
  • Enterprise+ Plan: $39.75 per month (or $29.75 per month with annual payment). Includes all Enterprise features plus additional security features like data retention policies, domain capture, and SAML support.
read.ai pricing
Source: Read.ai pricing

So, is Read.ai worth it, or not?

Read.ai is solid with its comprehensive features, user-friendly interface, and seamless integration capabilities, making it a valuable tool for enhancing meeting productivity. 

The competitive pricing and reliable customer support further strengthen its appeal. 

However, challenges such as cultural sensitivity in sentiment analysis, usability issues, and limitations in the free model need addressing. Additionally, vague security and compliance measures raise concerns for those who may operate out of certain gegoraphies, or require a higher level of security oor compliance.

Read.ai alternatives

Selecting the right AI meeting assistant can transform how you manage meetings and collaborate with your team. Although Read.ai is a popular choice, it’s worth exploring other tools that might offer features more closely aligned with your needs. Different options provide unique functionalities, integrations, and pricing plans that could better fit your workflow and budget.

In evaluating alternatives, we considered several important criteria: compatibility with popular meeting platforms (Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet), the quality of AI-driven transcription and summarization, integration with CRM systems, ease of use, and pricing flexibility. Additionally, features like smart AI coaching, real-time collaboration, and accessibility across devices were taken into account to ensure a thorough comparison. By examining these alternatives, you can find a tool that enhances your meeting efficiency and supports your specific requirements.

Here are four notable alternatives to Read.ai, each offering distinct features and advantages to cater to diverse user needs.

tl;dv vs Read.ai

tl;dv is a well-known online AI meeting assistant designed to optimize the productivity and efficiency of sales teams, though its versatile features make it suitable for various roles. Compatible with popular platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet, tl;dv is often compared to Read.ai for its advanced capabilities. This tool allows users to record, transcribe, timestamp, edit, and analyze calls seamlessly within one comprehensive package.

One of tl;dv’s standout features is its ability for users to ask the AI questions about every meeting in the database, and to create specialized reports that are customized to your exact needs and requirements. Users can also create mini reels of key insights quickly, making it incredibly easy to share critical information with the wider team, including customer success and development teams.

The tool’s AI ensures constant improvement and adaptation to user needs. The timestamps feature allows sales reps to revisit significant moments from calls, enhancing their follow-up actions. Colleagues can easily cover for out-of-office reps by accessing the full context of client or prospect relationships through recorded and timestamped meetings. This preparedness translates into better client management and higher close rates for sales teams.

One thing that stands out is that. tl;dv fosters transparency across organizations by creating a library of accessible calls. These can be shared with key stakeholders in a matter of minutes, providing them with valuable insights without the need to attend every meeting.

As an AI meeting assistant, tl;dv goes beyond mere transcription. It integrates smoothly with popular CRM systems like Hubspot and Salesforce, ensuring that all important moments are linked directly within CRM profiles. This integration streamlines the sales process, making it more efficient and effective.

With smart AI coaching features on the horizon for sales and other eparmtnets, tl;dv is set to offer even more value to its users. This upcoming feature will provide real-time feedback and recommendations during sales calls, enhancing the quality of interactions and increasing the likelihood of successful outcomes. Combined with its current offerings, tl;dv is poised to be a leader in AI-driven meeting management solutions.

Pros

  • AI driven by GPT, continuously improved
  • Automatic transcription and recording of all sales calls and meetings
  • Compatible with Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet
  • Timestamps for fast revisitation of key points
  • Direct CRM integrations (Hubspot, Salesforce)
  • Create clips for training, feedback, and onboarding
  • Clips for topic-specific reels from all meetings
  • Encourages organizational transparency with accessible call libraries
  • Simple, intuitive interface with excellent onboarding
  • Free version available

Cons

  • Not exclusively for salespeople, can be used in various roles
  • Isn’t compatible with Webex or Blue Jeans

Pricing

Free plan available. Pro version starts at $20 per month per user, or their Business tier at $59.00 per user per month including AI coaching, playbooks and much more.

Check out our tl;dv vs Read.ai article here. 

Otter.ai vs Read.ai

Otter.ai was one of the original automatic note-taking and transcription services. While many other tools such as Read.ai and tl;dv have appeared, they remain a significant player in the industry.

Otter primarily focuses on English speech-to-text transcription and note-taking. In more recent years, they introduced OtterPilot and Otter AI Chat, advanced AI features that allow querying across multiple meetings, generating summaries, extracting key points, and facilitating collaboration during and after meetings. However, Otter does not offer options for selecting subsets of meetings for prompts or scheduling recurring reports like tl;dv.

Otter.ai is widely recognized for its ability to provide live captions during Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams calls, a feature that enhances accessibility and inclusivity in meetings. It integrates smoothly with popular platforms such as Salesforce, HubSpot, and Slack, making it a versatile tool for various professional settings. The collaborative aspect of Otter allows multiple people to join the same account and work together on transcriptions and notes, facilitating teamwork and ensuring that important information is captured accurately.

Despite its strengths, Otter.ai has some limitations. It supports only English, which can be a barrier for non-English speaking users. Additionally, it lacks video recording functionality, which some users might find restrictive compared to more comprehensive tools like tl;dv. Accents and dialects can pose challenges for Otter’s transcription accuracy, and the free plan does not include chat support, which could be a drawback for users requiring immediate assistance. Otter’s integration options, while broad, are not as extensive as some competitors, limiting its versatility in certain workflows.

Overall, Otter.ai remains a valuable tool for speech-to-text transcription, particularly for users who primarily need English language support and straightforward transcription services. However, for users seeking more advanced features and broader language support, alternatives like tl;dv and Read.ai might offer a more comprehensive solution.

Pros

  • Live captions during Zoom calls
  • Integrates with Zoom, Google Meet, and more
  • Otter Chat offers AI prompting in single and multiple meetings
  • Multiple people can join the same account to collaborate

Cons

  • Only supports English
  • No video functionality
  • Struggles with accents
  • No chat support on the free plan
  • Limited integration options

Pricing

Otter.ai offers various pricing plans. The free plan includes basic features, while paid plans provide advanced functionalities. Going to the paid-for levels users can expect to pay $16.99 USD per user per month, but this is capped at 1200 monthly transcription minutes and 90 minutes per conversation.

Check out our tl;dv vs Otter.ai comparison as well.

Fireflies.ai vs Read.ai

Fireflies.ai offers meeting recording, note-taking, and an advanced AI-powered search function. Competing with tools like Read.ai, it provides extensive integrations and powerful search capabilities. Fireflies.ai is an excellent choice for teams that rely heavily on CRM data to manage their sales processes and customer interactions.

One of the strong suits of Fireflies.ai is its facilitation of team collaboration. The tool allows users to comment on and react to meeting notes, creating a dynamic and interactive environment for discussing key points. It also supports different playback speeds, making it easier to revisit important sections of meetings without having to go through the entire recording.

However, Fireflies.ai has its drawbacks. The video recording feature requires a paid plan, which may not be ideal for users on a tight budget. Additionally, while Fireflies.ai offers speaker identification, it may not be as advanced or reliable as some users expect. The free plan is also quite limited, offering only basic features and a limited amount of storage.

Despite these limitations, Fireflies.ai remains a strong contender in the AI meeting assistant space. Its robust integration options and powerful AI features make it a valuable tool for teams looking to streamline their meeting processes and improve collaboration.

Pros

  • Extensive integrations, including Salesforce
  • Advanced AI-powered search
  • Excellent for team collaboration
  • Compatible with Google Meet, Zoom, MS Teams, and more

Cons

  • Paid video recording ($19/month plan required)
  • Limited speaker recognition
  • Limited free plan

Pricing

Paid plans start at $10 per month per user (billed annually). The free plan includes:

  • Limited transcription credits
  • 800 mins of storage
  • Recording on various platforms
  • Automated meeting summaries
  • Search within meetings
  • Different playback speeds
  • Comments and reactions
  • Clip creation
  • Uploads
  • 3 public channels

The Pro version is needed for AI-generated summaries and unlimited transcripts, while the Business Plan ($19/month) is required for video recording and additional advanced features

Check out our tl;dv vs Fireflies.ai comparison as well.

Is Fireflies the best Rev competitor?

Fathom vs Read.ai

Fathom is another alternative to Read.ai, and one that offers a strong free plan known for its automatic meeting summaries and action items. It integrates well with documentation tools like Google Docs, Notion, and Asana, and provides instant downloads of meeting transcripts and highlights.

Fathom’s ability to generate automatic summaries of meetings, including action items, makes it a powerful tool for professionals looking to streamline their workflow and make decisions faster. The tool’s AI can highlight key moments during calls and summarize them with a single click, saving users time and effort. This feature is particularly useful for team members who need to catch up on meetings they missed or quickly review important points.

Fathom also excels in data sharing across multiple platforms. Users can easily organize their insights and synchronize them with popular documentation tools, enhancing collaboration and ensuring that all relevant information is accessible. The instant download feature ensures that meetings and transcripts are available immediately after a call ends, allowing for prompt follow-up and action.

Despite its strengths, Fathom is currently compatible only with Zoom, MS Teams, and Google Meet. This might be restrictive for users who rely on other meeting platforms, but it offers robust features for those who primarily use these supported services.

Fathom’s free plan is one of the best in the market, providing ample functionality for personal use. For team use, a paid plan is required, which starts at $19 per month per user after a two-week free trial. This makes Fathom a cost-effective option for teams looking to leverage advanced AI meeting assistant features without breaking the bank.

Pros

  • Automatic meeting summaries, including action items
  • Easy data sharing across multiple platforms
  • AI-generated highlights with simple click summaries
  • Instant download of meetings and transcripts
  • Free personal use, 2-week free trial for team version

Cons

  • Users have reported occasional glitches when using MS Teams and Google Meet

Pricing

Free for personal use. Team plan starts at $19 per month per user after a 2-week free trial

Check out our tl;dv vs Fathom comparison as well.

Fathom website

Ok, is Read.ai any good?

To wrap this Read.ai review up, we have to say that Read.ai is indeed a strong contender in the AI meeting assistant space, offering valuable features like real-time transcription, sentiment analysis, and action item tracking. Its user-friendly design and smooth integration with popular video conferencing tools and CRMs make it a useful tool for businesses looking to streamline their meetings. That said, there are a few areas where Read.ai could improve and more powerful alternatives to choose from. 

The sentiment analysis sometimes lacks cultural sensitivity, which can lead to misinterpretations. Managing permissions can also be a bit tricky, and the free plan has limitations, like not being able to rewatch meeting videos or prevent deletion. Additionally, the platform’s security and compliance measures need more clarity, particularly regarding GDPR and the EU AI Act.

Overall, Read.ai has a lot to offer, but if you’re looking for a more comprehensive solution, it’s worth exploring other options. One standout alternative is tl;dv. It not only provides advanced features like real-time transcription and AI-driven insights but also excels in creating mini reels of key insights, making it easy to share important information quickly. Its seamless integration with popular platforms and CRM systems, along with an intuitive interface and competitive pricing, make tl;dv a top choice for enhancing meeting productivity.

In the end, it really comes down to what works best for you and your team. Evaluate your needs, explore the options, and choose the tool that fits your workflow and budget the best.

tl;dv for Sales
Spend your time where it matters most. Uncover Sales intelligence and track how well your team follows your Playbooks. tl;dv is an AI Meeting Assistant that helps you (finally) get insights from all your meetings, right in your team's favorite tools.
Recordings & Transcripts (+30 languages)
Onboard new reps with ease
Evaluate your meetings against popular frameworks like MEDDIC, BANT and more
Create your own framework
Automatically push your meeting notes to your favourite CRM
Speaker insights to help you keep control of your meetings
  • Joins your meetings, even if you don’t.
  • Records and transcribes in +30 languages.
  • Takes notes in your preferred structure.
  • Summarize one or multiple meetings.
  • Auto updates your favourite tools (Slack, Notion, CRM, etc).
  • Provides coaching insights on your meeting style.
Running late to your next meeting?
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