Google’s latest accessibility feature is beneficial to everyone who loves technology. It was specifically developed for users with severe impairments, but people from every walk of life love the convenience of voice activated assistance. This app lets you control your smartphone entirely by just using your voice.
This technology was developed for people who have problems with typing when using traditional computers. Even though the research and development took a while, Google’s Voice Access feature won’t take long to have a big impact outside of the intended audience. Information from I/O 2016 says that even though Google’s app is in Beta testing right now, it will be available soon to everyone.
How Google’s Voice Access Works
When Google’s Voice Access is installed on the phone, a person can only enable it by using Android’s command “Okay Google’’. After prompting Voice Access, you will have a wide range of commands to operate your phone hands free. Basic navigation commands such as Go Home or Go Back are included, but gestures such as Scroll Down and Click Okay along with text editing features will make this virtual assistant your best friend.
An impaired person only needs to tell Voice Access to tap the targets by saying the corresponding number. The numbers are meant to serve the purpose of backing up control method. An impaired person can tell what he/she wants to do by just commanding the Voice Assistant.
Any app can work together with Voice Access by following the guidelines of Google’s accessibility. Voice Access has built two important things that Google’s voice access has been working on it for a while. The first thing is natural language processing which usually allows Google Assistant to be able to understand the voice of a person. Secondly, Google’s voice access has also built important accessibility frameworks in Android.
Demonstration of Voice Access
During a demonstration at I/O 2016, the Voice Access showed off its powerful features. Returning back to the home screen, page scrolling, opening the settings and changing options were all done using the commanding Voice Access. An impaired person can also tell Voice Access to text someone; it also enables editing of the message. Twenty percent of Americans with severe, moderate motor impairment benefit greatly with Voice Access. The users have control of their Android devices without the need of using their hands. People who are temporarily or permanently disabled as well as people who commute long distances will all benefit from having Voice Access in their Android Apps.
Google has a support page for Voice Access that provides good information on getting started. It explains that you can even use the say Show All Commands to display the list of ways you can use the app to assist you. Is it just me, or is my phone already smarter than I am? Pretty soon they will be called Genius Phones instead of Smart Phones.