As part of a concerted effort to improve the accessibility features of its various online services, Google now allows you to edit documents in Google Docs using your voice. Whether it's typing out a sentence or paragraph, editing text, or formatting your document, it can all now be done by barking out commands.
The idea is to make it easier for people with disabilities who can't use a keyboard or touchscreen to edit documents. Just select "Voice typing" in the "Tools" menu when using Google Docs in Chrome and start talking. In addition to jotting down your speech, Google Docs understands a wide variety of editing commands, like "insert table" and "align left," to name just two of many.
No small thing, Google points out that nearly 2 out 10 people in the U.S. will develop a disability at some point in their life, which can make it difficult to take advantage of technology.
"That’s why it’s so important to build tools to make technology accessible to everyone—from people with visual impairments who need screen readers or larger text, to people with motor restrictions that prevent them from interacting with a touch screen, to people with hearing impairments who cannot hear their device’s sounds," Google stated in a blog post.
The ability to edit documents in Google Docs using voice commands is just one of several ways Google is working to improve accessibility. It's been particularly focused on Android with the recent launch of Voice Access Beta, an app that allows people who have difficulty manipulating a touchscreen due to paralysis, tremor, temporary injury or other reasons to control their Android devices by voice. It's also made improvements for the visually impaired in Android N.