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Google’s Android apps get a slew of new accessibility features

Google has updated some of its Android apps with enhanced accessibility features. The search titan’s Lookout, Look to Speak, Maps, and Project Relate Android apps have received the new features. The company has released new features to celebrate the 13th Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD). The new updates coincide with Apple’s newly introduced accessibility features, including Eye Tracking, Vocal Shortcuts, and Live captions. Apple announced the new functionalities just a day before Google.

Google adds Find mode to the Lookout Android app to offer more accessibility features

Lookout is one of Google’s Android apps to get new accessibility features. The app is designed to help blind and low-vision Android users identify objects around them and read documents. The company has now released a new Find mode for Lookout, which provides a new way to find specific objects.

The feature is currently rolling out in beta version and allows identifying items from seven categories – like seating and tables or bathroom. The Lookout app will now tell you how far you are from the selected object and which directions to go as you scan the room with your phone’s camera. Notably, the updated Lookout app now also offers an AI-generated description of an image you capture directly within it.

Lookout Find ModeLookout Find Mode

Google’s Look to Speak, Maps, and Project Relate apps are also getting new functionalities

Apart from Lookout, Google has also enhanced the accessibility capabilities of the Look to Speak, Maps, and Project Relate applications on Android. The app allows you to choose prewritten & customized phrases with your eyes. Once you select the phrase, it is spoken aloud. In the new update, there’s a new text-free mode. It lets users also select personalized emojis, symbols, and photos in the phrases.

As for the other apps, Maps on Android and iOS allows users to easily filter reviews, which are related to wheelchair accessibility. Notably, the company is also adding wheelchair accessibility information to Maps on desktop devices.

The brand has updated the Project Relate Android app, which helps users with speech impairments to speak. The new update to the app lets users import text from other apps to create custom prompts for voice training. The company will be releasing more accessibility features for its Android apps in the near future.

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