Google TalkBack Update Brings Significant Improvements to The Accessibility App

Google TalkBack for Android has a new update rolling out that brings some new services and features to the accessibility app.  For those who may not know what TalkBack is, it is designed for the blind or visually impaired to be able to use their Android device as the content on the screen is read back to them.  This new update brings a new Speech Verbosity feature that allows users to choose just how much feedback is spoken to them.  Before this update, TalkBack read everything on the screen.  Now you can be a bit more selective with it which should speed things up a bit.

Another improvement is the ability to hear feedback when screen magnification is turned on as well as hearing character count in password fields.  This feature requires that you have at least Chrome 56 on your device to work.

A new Select to Speak feature is also in this update to Google TalkBack.  Setup through the Accessibility settings, the setting allows users to tap an item to hear about them.  Also, support for earcons

Google TalkBack Settings
Google TalkBack Settings

is now available.  Earcons are brief, distinctive sound used to represent a specific event or convey other information.  This is something that has been available on desktop Operating Systems but has now come to Android through this update.

The update is rolling out in the Play Store now and should be hitting devices via an OTA update over the course of the next few days.