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Google Adds a ‘Mic Notification’ Accessibility Settings on Android

Bipasha Mandal
Bipasha Mandal
Bipasha Mondal is writer at TechGenyz

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A few years back, Google announced the Google Accessibility feature with one aim in mind – everyone should have access to the web and various other things across the barrier. After its initial announcement and the inclusion of the feature into the various core Google apps, the aforementioned Accessibility settings have come a long way. Initially, this setting was limited to Smart Displays and speakers, but the promise of easily accessing the web ideally should also spread across the spectrum of devices available; that is to say, it should be available on various devices.

As such, Google is finally bringing the Accessibility settings for Assistant on Android. However, the exact functionality of the settings remains unclear at this moment.

Heading into Assistant settings (via the Google app) today reveals the addition of an “Accessibility” menu just under “Hey Google” sensitivity. The description says this is to provide “Support for vision, hearing, motor, and cognitive impairments.” The recently added menu is not very visible when the Google app’s dark theme is applied. This is due to the presence of a bug. Google also offers it by default, “Mic-on notification” and “Mic-close notification” are enabled. “Availability” is listed as “Android 6.0+ Phones.”

What these options actually control is not known yet. The utterance of the command prompts “Ok Google” or “Hey Google” would enable the device to make a sound. Also, when the device is done listening to the user’s request, the user would get to hear a sound.

One possible explanation for this could be the fact that the features are not live yet, especially because enabling or disabling them makes no difference on the new Google Assistant (NGA) or the regular one on non-Pixel devices. Now that with the inclusion of the Assistant description, Google is very likely to add more accessibility settings in the near future.

Other recent additions to the Assistant settings page include “Photos,” “Lock screen,” and “Your apps.”


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