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Snapchat is working on a new auto-captions feature to improve accessibility

Bipasha Mandal
Bipasha Mandal
Bipasha Mondal is writer at TechGenyz

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Accessibility has been of main concern as of late. Every other social media platform is working towards making its apps more accessible to everyone, especially those with disabilities. Although the year is 2021, some of the apps are playing catch-up to finally making their apps accessible to most. One such app is Snapchat. Recently it came to light that the social media platform is finally working on a new auto-captioning feature.

Nowadays, even on platforms as old as Facebook, there has been a rise in the number of videos added and played every day. Instagram’s latest addition called Reels only intensified this phenomenon. Previously, TikTok was also one of the leading apps to make short video-based content more popular. But what made TikTok different from the other apps was its captioning feature. This gave people with impaired hearing access to the content. Additionally, it was only last year that Instagram too introduced the auto-captioning function to its Reels.

However, it should be mentioned here that this is not exactly the first time that Snapchat has added such a feature. Previously, the social media platform had quietly added a caption button that Discover publishers can use to make their videos audio-optional. What it meant was that when a publisher makes the option available, people can click the button to add subtitles on the video in order to watch the video without having to turn on the sound. This had limited capacity; moreover, this feature was exclusive within Discover. If Snapchat had any plans of extending this function to other videos within Snapchat, such as Live stories or individuals’ stories, was never clear.

Although Snapchat has not officially mentioned anything about the new feature, the applicability of the auto functioning remains in question. As the developers are still working on it, it is not clear yet if the auto-captioning function will be made available for live videos as well.


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