Text-to-speech (TTS) is the software that converts text into spoken content. You can customise the text-to-speech voice output to make it easier to follow.
You can change how much spoken feedback you get when you select an item or navigate your device. Select Verbosity to customise your settings.
By default, Verbosity is set to Custom. This gives you full control over what feedback you receive. Select an item to set the toggle switch to On or Off.
If you prefer, you can use a preset to determine how much feedback you receive. Select Choose a preset and choose from the options:
If your device has a proximity sensor lifting your device to your ear will silence TalkBack. This setting is On by default. To disable it, select Use proximity sensor to set the toggle switch to Off.
Shake your device to start continuously reading aloud the items on the screen. To enable this setting, select Shake to start continuous reading and choose from the options:
By default, TalkBack reads aloud the characters of a password as you enter them. To disable this setting, select Speak passwords to set the toggle switch to Off. Note: you will still be able to hear the password read aloud when you are wearing headphones.
Your device will vibrate when you select an item. To enable this setting, select Vibration feedback to set the toggle switch to On.
Hear audio feedback when you select an item or navigate the screen. To enable this setting:
Decrease the volume of other media playing on your device. This setting is On by default. To disable it, select Audio ducking to set the toggle switch to Off.
TalkBack will automatically scroll lists up the screen. This setting is On by default. To disable it, select Automatically scroll lists to set the toggle switch to Off.
By default, you have to double-tap the highlighted item to activate it. To switch to using a single-tap, select Single-tap activation to set the toggle switch to On. Note: This feature is experimental that may not always work as expected.
By default, the Talkback menus are a list of items. You slide your finger up and down the list to hear the options. You can change this to circular menus, where you slide your finger in a circular motion to hear the options. To do so, select Show context menu as list to set the toggle switch to Off.
You can navigate your device by swiping your finger in different directions across the screen. To change the action associated a gesture:
If your device has a fingerprint sensor you can use the sensor to edit some of the TalkBack settings.
To use the fingerprint sensor to edit settings:
If you have a keyboard connected to your device, you can use keyboard shortcuts to move between items. These key combinations are known as keymaps. You can choose between two sets of keymaps: Default and Classic. The Default keymap has a lot more shortcuts. The Classic keymap allows you to edit a shortcut associated with an action.
To customise Keyboard shortcuts:
See Google’s comprehensive list of TalkBack keyboard shortcuts.
Here you can manage any custom labels you have created through the local context menu. You can also import or export existing labels. Select to manage your custom labels.
Hear a spoken description when you touch an item on the screen. This setting is On by default. If you disable Explore by touch you won't be able to use shortcut gestures to navigate. Nor will you receive spoken feedback when you touch an item. Select Explore by touch to set the toggle switch to Off.
When you move to a new screen the first focusable item will be focused. When you go back to a screen you have visited before, the last item you selected will become focused. This setting is On by default. To disable it, select Enhanced focus to set the toggle switch to Off.
To see if there is an updated version of TalkBack, select Open TalkBack at the Play Store.
Select TalkBack tutorial to run through the TalkBack lessons again.
Note: we have written these instructions for devices running the standard version of the Android operating system. You may find some minor presentation differences if the manufacturer has customised the theme.