Use TalkBack gestures

TalkBack gestures help you navigate and perform frequent actions on your Android device. 

Single-finger & multi-finger gestures

  • Single-finger gestures are available on all devices.
  • Single-finger and multi-finger gestures are available on updated Android R, Pixel 3, and other OEM devices like Samsung Galaxy.

To check if your device supports multi-finger gestures, while TalkBack is on, three-finger tap.

  • If you get the TalkBack menu: Your device supports both multi-finger gestures and one-finger gestures.
  • If you don’t get the TalkBack menu: Your device only supports one-finger gestures. To open the TalkBack menu, swipe down then right, or swipe up and right.

Navigate your screen

Version 9.1 & up
Action One-finger gesture Multi-finger gesture
Move to the next item on the screen Right --
Move to the previous item on the screen Left

--

Explore by touch: Speaks the item below your finger Drag a finger on the screen --
Select an item Tap --
Move to the next reading control Up then down 3-finger swipe down
Move to the previous reading control Down then up 3-finger swipe up
Change the value for an item selected in reading control Up or down --

Jump to the next item

  • Follows reading controls setting
Down --

Jump to the previous item

  • Follows reading controls setting
Up --
Read from next -- 2-finger triple tap
Activate screen search Left then down --
Magnification settings Triple-tap --
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Move to the next item on the screen Right
Move to the previous item on the screen Left
Explore by touch: Speaks the item below your finger Drag a finger on the screen
Select an item Tap
Move to the next reading controls Up then down
Move to the previous reading controls Down then up
Change the value for an item selected in reading control Up or down

Jump to the next item

  • Follows reading controls setting
Down

Jump to the previous item

  • Follows reading controls setting
Up
Read from next --
Activate screen search Left then down
Magnification settings Triple-tap

Scroll the screen

Version 9.1 & up
Action Gesture Multi-finger gesture
Scroll up or down 2-finger swipe up or down --
Scroll left or right 2-finger swipe left or right --
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Scroll up or down 2-finger swipe up or down
Scroll left or right 2-finger swipe left or right

Take action on a focused item

Version 9.1 & up
Action Gesture
Activate Double-tap
Long press the focused item Double-tap and hold

Move up the slider

  • Like volume
Up, or right then left

Move down the slider

  • Like volume
Down, or left then right
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Activate Double-tap
Long press the focused item Double-tap and hold

Move up the slider

  • Like volume
Up, or right then left

Move down the slider

  • Like volume
Down, or left then right

Android system gestures

Version 9.1 & up
Action Gesture Multi-finger gesture
Home Up then left When Gesture navigation is on, 2-finger swipe up from the bottom
Back Down then left When Gesture navigation is on, 2-finger swipe from the left or right edge of screen
Recents (app switcher) Left then up When Gesture navigation is on, 2-finger swipe up from the bottom and hold
Show notifications

Right then down

  • Or, from the top of the screen, 2-finger swipe down.
2-finger swipe down from the top
Show quick settings While a notification is open, 2-finger swipe down --
Dismiss notifications Down then left 2-finger swipe up from the bottom
Open the app section In the Home screen, 2-finger swipe up --
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Home Up then left
Back Down then left
Recents (app switcher) Left then up
Show notifications

Right then down

Show quick settings While a notification is open, 2-finger swipe down
Dismiss notifications Down then left
Open the app section In the Home screen, 2-finger swipe up

Control TalkBack

Version 9.1 & up
Action Gesture Multi-finger gesture
Pause or resume speech -- 2-finger tap
Start or stop media -- 2-finger double tap
Answer or hang up a call -- 2-finger double tap
TalkBack menu Down then right 3-finger tap
Practice gestures -- 4-finger tap
TalkBack help -- 4-finger double tap
Show or hide the Accessibility menu, if you’ve turned it on When Gesture navigation is on, 2-finger swipe up from the bottom When Gesture navigation is on, 3-finger swipe up from bottom

Pass-through

  • When you use the pass-through gesture, the system interprets the next gesture like TalkBack is off. For example, if you single-finger swipe from the top of the screen, you get the notification shade.
-- 4-finger double tap and hold
Copy text in focused item -- 3-finger double tap
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Pause or resume speech --
Start or stop media --
Answer or hang up a call --
TalkBack menu Down then right
Practice gestures --
TalkBack help --

Show or hide the Accessibility menu

  • If you’ve turned it on
When Gesture navigation is on, 2-finger swipe up from the bottom

Pass-through

  • When you use the pass-through gesture, the system interprets the next gesture like TalkBack is off. For example, if you single-finger swipe from the top of the screen, you get the notification shade.
--
Copy text in focused item --

Edit & select text

Version 9.1 & up
Action Gesture Multi-finger gesture
Start or end selection mode -- 2-finger double tap and hold
Copy selected text -- 3-finger double tap
Cut, while in selection mode -- 3-finger double tap and hold
Paste -- 3-finger triple tap
Version 8.2 & lower
Action Gesture
Start or end selection mode --
Copy selected text --
Cut, while in selection mode --
Paste --

Tip: When you use TalkBack on your Android, most one-finger gestures become two-finger gestures. For example, with TalkBack on, you can two-finger scroll, but with TalkBack off, you can one-finger scroll.

Customize TalkBack gestures

You can assign most TalkBack gestures to most actions. For example, assign the “Next” reading control to swipe down. You can also reset assignments to their default settings.

Important: Two-finger swipe gestures can’t be reassigned.

To customize gestures:

  1. Open the TalkBack menu.
    • On devices with multi-finger gestures: Three-finger tap. Or, in one motion, swipe down then right.
    • On devices without multi-finger gestures (prior to updated Android R with TalkBack 9.1): In one motion, swipe down then right.

Tip: If your Android device has a fingerprint sensor, you can use fingerprint gestures with TalkBack. Select TalkBack settings and then Customize gestures. Choose the gesture that you want to assign to a different action. Choose the action you want to assign to the gesture.

Actions you can choose

Basic navigation
  • Tap
  • Touch and hold
  • Previous item
  • Next item
  • Focus on first item on the screen
  • Focus on last item on the screen
  • Scroll back
  • Scroll forward
  • Scroll up
  • Scroll down
  • Scroll left
  • Scroll right
System actions
  • Home
  • Back
  • Recents (app switcher)
  • Notifications
  • Quick settings
  • All apps
  • Accessibility shortcut
  • Hold accessibility shortcut
Reading
  • Read from the top
  • Read from the next item
  • Pause or resume speech
  • Turn TalkBack sound on or off
  • Change spoken language
Menu & controls
  • Open TalkBack menu
  • Previous reading control
  • Next reading menu
  • Move navigation focus backward or adjust reading control up
  • Move navigation focus forward or adjust reading control down
Text editing
  • Start or end selection mode
  • Copy
  • Cut
  • Paste
  • Show edit options
  • Switch to braille keyboard
Other
  • Play or pause media
  • Start voice command
  • Screen search
  • Pass through next gesture
  • Show custom actions
  • Open tutorial
  • Practice gestures

For more help with Talkback, contact the Google Disability Support team.