Use Select to Speak

Some of these steps only work on Android 11.0 and up. Learn how to check your Android version.

You can select items on your screen and hear them read or described aloud with Select to Speak for Android.

Step 1: Turn on Select to Speak

  1. Open your device's settings app Settings app.
  2. Tap Accessibility, then tap Select to Speak.
    • Note: If you don't see Select to Speak, go to Google Play to download the latest version of Android Accessibility Suite, then try these steps again.
  3. Turn on Select to Speak shortcut.
  4. Optional: To change your shortcut, tap Select to Speak shortcut. Learn about accessibility shortcuts

Step 2: Use Select to Speak

Hear descriptions of things on your screen

  1. To start Select to Speak, use your Select to Speak shortcut: 2-finger swipe up (3-finger swipe if TalkBack is on), or tap the Accessibility button Accessibility.
  2. Tap an item on your screen, like text or an image.
  3. To hear multiple items, drag your finger across the screen.
  4. To hear everything, tap Play Play.
    • Tip: When the player is open, use the buttons to pause or play, skip forward or backward and to increase or decrease speed.

Point your camera at pictures or text

You can point your camera at pictures or text to hear them read or described aloud with OCR.

This feature is available for Catalan, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Latin, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish, Swedish, Tagalog and Turkish.

  1. Tap the Google Camera app Google Camera.
  2. Point the camera at an image or text.
  3. To start Select to Speak, use your Select to Speak shortcut: 2-finger swipe up (3-finger swipe if TalkBack is on), or tap the Accessibility button Accessibility.
  4. Drag your finger across the screen, highlighting the text that you want to read.

Read in the background

You can do other things while Select to Speak is reading in the background. For example, scroll down or switch to another app while Select to Speak reads.

To let Select to Speak read in the background:

  1. Open your device's settings app Settings app.
  2. Tap Accessibility, then tap Select to Speak.
  3. Tap Settings.
  4. At the top, turn on Read in background

Note: Select to Speak might not work with every mobile web browser.