An Android feature that helps those with speech and motor impairments navigate their phone is set to roll out on September 30.

The feature is called Camera Switches and will be widely available on the mentioned date. Camera Switches make use of eye movements and facial gestures of the user in order for phone navigation.

Android also has what it calls its "Project Activate," which focuses on users who cannot speak or those with neurological conditions. This app helps the user communicate with their Android using facial gestures and even text another person.

Updates have also been made to the Lookout by Google App. The update has added two features that focus on handwriting recognition as well as a currency mode that quickly identifies banknotes such as dollars and euros.

Android Feature Called Camera Switches Rolls Out Sept. 30

A new Android feature that helps users with speech and motor impairments navigate their phones will roll out on September 30.

The new feature, which is called Camera Switches, "can help those with speech and motor impairments to navigate their phone using eye movements and facial gestures," according to the Android website.

"By choosing just two simple gestures, all of Android is now more accessible to more people," Android adds.

According to a report by MobiHealthNews, Camera Switches turns the phone's front-facing camera into a switch. The user can choose a certain movement - may it be a smile or looking in one direction - to scan and then another movement to select.

Google has always introduced new products and features geared toward those with vision, hearing, speech, and motor impairments. An example of this is a feature introduced in 2018 that made it easier for Android to support hearing aids.

Project Activate

Android also has an app called "Project Activate," which is geared towards users who cannot speak or those who have neurological problems.

According to the app's Google Play Store listing, "Project Activate is designed for people who are unable to speak or use technology with their hands, including those who have ALS, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, or multiple sclerosis, and those who have had a brainstem stroke or cervical spinal cord injury."

Project Activate helps users do the following using facial gestures:

  • Play a text-to-speech phrase
  • Play audio to express yourself or control a smart speaker
  • Send a text message
  • Make a phone call

Related Article: Paralyzed Man Can Type 90 Characters Per Minute Thanks to New Handwriting Brain-Computer Interface

Lookout by Google Updates

Lookout by Google, the company's app for users with low vision or blindness, has two new features that have been frequently requested by users.

One of which is handwriting recognition. The user simply has to take a photo of a document, and the app will scan it before it is read aloud by the screen reader. The app can also magnify the scanned document.

The other feature is a currency recognition feature for dollars, euros, and rupees.

Also Read: New Google Look to Speak App Lets People with Speech and Motor Impairments Communicate with Eyes

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Written by Isabella James

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