As part of Accessibility Awareness Month, Google is adding a new captioning feature to its G Suite presentation app Slides. The feature uses a computer’s built-in microphone to automatically transcribe the speaker’s words and display them in real time as subtitles on the slide being presented. The feature is intended primarily to help deaf and hard of hearing audience members, but should also improve the experience for anyone that understands written English better than spoken.
Powerpoint has offered similar, but more robust functionality for more than a year now. Microsoft’s service makes use of its Translator live feature to translate the spoken presentation into as many as 60 different languages and transmit them directly to attendees phones.
Google’s captioning feature is only available in US English for now, but will be available globally to anyone using Slides via Chrome on desktop or a laptop starting this week. To activate it, click the “CC” button in the navigation box when you begin presenting, or else use press Ctrl + Shift + C in Windows or Command + Shift + C on a Mac.