Android has some powerful accessibility tools that can make using a smartphone easier. “Voice Access” is one that can help if you have trouble manipulating a touch screen. We will show you how to make it work only when you are watching.

What is “voice access”?

“Voice Access” is an application of accessibility of Android that allows people to use their voice to open applications, navigate the user interface, and edit text. It is intended for people who may have difficulty using their fingers to move around a touch screen.

It can do the basic things you would expect, but there are also much more advanced things. Here is a short video to show what you can do.

You can see how its capabilities go beyond just opening apps. You can control many things on the screen and even scroll for you. Voice Access differs from the Google Assistant in that you don’t need to chat. Instead of saying “open subscriptions,” just say “subscriptions.”

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There are several ways to use Voice Access, depending on how much you need it. Voice Access can be listening whenever the screen is on, manually started with a shortcut, or activated with a Google Assistant command.

We will show you a feature called “Gaze Detection” that will make you listen when you are actively looking at the screen.

How to enable voice access gaze detection

At the time of writing this article in June 2021, Gaze Detection is in beta. You will need to subscribe to the beta version on the Google Play Store. To do so, visit the ready from Play Store for Voice Access and select “Join” on the Beta Program card.

Join the beta program.

Now you will have to wait a few minutes for arrives an app update . After that, we are ready to go. When you start the app for the first time, you will be asked to activate it in Accessibility Settings. Tap ‘OK’.

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Grants accessibility permissions to Voice Access.

Look for “Voice Access” in the accessibility settings.

I searched

Flip the switch for “Use voice access.”

Flip the switch to

You will be asked to allow some fairly large permissions, which are necessary for the powerful features of Voice Access. Tap “Allow” if you agree to that.


Now we can go to the Voice Access Settings, which is on the same screen.

Go to

Scroll down to the “Settings” section and tap on “More Options”.

Scroll down to section

At the bottom, you will see a switch for “Gaze Detection”. Turn it on.

At the bottom, you will see a switch to

Now when Voice Access is running you will see a little face icon in the status bar area. The voice command will only hear your voice when it detects your face looking at the screen.

Look at the screen / Don’t look at the screen.

For anyone who relies on Voice Access to control their Android smartphone, this is a excellent little trick . You won’t have to worry about the app listening when you’re not actively using the device. For more information on what Voice Access can do, see the full list of google commands .

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