Google introduced Android 10 in 2019, which featured Live Caption and Live Transcribe. These apps highlighted captioning, with the purpose of providing accessibility options for Android users who have hearing loss. These two apps were developed by students and researchers at Gallaudet University - the only university in the world where students live and learn using American Sign Language (ASL) and English.
The Live Caption option is accessible on some Samsung devices - and most Pixel devices. It provides captions for any media that’s played on the device.
Some have voiced complaints that it does not have built-in auto-captioning. As a result, videos on social media are less accessible.
Live Transcribe is a popular app that became available in 2019. It utilizes machine learning tools to give users captions for spoken words that are gathered by the phone’s microphone. Live Transcribe also lets users pause, save, and search for old transcriptions. It also lets the user transcribe speech to other languages.
This was a personal investment by several employees at Google. At least one of the employees is hard of hearing.
Sound Amplifier is an app that can be found through the Google Play store. It’s pre-installed in Pixel and some Android devices like Samsung. It harnesses sound through the microphone on your phone and plays optimized sound through headphones. You can use the app to adjust volume, fine-tune, and reduce background noise. It can also be used to enhance audio for various media like videos or podcasts.
If you have different degrees of hearing loss in each ear, you can make one side louder than the other when wearing headphones or linking hearing aids to the app.
Complications with Android
Google lends its Android operating system to different smartphone manufacturers such as Huawei, Motorola, Samsung, and Xiaomi. Because of this, Google does not oversee which software features are used on each device. It solely depends on the manufacturer and which software they select.
Google’s Pixel is the only exception. It is managed directly by Google, allowing the company to easily introduce new accessibility features on Pixel phones.
Compatibility with Hearing Aids
Android’s Audio Streaming for Hearing Aids protocol was issued as part of Android 10 in 2019. This audio streaming service lets hearing aids that are compatible stream audio wirelessly through Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) through the user’s phone.
It’s important to be aware that compatibility with hearing aids is not the same for every hearing aid manufacturer. There are lots of inconsistencies with software when it comes to Android phones. Be sure to bring this topic up before purchasing.
If you or a loved one are noticing any hearing loss, contact us at Pure Sound Hearing. Our hearing instrument specialists will patiently guide you towards better hearing with their experience and expertise.