Xbox June Update Brings Live Text to Speech Transcription for Gamers with Disabilities

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Bhawani Singh
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Microsoft has announced its June 2021 update for Xbox consoles, bringing one very important accessibility feature to both Xbox Series X|S and Xbox One generation consoles. The new feature brings both speech to text, as well as text to speech, in the accessibility options in all eligible Xbox devices. The features will be helpful for every gamer who may have hearing and visual disabilities, but can now continue to enjoy the Party Chat feature in the Xbox consoles to participate in group conversations while in gaming sessions. The feature is the biggest in the Xbox June update, which also comes with a few other new stuff as well.

The speech to text transcription feature will allow gamers on Xbox devices to be able to read out all the conversations happening in a Party Chat, which can help them stay in tune with the latest discussions in group gaming sessions. Text to speech can also have a similar impact for those who may suffer from certain parallax vision errors, or would simply prefer listening to chats instead of reading them out in between gaming sessions. The features can both be accessed by heading to Settings, selecting Ease of Access, and subsequently selecting ‘Game and chat transcription’ and turning the required features on. When within a Party Chat, Xbox players can access the features by tapping on the Options button on the controller, and selecting ‘Configure Ease of Access settings’.

Other new features that are part of the Xbox June update include the ability for gamers to view official game updates from the game’s publishers themselves within the Xbox app on phones. The app will now show official updates in a format similar to the disappearing Stories style that is now available across more and more apps. Gamers will also now be able to reorder groups in Xbox game guides, and finally, get an easier way to approve kids to play on cross-platform multiplayer titles. “Kids who use Xbox child accounts as part of a family group can now ask for their parent or caregiver’s approval to play games like Minecraft with others who play on other gaming services. Parents can approve or decline their kids’ request using the Xbox Family Settings app on Android or iOS or right from the console,” adds the update.

The Xbox June update will roll out gradually for all users around the world, so it may take some time, as usual, for everyone to get it. Keep an eye out, then, for the new accessibility options of the console.

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