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Google continues its efforts to make Android technology accessible to the greatest number and offers a solution to visually impaired and blind users. The Mountain View company announced the launch of a new virtual Braille keyboard on Thursday, reports The Verge. Importantly, the “TalkBack” braille keyboard is integrated directly into Android and requires no additional hardware.

Whether you're tweeting or responding to a text, the TalkBack braille keyboard will allow you to type on your @Android phone without any additional hardware. We hope this will broadly expand braille literacy among blind and low vision people →

- Google (@Google) April 9, 2020

With this new function, its users can write Braille text directly from their smartphone, without having to go through a device. It then becomes more practical to send SMS, to exchange on social networks or even write an email.

Coming soon in several languages

Concretely, this new keyboard consists of six virtual keys which each represent a braille dot. "To type an 'A', you have to press point 1 and to type a 'B', points 1 and 2 together", explains Google on his blog. A priori as flexible as a conventional keyboard, the new Braille keyboard "allows you to delete letters and words, add lines and submit text," says the firm.

The new TalkBack keyboard can be installed on any Android device with version 5.0 or later. For the time being, the function is only available in English.

To download this new keyboard, go to the Google PlayStore. Then just activate it in the accessibility settings of your smartphone and configure it using the tutorial offered.


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