By raising an eyebrow or with a smile, people with physical or speech disabilities can now operate their Android smartphones without using their hands.
People with disabilities can now operate Android phones with facial gestures
By raising an eyebrow or smiling, people with physical or speech disabilities can now operate their Android smartphones without using their hands, Google said Thursday.
Two new technologies, each employing machine learning and front-facing cameras on smartphones, are now available.
“To make Android more accessible to everyone, we’re launching new tools that make it easier to control your phone and communicate using facial gestures,”
Users can scan their phone screen and select a task by smiling, raising their eyebrows, opening their mouth, or looking left, right, or up.
“Every day, people use voice commands like ‘Hey Google’ or their hands to navigate their phones. However, that’s not always possible for people with severe speech and motor disabilities,” the tech giant acknowledged in a blog post.
The two new features are “Camera Switches,” which replaces tapping and scrolling with facial movements, and “Project Activate,” a new Android app that allows gestures to trigger actions such as sending messages or making calls.
The free Activate app is now available in Australia, Great Britain, Canada, and the United States in the Google Play store.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that there are about 61 million adults with a disability in the United States.