Google has been bringing a lot of transcriptions and caption features to its various devices and apps to help us follow videos better even without the audio. Now users of Google Duo will be glad to know that they’re getting their own generated captions, at least when it comes to voice and video messages that they’ll send to their contacts. This feature was actually previously spotted and now we’re seeing the implementation of this new feature for Google’s video calling app. Well, one of their video calling apps, that is.
The new feature was announced on Twitter by Made by Google and it simply said that you’ll be getting captions on your Google Duo video and voice messages “so you won’t miss a word”. The feature was spotted early on by reliable tipster Jane Manchun Wong where she saw a toggle for “captions for messages”. The toggle actually gave permission for Google to collect the audio content from users of the app to give recipients a post-process transcription.
— Made by Google (@madebygoogle) August 19, 2020
There aren’t many details available about this but based on the short video, it seems pretty straightforward. When you send a message to someone through the app, whether it’s a voice message or a video message, it will come with a caption if you turned the toggle on. Now whether the caption will be accurate, that is the question. But in any case, it’s a good tool to have for accessibility purposes.
The Duo caption is different from the Live Captions feature that Pixel owners are enjoying. The transcription happens for any spoken word content that is found on the device. It’s also different from Live Transcribe, the feature that lets your device take dictation from you or other off-device audio sources. Hopefully, other tech companies will follow suit and have more accessibility-related features.
You can update your Google Duo app to see this new feature. You will of course have to give the app permission to generate the captions for your video and voice messages.