A new Google Assistant feature has made it easier for users to read online content. The voice-based virtual assistant will now read Web articles out loud, the company announced in a blog post on Wednesday. Android users can now ask Google Assistant to read out the articles on their Web browser, by just saying, “Hey Google, read it,” or “Hey Google, read this page.” It is a useful feature for those who consume most of their content online.
The blog post further says that the browser will automatically scroll the page and highlight words as they are being read aloud to help you follow along. Further, users will be allowed to choose between different reading speeds and voices.
Google also said that the Assistant will read articles in expressive and natural voices, with an aim to use the same intonation and rhythm that you would use if you were read it out loud yourself.
Google Assistant can also trigger the browser to read aloud in 42 languages if the original content is not available in the reader’s native language. One can use a translation menu to select which language they want the article to be read to them.
Google says that websites will not require doing anything extra to enable this feature. A “nopagereadaloud” tag can be used by the websites that prefer not to use this feature. Developers can also add this feature using Actions on Google.
The blog post adds that Google aims to remove language barriers and help everyone to have a wider access to information on the Web. It also said that this is a very useful feature to help people catch up to the plethora of information and news and will remove barriers for people with visual or reading difficulties.