Voice Control

Other Categories for Physical Access:

How it works

Voice control generally uses the microphone built into the device you are using. The better the mic, the better the results in most cases. High quality external microphones with features like noise canceling can also be purchased although they are generally used with computers and not mobile devices (although they can be). 

On device versus cloud based speech recognition? In most cases the recognition happens in the cloud on mobile devices. This is important because no internet equals no voice control. As processing power improves in newer phones more features of voice control are happening on the device. This is good for privacy.


Voice control systems offer a variety of features to enable hands-free use; some of which include:

  • the ability to adapt to a person's voice, vocabulary and writing style
  • commands for editing and formatting text
  • "Say what you see" - click on buttons or icons by saying their names (e.g. click or tap send)
  • commands for common mouse or touch gestures gestures (e.g. swipe right or double click, scrolling)
  • "Show numbers" - places a number on any clickable item on the screen, click by saying the number
  • grid capability for clicking on specific areas of the screen
  • custom commands and macros for automating multistep tasks

Taking the time to learn the commands for your device is important. Don't skip this step.

dragon naturally speaking

Options for Windows Computers

Use Microsoft Windows? You have options. 

Option 1: Windows has its own speech recognition tool cleverly called "Speech Recognition." Check out our Windows Accessibility Features page to learn how to turn it on. They also offer a service called Dictation which is  not hands-free. You can learn more about Dictation here .

Option 2: Dragon Naturally Speaking (or just "Dragon" to those in the know) - is a third party application made by Nuance .  Dragon is generally considered the gold standard in terms of features and performance. 

macos voice control

Use a Mac?

Apple released Voice Control for its desktop and laptop computers in 2019.  You can learn how to turn it on here.

show names feature ios voice control

For iPhones and iPads

Voice control can be found in the accessibility settings on iOS devices. 

android voice access

Android Calls Theirs "Voice Access"

Voice access can be found in the accessibility settings on Android devices. 


  • Dictation versus voice commands
  • Training is recommended to support the learning curve required by this software
  • Adequate time for practice should be provided, anywhere from 6 weeks to 6 months of regular use.

Category Notes

Primary Disabilities Supported

Work-Related Functions

  • Dexterity or grapho-motor weakness
  • Spasticity
  • Tremor
  • Neuropathy
  • Significant loss or motor function
  • Workstation / Computer Access
  • Mobile Device Access
  • Environmental control
  • Communication
  • Enabling Devices
  • AbleNet
  • eSpecialNeeds
  • Microsoft


CMS Login