The voice access feature belongs to the accessibility tools of Windows and allows users to control their computers using only their voice. For example, you can open new apps, close some, and navigate through them using voice commands.
Let’s take a look at the different methods to enable voice access in Windows 11.
Method 1: Enable voice access through the Settings application
The easiest way to enable the voice access feature is to use the Windows Settings application. You don’t need administrator access to the system for this, so even if you’re using a standard user account, you can make these changes.
Here’s how you can proceed:
- press the To win + I keys together to open the Settings app.
- To elect Accessibility from the left pane.
- Go to the right side of the window and click on the Speech choice.
- Now turn on the switch for Voice access.
- If you want this feature to start automatically after you log in to Windows, expand the Voice Access option and check the box associated with Start Voice Access after logging in to your PC.
Once the feature is enabled, Windows will prompt you to download a speech model for the voice access feature to understand you. Follow these steps to continue:
- Click on the To download.
- This should open the voice access guide window. You can now select the microphone you want to use for this. If your preferred device is not listed, click the Add new microphone knob.
- Once the microphone is selected, click the arrow icon at the bottom right of the window to continue.
- In the next window click on the Start Guide to learn how to use the voice access feature.
It’s a lot like Google Assistant and Alexa, so you shouldn’t have any problems using it if you’re already familiar with these tools.
Method 2: Enable Voice Access via Windows Registry
If for some reason using the Settings app to enable the voice access feature doesn’t work for you, you can try using the Windows Registry Editor for the same purpose. With this method, the voice access feature is automatically enabled when you log in to Windows.
Windows Registry is an administrative-level tool that contains information about the operating system’s programs and processes. Advanced users often use the registry to customize the system to their liking, which is exactly what we’re going to do in this method.
However, keep in mind that you will need administrator access to the system to continue with this method. We also recommend that you create a registry backup before following the steps below. Doing so will allow you to revert to the Registry Editor’s current state in case something goes wrong in the future.
Once you are done, follow the steps below to continue:
- Press To win + R to open a Run dialog box.
- Type regedit in Run and click Enter.
- Alternatively, you can also type Registry Editor into the Windows search and click Run as administrator.
- Click Yes in the User Account Confirmation prompt.
- Once you are in the Registry Editor, navigate to the location below:
- Go to the right side of the window and double click on the Configuration where the. If this value is missing, right-click anywhere in the right pane and choose New > String value.
- Rename this value as Configuration and touch Enter to save it.
- Now double click on the configuration key you just created and under Value data type voiceaccess.
- Click Enter to save the changes.
This should make the required changes successfully. If you want to disable the voice access feature in the future, you can simply delete the registry key you created.
Optimize the Windows 11 experience with the voice access feature
Now that you have enabled the Voice Access feature, you can optimize your Windows 11 experience with it.
First of all, if the feature isn’t set to start automatically right after you log into Windows, you can enable it by pressing the Alt + Shift + C keys. Use the keyboard shortcut Alt + Shift + B to prevent voice access from listening to you.
If you want to use voice typing instead of typing text, you can also use the Win + H shortcut. This opens a small dialog box with three icons. You can click the microphone icon to start recording.
To help your computer better understand your voice, you can use Control Panel to improve your speech recognition experience. Here’s how you can do that:
- Type Control Panel Search Windows and click Open.
- In the Control Panel, navigate to: Ease of access > voice recognition.
- Click now Train your computer to understand you better option and follow the on-screen instructions to continue.
Apart from this, you can also ask Windows to display numbers for all elements on the screen of a menu or the file explorer. When the voice access feature is enabled, just say “Show numbers” and the system assigns all clickable elements a specific number that you use to further operate the computer.
Use voice commands to control your PC
The voice access feature makes using the computer and navigating through apps much easier. It’s even easier to use the voice access feature on Windows if you’re previously used to using services like Google Assistant and Alexa. As a result, you save yourself the physical effort of using the cursor or keyboard while performing a lot of tasks.