Voice typing is one of the many hidden features in Google Docs that people don’t use regularly yet. Meanwhile, the few users who know cannot use it successfully. So, if you can’t get voice typing to work on Google Docs, we will help you fix that with a few solutions in this article.
Reloading the Google Docs tab or restarting the browser may resolve the issue. If nothing changes and Google Docs voice typing still doesn’t work when you restart your browser, run the troubleshooting checks recommended below.
1. Switch to Chrome
If you can’t find the voice input option in the Tools section of Google Docs, you’re probably using an unsupported browser. Here’s the problem: If you’re not using Google Chrome, you’ll be missing out on some of the best features of Google Docs. A good example is typing offline. And you really can’t blame Google for wanting to keep some of its best cherries on its tree.
2. Check website microphone access
When using the voice typing feature on Chrome for the first time, you may be prompted to allow the website (i.e. Google Docs) to access the microphone on your PC or Mac. Click on Allow. If you can’t remember if you granted access to the Google Docs microphone or if you clicked Deny by accident, there is a way to check and fix the problem.
Step 1: Tap the three-dot menu icon in the top right corner of Chrome and select Settings.
2nd step: Go to the “Confidentiality and security” section.
Step 3: Select Site Settings.
Step 4: Scroll down to the Permissions section and select Microphone.
Step 5: You can check if Google Docs (https://docs.google.com) is in the Allow section.
If Google Docs is in the Block section, skip to step 6 to grant access to the site’s microphone.
Step 6: Click on Google Docs (https://docs.google.com:443).
Step 7: Press the Microphone drop-down button and select Allow.
Go back to the Google Docs page and check if voice typing is now working.
If you have an external device with a built-in microphone connected to your computer, you should also verify that the device is the active microphone used by Chrome. On Chrome’s microphone settings page (see step 4 above), tap the Default drop-down button.
Now select the device you want to use as the default microphone for voice input.
You should only select the microphone after verifying that it is working properly.
3. Check access to Chrome’s microphone
Another thing you want to confirm is that Google Chrome (not just Google Docs) has permission to use your computer’s microphone or other connected microphones.
Check Chrome’s microphone permission on Windows
Step 1: Launch the Windows Settings menu and select Privacy.
2nd step: In the App permissions section (in the left menu), select Microphone.
Step 3: Make sure the “Allow applications to access your microphone” option is enabled.
Step 4: Additionally, scroll down to the bottom of the page and enable the ‘Allow desktop apps to access your microphone’ option.
Check Chrome’s microphone permission on Mac
Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select “Security & Privacy”.
2nd step: Go to the Privacy section and select Microphone.
Step 3: Confirm that Google Chrome is checked.
If Google Chrome is not in the list of apps listed in the Microphone section, try using voice typing on Google Docs and look for a confirmation prompt that looks like the one below. Press OK to continue.
If Google Chrome still does not appear on the Microphone permission page, you will need to reinstall the browser on your Mac.
4. Adjust the microphone volume
Voice input may not work optimally if your device’s microphone volume is muted or too low. If you’re using an external microphone with a dedicated volume knob or slider, turn up the volume and try voice input again. You can also increase the microphone volume from the settings menu on your PC. Here’s how.
Adjust the microphone volume in Windows
Step 1: Launch Settings and select System.
2nd step: In the Sound menu, scroll to the Input section and select your preferred input device (read: microphone) from the list of available devices. Then click on Device Properties.
Step 3: Move the microphone volume slider to the right to increase its volume.
Adjust microphone volume on Mac
Step 1: Launch System Preferences and select Sound.
2nd step: Go to Input tab and select the default / preferred input device.
Step 3: Finally, move the input volume slider to the right to increase the microphone volume.
Having trouble downloading Google Docs documents in Chrome? Check out the ten (10) quick troubleshooting fixes listed in the article linked below.
Last updated on Nov 17, 2020
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