Google announces beta program for Action Blocks, a Google Assistant tie-in for users with disabilities

Google Assistant Routines
Google Assistant Routines (Image credit: Ara Wagoner / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google announces coming accessibility feature for users with cognitive disabilities.
  • Action Blocks will allow users to place widgets on their home screens with visual cues, which correspond to Google Assistant commands and operations.
  • Google's still in the testing phase with this feature, but you can be the first to test it by joining the trusted tester program.

Google's been pushing more and more accessibility features that take advantage of Google Assistant in the last year, and one that was first highlighted at Google I/O has now reached the beta testing phase. Action Blocks will allow users with cognitive disabilities to more easily complete involved tasks like ordering a ride or pulling up movies to watch.

Action Blocks is a bit like Tasker shortcuts, allowing you to start and carry out just about any Google Assistant activity you can think of when you tap the customized block on your home screen. You can choose the image for each Action Block in order to give them specific visual cues that help the user. The feature's still in testing, but if you're part of the Trusted Tester program, you might be able to beta the feature.

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Ara Wagoner

Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.