Microsoft has announced Xbox Party Chat is getting a couple of accessibility options with speech transcription and text-to-speech synthesis coming in a future update.
Microsoft announced the full details over on Xbox Wire, the new accessibility option is currently available to Xbox Insiders. Even though Xbox already offers other accessibility services like game transcription for converting in-game player speech to text and reading chat text that you type to other players aloud, the platform holder thought they could improve their level of commitment with the new option and most recently making free-to-play games more accessible.
If Xbox players enable speech-to-text transcription for Xbox Party Chat, all words spoken by people in your party will be converted into text. The converted text will be displayed in an adjustable overlay on top of gameplay. Enabling text-to-speech synthesis, however, will allow you to type into the party chat and your words will be read by an artificial voice to the people in your party with a multitude of voice choices for every supported language.
Both can be enabled together for Xbox Party Chat and the hope of the new accessibility options is to create a way to communicate for gamers who are deaf, hard of hearing or anyone who can not or chooses not to speak in party chat. If an issue were to ever arise, Microsoft says the new accessibility options are very useful at detecting microphone problems or distinguishing game audio from people in the party talking.
To enable the accessibility settings, go into the Ease of Access in your console’s settings and select the game and chat transcription sub-menu. The newly added accessibility option will be under the party chat option and can be enabled by selecting it with a checkmark, showcasing the option has been enabled. Also in that column, you change your text-to-speech voice preference.
Xbox Party Chat speech transcription and text-to-speech synthesis are currently available now to any Xbox Insider members and will be available publicly at some point in a future update.