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How to Enable or Disable Google Chrome Live Captions

Learn how to enable or disable the Google Chrome Live Caption feature. The caption will automatically transcript the running audio into on-screen subtitles.

Google Chrome offers a live caption feature that automatically transcribes the English audio language and displays the on-screen subtitles. We can customize the caption’s looks and toggle to enable or disable live caption chrome from global media options. We can turn off Live Caption from the accessibility settings under the Chrome Advanced settings menu.

Show or Hide Live Captions from Chrome browser

It’s always a welcome move when an app or software adds an accessibility feature to its offering. In this regard, Google seems to have hit the right note by incorporating the Live Captions feature in its Chrome browser.

Chrome Live Caption feature

When you enable this feature, it would automatically generate captions on the go for the concerned audio or video being played.

The benefits for the same are aplenty. First off, it would go to great lengths to help people who need a hearing aid. Likewise, it will also aid the users who prefer to watch foreign-language films.

Moreover, only a few services (such as YouTube) can create captions automatically; the rest all require your manual efforts, such as providing the SRT subtitles file.

But with the help of the Live Caption feature in Chrome, you don’t need to carry out any such task; everything will be taken care of by the browser itself.

So without further ado, let’s check out the steps to enable and disable the Chrome Live Captions on your PC right away. Follow along.

Enable Chrome Live Captions

Live caption functionality first appeared with Chrome version 85, but it is an experimental feature. However, from version 91 onwards, it has now been added as a stable feature, and you can enable it immediately.

There are two different methods, and we have shared both of them below. You may try out the one that you find easy to deal with.

Via Chrome Settings

  1. Launch the Google Chrome browser.
  2. Click on the More vertical 3dots icon for options menu.
  3. Select the Settings menu from the list
  4. Scroll to the Advanced section, and click to expand.
    Google Chrome Advanced Settings hidden menu
  5. Scroll to the Accessibility section, and turn ON the Live Caption toggle.
    Live Caption Toggle button Enabled in Google Chrome accessibility

Via Global Media Controls

  1. Play any audio or video of your choice on Chrome.
    It will bring up the Global Media Controls icon at the extreme right of the Taskbar.
  2. Click on the Media Control icon.
  3. Enable the Live Captions toggle, the feature will then become active.
    Live Caption Toggle button under Toolbar

Customize Chrome Live Captions

In its default state, the captions would occupy the bottom portion of your screen. Furthermore, it would be in plain white text with a black background. However, you could customize each of these aspects. Let’s check out how:

First off, if you wish to place the captions in any other location on your screen, then just drag and drop them to the desired position.

Chrome Live Caption real-time demo

Likewise, you could also expand by clicking on the downward arrow. This way you can get hold of around 9-10 lines at one instead of the default two.

Expand Closed Live Caption in Chrome

Apart from that, there’s also the option to customize the caption’s color, transparency, style, size, and effects.

Here are the steps to customize the live caption font and background:

  1. Launch the Google Chrome browser.
  2. Click on the More vertical 3dots icon for options menu.
  3. Select the Settings menu from the list
  4. Scroll to the Advanced section, and click to expand.
  5. Scroll down to the Accessibility section and click on Captions Preferences.
    Open Caption Preferences from Google ChromeIt will open the Caption Preference settings page.
  6. Customize the captions as per your liking.

You could also change the caption background color and its transparency (opaque, translucent, etc., along the same lines).

Another pretty nifty feature allows you to tweak the contrast of the other window components. This will help the captions stand out from other elements on your screen.
Closed Caption settings in Windows OS

Once you have carried out the desired customizations, make sure to disable (instructions given below) and re-enable this feature for the changes to occur.

Similarly, for the MacOS user, it will open the Caption Accessibility preference page with similar options to customize the live captions feeds.

MacOS Accessibility Captions setting

Disable Chrome Live Caption

If you wish to close the ongoing captions, click on the cross icon at the top right. However, if you prefer to turn off this feature, then refer to the below steps:

  1. Launch the Chrome app browser.
  2. Click on the More vertical 3dots icon for options menu.
  3. Select the Settings menu from the list
  4. Scroll to the Advanced section, and click to expand.
  5. Under the Accessibility section, turn OFF the Live Caption toggle button.
    Live Caption Toggle Disabled in Google Chrome accessibility

You could also turn off this feature right from the Global Media Control menu present in the address bar.

Enable Live Caption from Chrome Toolbar

It will turn off the live caption instantly on your Chrome browser.

Bottom Line

So with this, we round off the guide on how you could enable and disable Chrome Live Captions. Likewise, we have also listed the steps to customize these captions to your liking.

While this is undoubtedly quite a handy feature, it’s yet to be completely polished.

There were some issues that needed to be immediately addressed. First, it seems to work and supports the English language only for now. If you seek forward or backward a video, the entire captions get distorted and generate random lines.

What are your views on the live captioning feature with Google Chrome? Do you find this feature helpful?

Lastly, if you've any thoughts or feedback on How to Enable or Disable Google Chrome Live Captions, then feel free to drop in below comment box. You can also report the outdated information.

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Sadique Hassan

Sadique is a Bachelor of Computer Application in Computer Science and an MBA professional. He became a tech writer by choice and has continued pursuing it for the last 7+ years. He is keenly interested in open-source technology like Android and also loves troubleshooting the tech. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

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