Zoom became the ubiquitous app for most digital users during the pandemic and continues to be an important tool for both personal and professional reasons. The video conferencing service has also improved its accessibility features and now they’re bringing auto-generated captions for all users, both free and paid. This should make it easier for users that are not able to follow everything that’s happening aurally during a meeting or webinar. It also helps hosts and organizations that may not have a live captioning tool in place.

Auto-generated captions may not always be the most accurate but it’s still better than not having any live transcription tool in your video conference. The lack of proper accessibility tools has placed some people in the margins during this pandemic so tech companies bringing more inclusive and accessible features are always welcome. Zoom is now bringing this feature for all free Zoom Meeting accounts as well as paid Zoom Meetings and Zoom Video Webinars accounts.

The feature has to be enabled through the Zoom web portal but single users within a multi-account will have to ask the account admin to enable it for all users. If you’re a participant in a video call, you can request for the meeting host to enable live transcription through the meeting toolbar. If the account users manual captioning and third-party captioning services, that is of course still supported by Zoom.

There are other accessibility features available on Zoom, including keyboard accessibility, pinning or spotlighting interpreter video, screen reader support, and voicemail transcription. They promised that they will be rolling out more features that will be more inclusive for all kinds of users although there doesn’t seem to be any clue as to what else they have up their sleeves. But despite stiff competition, Zoom is still one of if not the most used video conferencing services.

The auto-generated captions or live transcription for Zoom is currently available in English. They do plan to expand to more languages “in the future” so we’ll have to wait for further announcements as to what languages these will be.