Late last year, I decided it was time to move from my Huawei MediaPad tablet and get a new iPad. That wasn't my first foray into iOS/iPadOS — I'd previously had an iPod Touch and an iPad Mini — but it had been a few years since I'd last used Apple's mobile operating system. I was excited to discover what it offers and to explore all the big and small differences between it and Android. My journey uncovered some frustrating truths, but over the months, I've also come away with a newfound appreciation for features I'd taken for granted on Android, but that are either missing or aren't as good on iOS/iPad OS.
Live Caption is one of the more unique additions you'll find on Android devices. First shown off at Google I/O 2019, the feature automatically transcribes speech from video playback in real time, on-device. It was initially a Pixel 4 exclusive when it launched, but since then the capability has expanded to older Pixel models. The Galaxy S20 launched with Live Caption, and now it's coming to more Samsung handsets as One UI 2.5 rolls out.
As part of today's Pixel 4a festivities, Google has also announced a new feature that's coming to older Pixels as well. Remember Google's Live Caption feature that transcribes speech in real-time, on-device, for things like videos? Well, Live Caption will now also work for video and voice calls — more useful than ever in these socially distant times.
One of the most unique software features in Google's Pixel devices is Live Caption, a feature that creates captions on-device for any audio being played — including videos, calls, and anything else. It's something that no other Android OEM has duplicated, until now.
Live Caption is one of the most interesting features introduced on the Pixel 4, and it's great that it's coming to the Pixel 3 and 3a line, as well. By default, it only shows you two lines of live-transcribed text, which might be enough in most circumstances. But if you ever need to see more context, you can double tap the overlay to make it display eight lines of text.