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The Microsoft 365 apps work with the accessibility settings and features of most devices. These settings can help to make them easier to use. For example, you can change the color contrast to make the screen easier to see or control the device with the keyboard instead of a mouse, and so on.

The way that you choose these settings depends on what kind of device you have: Windows, Mac, iOS, or Android. To learn more about accessibility in Microsoft 365, go to Make your content accessible to everyone.

Use the Microsoft 365 apps with the built-in Windows 11 accessibility features, settings, and tools, such as the screen reader Narrator, Magnifier, contrast themes, and more.

In this topic

Use the Accessibility menu

In Windows 11, the Accessibility menu offers many built-in accessibility features and settings to support people with disabilities. You can find the Accessibility menu under Settings. You can also launch accessibility features like Narrator or Magnifier from the Accessibility menu.

  1. To quickly open the Accessibility menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

Use Narrator

Narrator is a screen-reading app built into Windows 11, and Microsoft 365 apps are optimized for Narrator. To learn about Narrator, go to Complete guide to Narrator.

  1. To start Narrator, press Ctrl+Windows logo key+Enter.

Use contrast themes

If you want more color contrast to see text and items on your screen better and make it easier on your eyes, you can turn on a contrast theme.

  1. To open the Accessibility menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Contrast themes.

  3. Select a suitable theme from the Contrast themes menu, and then select Apply.

For more information, refer to Use color and contrast for accessibility in Microsoft 365 and Change color contrast in Windows.

Magnify the screen content

Magnify parts of your screen content with the Magnifier tool. You can set Magnifier for full screen or for a Lens pane.

  • To quickly start Magnifier, press the Windows logo key+Plus sign (+).

  • To zoom in, press the Windows logo key+Plus sign (+). To zoom out, press the Windows logo key+Minus sign (-).

  • When the focus is on Magnifier, you can change its settings on the Magnifier toolbar. Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to move on the Magnifier toolbar. To select an option or options list, press Spacebar. To exit an option or options list, press Esc.

  • To exit Magnifier and close the tool, press the Windows logo key+Esc.

For more information, go to Use Magnifier to make things on the screen easier to see.

Change the text size

You can change the size of text on the screen without adjusting your screen’s resolution.

  1. To open the Accessibility menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Text size.

  3. Move the Text size slider to the right to adjust the size, and then select Apply.

For more information, go to Make Windows easier to see

Change the size or color of the mouse pointer

You can change the mouse pointer size and color to make it easier to use your mouse.

  1. To open the Accessibility menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Mouse pointer and touch.

  3. Move the Size slider to the right to adjust the mouse pointer size.

  4. To change the pointer color, under Mouse pointer style, select an option to change the color of your mouse pointer to white, black, inverted, or any of the bright recommended colors. To customize the pointer color, select Choose another color.

For more information, go to Make your mouse, keyboard, and other input devices easier to use

Use Cortana

Use Cortana, your virtual voice-controlled assistant, to carry out basic tasks. To learn more about Cortana and how to set it up, refer to What is Cortana? Cortana is available only in certain countries and regions.

Note: To use Cortana in Windows 11, you might have to enable it and sign in to your Microsoft account first.

Use Windows Speech Recognition

If you're using Speech Recognition for the first time, you have to set it up.

  1. To open the Accessibility menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Speech.

  3. Turn on the Windows Speech Recognition switch, and then follow the wizard's instructions.

  4. After you complete the setup, you can use the tutorial to learn voice commands and train your PC to recognize your voice.

To learn more about Speech Recognition commands, refer to Use voice recognition in Windows and Windows Speech Recognition commands.

See also

Use a screen reader with Microsoft 365 apps

Keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365

Discover Windows accessibility features

Use the Microsoft 365 apps with the built-in Windows 10 accessibility features, settings, and tools, such as the screen reader Narrator, Magnifier, high contrast colors, and more.

In this topic

Use the Ease of Access menu

In Windows 10, the Ease of Access menu offers many built-in accessibility features and settings to support people with disabilities. You can find the Ease of Access menu under Settings. You can also launch accessibility features like Narrator or Magnifier in the Ease of Access settings.

  1. To quickly open the Ease of Access menu, press the Windows logo key+U or type Ease of Access in the Search box.

Use Narrator

Narrator is a screen-reading app built into Windows 10, and Microsoft 365 apps are optimized for Narrator. To learn about Narrator, go to Complete guide to Narrator.

  1. To start Narrator, press Ctrl+Windows logo key+Enter.

Use high contrast color

If you want more color contrast to see text and items on your screen better and make it easier on your eyes, you can turn on the high contrast mode.

  1. To open the Ease of Access menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select High contrast.

  3. To turn on high contrast mode, turn on the Turn on high contrast switch. Windows might display a “Please wait” screen for a few seconds before the colors on the screen change.

  4. Select the theme that works best for you from the Choose a theme dropdown menu.

For more information, refer to Use color and contrast for accessibility in Microsoft 365 and Change color contrast in Windows.

Magnify the screen content

Magnify parts of your screen content with the Magnifier tool. You can set Magnifier for full screen or for a Lens pane.

  • To quickly start Magnifier, press the Windows logo key+Plus sign (+).

  • To zoom in, press the Windows logo key+Plus sign (+). To zoom out, press the Windows logo key+Minus sign (-).

  • When the focus is on Magnifier, you can change its settings on the Magnifier toolbar. Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to move on the Magnifier toolbar. To select an option or options list, press Spacebar. To exit an option or options list, press Esc.

  • To exit Magnifier and close the tool, press the Windows logo key+Esc.

For more information, go to Use Magnifier to make things on the screen easier to see.

Change the text size

You can change the size of text on the screen without adjusting your screen’s resolution.

  1. To open the Ease of Access menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Move the Make text bigger slider to the right to adjust the size, and then select Apply.

  3. In the Change the size of the apps and text on the main display menu, select the option that best suits your needs.

For more information, go to Make Windows easier to see

Change the size and color of the mouse pointer

You can change the mouse pointer size and color to make it easier to use your mouse.

  1. To open the Ease of Access menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Mouse pointer.

  3. Move the Change pointer size slider to the right to adjust the size.

  4. Under Change pointer color, select the option that best suits your needs.

For more information, go to Make your mouse, keyboard, and other input devices easier to use

Use Cortana

Use Cortana, your virtual voice-controlled assistant, to carry out basic tasks. To learn more about Cortana and how to set it up, refer to What is Cortana? Cortana is available only in certain countries and regions.

Tip: If you are using Cortana with voice for the first time, she will ask your permission to ask you a few questions to understand what is important to you. If you’re OK with this, press the Tab key until you hear “Accept,” and then press Enter. If you don’t want to answer the questions, press the Tab key until you hear “No thanks,” and press Enter.

Use Windows Speech Recognition

If you're using Speech Recognition for the first time, you have to set it up.

  1. To open the Ease of Access menu, press the Windows logo key+U.

  2. Select Speech.

  3. Turn on the Turn on Speech Recognition switch, and then follow the wizard's instructions.

  4. After you complete the setup, you can use the tutorial to learn voice commands and train your PC to recognize your voice.

To learn more about Speech Recognition commands, refer to Use voice recognition in Windows and Windows Speech Recognition commands.

See also

Use a screen reader with Microsoft 365 apps

Keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365

Discover Windows accessibility features

With Microsoft 365 for Mac, you can use the accessibility features on your Mac to zoom in, use keyboard shortcuts and VoiceOver, the built-in macOS screen reader, and hear text in documents read aloud.

For more information, refer to Apple Accessibility.

In this topic

Turn on keyboard access

When the keyboard access is turned on, you can press the Tab key to move the keyboard focus between all controls and areas in windows and dialog boxes.

  1. On the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Keyboard.

  3. Select the Shortcuts tab.

  4. In the category table on the left, select Keyboard.

  5. Select the Turn keyboard access on or off checkbox.

Use keyboard shortcuts to move within an Microsoft 365 app

From within any Microsoft 365 app, you can use keyboard shortcuts to move in and operate an Microsoft 365 app. For the keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365 apps, refer to Keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365.

Use the function keys as Microsoft 365 function keys

On the Mac, icons printed on the top row function keys usually perform special, hardware-related functions. However, they also work as standard function keys in Microsoft 365 for Mac when you press the Fn (Function) key along with the function key.

If you don't want to press the Fn key every time you use a function key, you can change your Apple system preferences.

  1. On the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Keyboard.

  3. Select the Keyboard tab.

  4. Select the Use all F1, F2, etc. keys as standard function keys checkbox.

Change shortcut preferences

In Keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365, some shortcut keys for individual Microsoft 365 for Mac apps might conflict with default keys on your Mac. To use the Microsoft 365 for Mac shortcuts, you might have to change your Mac keyboard settings.

  1. On the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Keyboard.

  3. Select the Shortcuts tab.

  4. In the category table on the left, select Accessibility.

  5. In the key combination table on the right, select the name of the shortcut that you want to replace.

  6. Select the key combination you want to replace, and then press the key combination that you want to use as the new keyboard shortcut.

Turn on additional Mac accessibility features

You can change settings for contrast, mouse pointer size, zoom, and more.

  1. On the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Do one or more of the following:

    • To change the contrast, for example, change the screen to black on white or white on black, select Accessibility > Display > Display, and then select the Increase contrast checkbox.

    • To flash the screen when an app plays an alert sound, select Accessibility > Audio, and then select the Flash the screen when an alert sound occurs checkbox.

    • To press multiple keys and display pressed keys on the screen, turn on the Sticky Keys. Select Accessibility > Keyboard > Hardware, and then select the Enable Sticky Keys checkbox.

    • To decrease the amount of time between when you press a key and when it is activated, turn on the Slow Keys. Select Accessibility > Keyboard > Hardware, and then select the Enable Slow Keys checkbox.

    • To control the mouse pointer with the numeric keypad or keyboard shortcuts, select Accessibility > Pointer Control > Alternate Control Methods, and then select the Enable Mouse Keys checkbox.

    • To make the mouse pointer bigger, select Accessibility > Display > Pointer, and then move the Pointer size slider to adjust the pointer size.

    • To use zoom to make items on the screen larger or smaller, select Accessibility > Zoom, and then select the options you want or review the keyboard shortcuts to activate zoom.

Turn on VoiceOver

VoiceOver is the built-in screen reader on your Mac. You can hear most menu commands, options in dialog boxes, and other elements on your computer screen.

  1. Do one of the following:

    • Press Command+F5.

    • On the Apple menu, select System Preferences. Select Accessibility > VoiceOver, and then select the Enable VoiceOver checkbox.

Listen to selected text

You can listen to any selected text, such as the title of a document. To hear most menu commands, options in dialog boxes, and other elements on your computer screen, use VoiceOver.

  1. On the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Select Accessibility > Spoken Content, and then select the Speak selection checkbox.

  3. Select Options on the right side of the Speak selection checkbox.

  4. Select the Keyboard shortcut field, and then press the keyboard keys you want to use to activate the spoken content. Change any additional settings you want, and then select OK.

  5. In any Microsoft 365 application, select a piece of text, and then press the keyboard shortcut you specified in step 4 to hear the text read aloud.

See also

Use a screen reader with Microsoft 365 apps

Keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft 365

Microsoft 365 for iOS works with the accessibility features of your device, such as VoiceOver, Dictation, Zoom, Invert Colors, and Dynamic Type. You can even use Siri. For example, you can tell Siri to start an app, as in, “Hey Siri, start Excel.” If you have an external keyboard, Microsoft 365 apps also support the use of keyboard shortcuts to move around your screen.

In this topic

Specify a shortcut

You can create a shortcut to the features you use the most with Microsoft 365 apps, such as VoiceOver.

  1. Go to Settings, select Accessibility, and then select Accessibility Shortcut.

  2. Select the feature you want to add to the shortcuts.

  3. To activate the shortcut, press the side button three times quickly. In older models, press the Home button three times.

Magnify the screen with Zoom

To use an on-screen magnifier with Microsoft 365 apps, turn on Zoom.

  1. Go to Settings, select Accessibility, and then select Zoom.

  2. Turn on the Zoom switch.

  3. To zoom in and out, double-tap with three fingers.

  4. To move around the screen, drag three fingers on the screen.

Make menu text larger with Dynamic Type

To see larger text in Microsoft 365 menus, turn on Dynamic Type. In Outlook, the entire Inbox is enlarged. In Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Word, only the menus are enlarged, but you can change the zoom of your document by moving two fingers toward each other and away from each other.

  1. Go to Settings, select Accessibility, select Display & Text Size, and then select Larger Text.

  2. Turn on the Larger Accessibility Sizes switch.

  3. Select your preferred reading size at the bottom of the screen.

Invert colors to improve contrast

For better visibility, you can invert the colors on your device. For example, in Excel and Word, you can display white text on a black background.

  1. Go to Settings, select Accessibility, and then select Display & Text Size.

  2. Select one of the following:

    • Smart Invert to reverse the colors of the display, except for images, media, and some apps that use dark color styles.

    • Classic Invert to reverse all colors of the display.

Use dictation to enter text

Note: If the microphone key doesn’t appear on the on-screen keyboard, the text area doesn’t support dictation.

You can dictate text in Microsoft 365 apps.

  • When the insertion point is in a text area of Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint, or Word, you can select the microphone button at the lower-right corner of the on-screen keyboard and then speak your text.

  • When you’re finished dictating, tap the center of the screen.

Use VoiceOver

VoiceOver is the built-in screen reader on the iPhone and iPad.

Turn on VoiceOver

  1. To turn on VoiceOver, do one of the following:

    • Press the side button three times quickly. In older models, press the Home button three times.

    • Ask Siri. (“Hey Siri, turn on VoiceOver.”)

    • Go to Settings, tap Accessibility, tap VoiceOver, and then turn on the VoiceOver switch.

Open an Microsoft 365 app with VoiceOver

  1. Slide your finger over the apps to browse the apps list. VoiceOver announces the names of the apps as you touch their icons.

  2. To move between home screens, slide your finger to the bottom of the screen until you hear the number of the home screen, for example, "page one of three," and then swipe up to go to the next home screen or swipe down to go to the previous home screen.

  3. When you hear the name of the app you want, double-tap the screen to open it.

Use the VoiceOver rotor to navigate in Microsoft 365 for iOS apps

You can choose which navigation options are added to the VoiceOver rotor to easily move through the elements in your Microsoft 365 documents, presentations, and spreadsheets.

  1. To turn on VoiceOver, press the side button three times quickly. In older models, press the Home button three times.

  2. To move to the home screen, drag one finger up from the bottom of the screen until you feel a vibration or hear two rising tones, and then lift your finger. In models with the Home button, press the Home button once.

  3. On the home screen, slide one finger on the screen until you hear "Settings," and then double-tap the screen.

  4. Swipe right until you hear "Accessibility, button," and then double-tap the screen.

  5. Swipe right until you hear "VoiceOver, On, button," and then double-tap the screen.

  6. Swipe right until you hear "Rotor, button," and then double-tap the screen.

  7. In the Rotor menu, swipe right until you hear an option you want to add to the rotor navigation, and then double-tap the screen to select it. Repeat this action for all options you want to add to the rotor.

  8. Open the Microsoft 365 file you want to work on.

  9. To select a navigation option using the rotor, rotate two fingers on your device's screen. VoiceOver announces the first option. Keep rotating your fingers to hear more options. To select an option, lift your fingers off the screen.

  10. To navigate using the selected option, swipe up or down on the screen with one finger. For example, to move forward or backward one word at a time in your document, select Words in the rotor, and then swipe up or down on the screen. VoiceOver announces the words as you move in the document.

Navigate with VoiceOver in Microsoft 365 for iPad apps

When you use VoiceOver to navigate in an Microsoft 365 app, you can use gestures only or a combination of gestures and keyboard shortcuts (if you have an external keyboard).

Use the ribbon with VoiceOver on

The ribbon is the main way to access commands and options in most Microsoft 365 for iOS apps. They are grouped into various tabs.

Note: The following instructions assume that you are using your device only. If you are using VoiceOver together with an external keyboard, you can use the Left and Right arrow key to navigate instead of swiping left or right and press Control+Option+Spacebar to select instead of double-tapping the screen.

  1. To access the ribbon tabs, tap near the top of the screen with four fingers, swipe right until you hear "Show ribbon, button," and then double-tap the screen. You hear the currently selected tab, for example, "Home tab."

  2. To expand the ribbon tabs menu and navigate to another ribbon tab, double-tap the screen. Then swipe left or right until you hear the tab you want, and double-tap the screen.

    When you select a tab, a tab-specific ribbon appears. Each ribbon includes options organized into groups.

  3. Swipe right to move into the ribbon and browse its commands and options. Double-tap to make a selection.

  4. To hide the ribbon, swipe left or right until you hear "Hide ribbon, button," and then double-tap the screen.

See also

Use a screen reader with Microsoft 365 apps

Apple accessibility

Microsoft 365 for Android works with the built-in accessibility settings for Android devices, with the TalkBack screen reader, and with Android Speech Recognition.

Note: The available features, gestures, and methods might depend on the Android version, device model, or manufacturer.

In this topic

Use TalkBack

Turn on TalkBack

When TalkBack is on, you hear a spoken description of whatever you select or activate on your device. This includes commands, locations, lists, and buttons, in addition to the contents of screens, menus, and pop-up windows.

  1. Do one of the following:

    • Select Settings > Accessibility > TalkBack, and turn on the Use service switch.

    • Press and hold both volume keys for a few seconds.

Notes: 

Navigate with TalkBack by using gestures

  • When TalkBack is on, you can drag your finger around the screen to find commands, locations, and content. TalkBack announces the icons, buttons, and other items as you drag your finger over them.

  • To scroll up, down, left, or right, use two fingers to swipe in that direction.

  • To select or activate the current command or other screen elements, double-tap the screen.

  • You can also swipe right or left to move to the next or previous item on the screen.

  • To return to the Home screen, swipe up-then left.

  • To close menus or return to the previous screen, swipe down-then-left. 
     

Use TalkBack gestures

Get to know the full list of shortcut gestures you can use when TalkBack is on, along with many other options for customizing how your device works with TalkBack.

  1. On your device’s home screen, swipe up with two fingers. The alphabetically sorted list of apps opens, you hear "Personal apps list," and the focus is on the Search apps field.

  2. Swipe up with two fingers to get to the end of the app list. TalkBack plays sounds when you swipe the list and plays a higher sound when you reach the end of the list.

  3. Drag your finger around the bottom of the screen until you hear "Settings," and double-tap the screen.

  4. Swipe right until you hear "Accessibility," and double tap the screen.

  5. Swipe right until you hear "TalkBack," and double-tap the screen.

  6. Swipe right until you hear "Settings," and double-tap the screen.

  7. Swipe right until you hear "Customize gestures," and double-tap the screen.

  8. Swipe right to explore the list of available gestures. TalkBack announces each gesture, followed by what it does.

  9. To return to the TalkBack Settings menu, do one of the following:

    • Swipe down-then-left.

    • Swipe left until you hear "Navigate up, button," and double-tap the screen.

Turn TalkBack off

  1. Do one of the following:

    • Press and hold both volume keys for a few seconds.

    • Use the Settings menu as follows:

      1. On your device’s home screen, swipe up with two fingers. The alphabetically sorted list of apps opens, you hear "Personal apps list," and the focus is on the Search apps field.

      2. Swipe up with two fingers to get to the end of the app list. TalkBack plays sounds when you swipe the list and plays a higher sound when you reach the end of the list.

      3. Drag your finger around the bottom of the screen until you hear "Settings," and double-tap the screen.

      4. Swipe right until you hear "Accessibility," and double tap the screen.

      5. Swipe right until you hear "TalkBack," and double-tap the screen.

      6. Swipe right until you hear "Use service, On, switch," and double-tap the screen. You hear: “Stop TalkBack."

      7. Swipe right until you hear "Stop, button," and double-tap the screen.

Use Android accessibility settings

Android offers many built-in accessibility features and settings to support people with disabilities.

  1. Select Settings > Accessibility.

  2. Select the setting you want to change. You can modify, for example, the following settings:

    • Captions to add captions to the bottom center of all images. You can change the text size and caption style.

    • Magnification to zoom in and out of a view.

    • Font size to increase all text on your device to a larger point size.

    • Display size to increase the size of the elements in your file.

  3. To modify Talkback settings, select Talkback, and then select Settings. You can modify, for example, the following settings:

    • Text-to-speech settings to choose the language, speech rate, and pitch.

    • Verbosity to choose how much TalkBack says.

    • Speak passwords to choose whether TalkBack speaks password characters without headphones.

    • Sound and vibration to modify the sound and vibration feedback.

Invert colors to improve contrast

To make the content easier to read and select, you can invert the colors in your device or increase contrast.

  1. Select Settings > Accessibility.

  2. Do one or more of the following:

    • Under the Display category, select Color inversion, and then turn on the Use color inversion switch.

    • Under the Experimental category, turn on the High contrast text switch.

      Note: High contrast text is an experimental feature. It is not guaranteed to work with all buttons and surfaces.

See also

Use a screen reader with Microsoft 365 apps

Android accessibility

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