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Use Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Chat More Accessible

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To make your Chats accessible to all users, you can use Google Chat with a screen reader or keyboard shortcuts. For example, you can send a direct message, create or join rooms, or reply to a message or conversation. In this video, you will use keyboard shortcuts to navigate chat.

To see a list of keyboard shortcuts you can use in Chat, press the “Shift” key and the forward slash. Be sure your cursor is in the chat window, not in the message box, so the list comes up.

Keyboard shortcuts can help all of your teammates and contacts access and participate in your online communication.

To use these accessibility features, you will use a screenreader and keyboard commands to: Navigate around Chat, Send a direct message, Create or find a room, and Start a new conversation within a room.

To begin, access the screen reader you use with your browser. A screen reader is a tool that presents text as spoken dialogue or Braille.

To find a list of screen readers that work best with Chat, open the help article linked on the website.

Now, navigate Chat with keyboard shortcuts.

To focus your screenreader on a particular message or room, use the Up and Down arrows.

Press Enter to open the message and begin your conversation.

Chat automatically focuses your screen reader on the message or conversation box.

To read messages in a direct message or room, press “escape” to exit the box.

Then, press the Up arrow to scroll through the messages.

Rooms have 2 levels: Level 1 is the list of conversations.

To move between conversations in level one, press the down or up arrow.

Level 2 is messages within a conversation. Use the Left and Right arrows to change the level. Press the right arrow to type a new message in a specific conversation.

You can press the “up” arrow to review previous messages in the conversation.

Next, send a direct message to a coworker.

Press control or command, plus the letter “P” to begin a new message.

Typer your receipient’s username, or use the Up and Down arrows to move through the suggestions list.

Then, press Enter to start chatting.

Type your message.

Then, press the Enter or Tab key to highlight “Send" and then press Enter to send your message.

For ongoing conversations, use a Room. To begin a Room, press control or command, plus the letter “O.” To create a room, type a name that describes the room’s purpose.

Press Enter to get started in that room.

To join an already existing room, press “Tab” to highlight the “plus” symbol or the word “Open,” and then press Enter. Press control or command, plus the letter “S.”

A new conversation or message box opens. Enter your message and press Enter to communicate with your teammates, business partners, or contacts.

Congratulations! You’ve employed keyboard shortcuts to make Chat more accessible.

Now, it’s your turn: Navigate Chat with keyboard shortcuts, Send a direct message, Create or find a room, and Start a new conversation within a room.

Choose an Extension
Use Chat Bots to Automate Your Work

Use machine learning virtual assistants, called bots, to automate your communication in Chat.

Use Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Chat More Accessible

Use keyboard shortcuts to navigate Google Chat’s accessibility features.

Manage Data Privacy in Chat

Manage what information you see and store in Chat. Edit and delete messages, hide conversations, and block users.

Chat with External Users

Chat with someone who belongs to a different organization.