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How to Use Mac Voice Control Navigation

Mac Voice Control Navigation
Written by Hassan Abbas

Mac Voice Control Navigation: With the macOS Catalina update, Apple launched an amazing feature called Voice Control. Using Voice Control, you can also navigate your Mac using only your voice. This is an improvement to the earlier dictation feature available on macOS. Also, it is quite useful for many people in different situations.

You can easily allow Voice Control and use it like you would any other input device like your mouse or keyboard. But using Voice Control comes a bit of a learning curve. It includes knowing and even knowing basic navigational and app commands.

To help you get started, this guide shows you how to use Voice Control to navigate your Mac.

Enable Voice Control on Mac

If you want to turn on Voice Control for the first time, simply use your keyboard or mouse. But make sure anything can be done with just your voice.

Step 1:

Firstly, open your System Preferences using the icon in your Dock or Apple icon > System Preferences from the menu bar.

Step 2:

Now choose Accessibility.

Step 3:

On the left side, scroll down to Motor and select Voice Control.

Step 4:

Check the box to Allow Voice Control. Optionally, you can choose a Language, Microphone, and allow the playing of sound when a command is recognized.

You’ll also see a small microphone icon appear on your screen. This allows you to know that Voice Control is active. You can also drag that icon anywhere you like, but it will remain on top of your other windows.

However, to pause Voice Control, say “Go to sleep” or tap the Sleep button on the icon. If you want to resume using Voice Control-click or say “Wake up.” Also, if you want to turn off Voice Control completely, just follow the steps to uncheck the box.

Also, try out Voice Control and close the System Preferences window, just say “Close window.” Make sure that when Voice Control recognizes a command, it will show above the icon.

Basic Voice Control commands

However, you can also use basic navigation, overlays and mouse, dictation, and text commands for choosing, navigating, editing, and removing.

It’s the best way to see and learn the commands you need is to say, “Show commands.” A small window pops up with a list of the commands. Also, you can collapse or expand those categories you want.

The best thing about the commands window is that it adjusts for what you’re doing. For example, you can’t see much under the Text Deletion commands at first. But once you open Apple Pages to work on a document, you’ll see the list immediately update to offer many commands for deleting text.

So when you first begin using Voice Control, just try to keep the Commands window open. Also, you can place it anywhere on your screen where you can flash to see it without it being a distraction.

Number and grid overlays

Another best part of the Voice Control feature is the overlays. However, you can use both or either number or grid overlays for quicker ways to move around.

Number Overlays

Number overlays place numbers except for things like menu bar and shortcut menu items. Then to choose that item, you can just say “Click [number].” This is an instant way to take action.

To show number overlays, say “Show numbers.” If you need to stop using the number overlays, say “Hide numbers.”

Grid overlays

Like the number overlays, grid overlays use numbers to break your screen up into squares. This is quite handy for items on your screen that don’t have controls for the Voice Control feature.

To show it, just say “Show grid” and also use it, say “Click [number].” You’ll check once you take action on the screen, the grid vanishes so that you can do what you want. But you can show it at any time using the command.

Make it closer, say “Zoom [number].” You can also say “Show grid” again and use the Zoom command again to keep zooming in further and further.

You can also use a grid with the command, “Show window grid.” If you want to delete the grid before taking an action, just say “Hide grid.”


You can use Voice Control to navigate your Mac is just the starting of how to control your computer, apps, and more with dictation. For those who don’t use a keyboard or mouse, you can still enjoy a dreadful macOS experience with the help of Voice Control.

Here’s all about Mac voice Control Navigation. For further queries and questions let us know in the comments section below!

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About the author

Hassan Abbas

Tech enthusiast with too many items on his wish-list and not nearly enough money! Specializing in all things tech, with a slight Apple bent he has been writing for various blogs for the best part of (too many) years

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