What's new in this release:
Enhancements in JAWS 2021.2103.174 (April 2021)
The following is a list of improvements made between the February 2021
release and the April 2021 update.
list of 6 items
• By default, Voice Assistant
listens for the word "sharky" before accepting any commands. However, to
help decrease the possibility of starting Voice
Assistant when you didn't
intend to, you now have the option to change the wake up phrase to "hey
sharky" instead. You can change this from the JAWS Utility
choosing Voice Assistant, and then selecting Settings. We strongly recommend
changing the wake word to "Hey Sharky."
• It is no longer necessary to
say the word "toggle" when turning on or off features including Audio
Ducking, Screen Shade, Speech On Demand, or the Virtual
example, saying "Sharky, Audio Ducking" now turns this feature on or off
depending on the current state.
• When changing the speech rate, you now
only need to say "Sharky, Voice Rate" followed by a number. For example,
"Sharky, Voice Rate 50" sets the speech
rate to 50 percent. You can even
just say the number, and the speech rate will change appropriately.
launch the JAWS Dictionary Manager, you now only need to say "Sharky,
• Voice Assistant now immediately stops listening once you
have spoken a command. This helps in situations where someone else may begin
talking which could
cause Voice Assistant to not process the command
• Voice commands that generate speech output now work as
expected even if JAWS and Fusion are set to Speech On Demand.
PlaceMarkers Now Available in Excel Workbooks
You can now use Placemarkers to mark cells in an Excel workbook similar
to how they are used in Word documents. The following commands are now
list of 4 items
• Set a PlaceMarker on the current cell, press
CTRL+WINDOWS+K. Only one PlaceMarker can be set per worksheet.
• Move to
the cell PlaceMarker on the current worksheet, press ALT+WINDOWS+K. To move
to a cell PlaceMarker on another worksheet, first press CTRL+PAGE
CTRL+PAGE DOWN to move to the specific worksheet.
• List all cell
PlaceMarkers in the workbook, press ALT+CTRL+WINDOWS+K.
• Select all
cells between the cell PlaceMarker and your current location, press
INSERT+SPACEBAR followed by M.
list of 4 items
• Updated the JAWS INSERT+W help
to now include all currently available Teams keystrokes.
• Resolved an
issue in Teams where messages were double speaking in chat pop out
• If you press CTRL+PERIOD to display all Teams commands, JAWS
now also reminds you about using INSERT+W as an easier way to access this
• Removed the ALT+T command as you can now use the Teams
keystroke, CTRL+3, to move focus to the Teams and Channels tree
Support for Reading Comments and Other Revision Types in Goodle
In Google Docs, JAWS and Fusion now indicate the following as you
list of 3 items
• Text that includes comments. When JAWS indicates
you are in a section of text that has a comment, press ALT+SHIFT+APOSTROPHE
to read the associated comment
including any replies. Press
ALT+SHIFT+APOSTROPHE twice quickly to activate the Virtual Cursor and move
focus to the comment details page. Press ESC to
return to the
• Text that has been inserted or deleted.
• Text that is
highlighted or has been called out for some reason, such as a section of
text in a document currently being edited by another user. JAWS
"mark" and "end mark" as you move in and out of this highlighted
If you prefer to not receive announcements for one or more of these
items, open Settings Center and turn off Comment announcement, Inserted text
Deleted text announcement, or Marked text announcement. All
of these options are located in the Proofing group under Text
New Installation Command Line Option for Disabling External
Starting with the April 2021 releases of JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion,
when performing a full install, IT professionals and network administrators
the /DisableExternalServices command line option to turn off all
product features that reach out to the internet. For
Once JAWS, ZoomText, or Fusion is installed after using this command
line option, features that are no longer available for use include Research
Support Tool, Voice Assistant, Error Reporting, JAWS Tandem,
Picture Smart, and Anonymous Usage Data Collection. Note that using the
software in a remote
access environment will still be available. Turning
off features that connect to the internet is especially important for
installs in secure locations
such as banks, hospitals, and government
For more information, run the setup package with the /Help command line
list of 13 items
• When joining a Zoom meeting and
you are prompted to enter your name, addressed an issue where JAWS was not
reading the name already in the edit field
if the screen resolution was
set higher than 100 percent, which is common on most modern laptops. This
caused users to enter their name again which in
turn caused it to be read
multiple times in meetings.
• In Excel, resolved a reported issue where
JAWS was saying "entering table" when pressing F2 to edit a cell's
• When navigating a worksheet in Excel using the mouse in JAWS
or Fusion, cell contents are now read first followed by the cell
• In Microsoft Word, when encountering text in a document
that is both a heading and a link, resolved a reported issue where JAWS was
not indicating the
• Addressed a reported issue where JAWS was
unexpectedly displaying an error message in Outlook when pressing
ALT+SHIFT+L from the body of a new message
to list misspelled words.
Addressed a reported issue where JAWS was not reading as expected when
reviewing a message in GMail and focus landed on text that was part of a
• Starting with the April 2021 updates of JAWS and Fusion, Grammar
detection in Settings Center is on by default for all applications except
Word and Outlook.
This enabled JAWS and Fusion to automatically announce
grammatical errors in web-based editors like Google Docs. See the following
for more details.
• Updated the descriptions in JAWS
Commands Search (INSERT+SPACEBAR, J) for the Append Selected Text to
Clipboard (INSERT+WINDOWS+C) and View Clipboard
Text (INSERT+SPACEBAR, C)
commands to help clarify that these features are especially useful when you
only want to copy and paste text without extra formatting.
• Resolved a
reported issue where JAWS was not indicating the state of check boxes in the
BARD Express app in braille.
• Resolved an issue with selecting text in
console windows at high resolution settings.
• Removed the Business
Search Research It lookup source due to changes to the website which no
longer allows us to retrieve information.
• Removed the ability to use
JAWS to customize message lists in Mozilla Thunderbird based on changes in
the way list views are presented which caused this
feature to no longer
work as expected in this application.
• Turkish is now included as an
available language option during a full install.