How to use ‘ok google’ from any screen

This right now ONLY works when you set voice search language to English (US).

To make things very clear: this works best when you have the entire phone set to English (US), and it will NOT support any other language at the time being (not even UK English). Oh: you NEED to have Google Now ON. And a phone with 4.4 doesn’t hurt.

It seems to be a region/country thing. And what kind of device you’ve got. For me in Sweden it works on HTC One M7 and M8. My Nexus 7 2013 is trickier but there I just use Google Now Launcher instead (where it always had that ‘any screen’ thing).

And it very much depends on having correct versions of Google Search (3.5.x and up) and of Google Play Services (5.0.x and up).

With having all the requirements (if you don’t, google to find), it’s then time to make it work.

There’s two ways to get to the settings of it.

  • With Google Now open, go down to the menu button for it (3 dots) and then select Settings  and then Voice
  • Open Settings  > Language & keyboard Voice search

First you need to make sure that Language is set to English (US) or this will simply NOT work.

Then you open “OK Google” Detection where you should see From any screen. Just tick it and follow the guide that will pop up.

And that should be it! When I tried it first it was a little strange and the settings for From any screen didn’t stick the first time. But, just make sure that it’s ticked.  And, you’ll see then on your regular sceen that the google search widget now got a filled microphone symbol and that it says “say ok google”.

Sometimes you need to clear data for the search app for things to work.

  • Arun Kumar Nechlani

    Nice tutorial, very easy to setup after reading it

  • Pingback: Why “ok google” is not there in 4.4.2 for HTC One |

  • Kevin

    Didnt work on my Samsung galaxy tab 3 7.0 KitKat

    • samsung have apparently “broken” the default way of doing it since they’ve got a something similar already. I just know that samsung is “masters” at breaking things, or reinventing the wheel. Again. For the 3rd time, when there’s a wheel there already. Being mostly HTC, this isn’t my expertise