Talking to Opera

This guide was last updated for Opera 12.00

Troubleshooting Opera with Voice

If Opera with Voice is not responding the way you expect it to, first make certain that your computer fulfills these system and hardware requirements:

(Opera 7.55, which is available from IBM, also runs on Sharp Zaurus. Please note that the functionality for this browser is slightly different from that of Opera 8.)

Cannot Find Voice Button

Check your version of Opera

Go to Help > About Opera and check the version number for Opera. Opera with Voice has the version number 7.6 or higher. You should also see an entry called "VoiceXML plug-in" followed by a string number. If the plug-in is not available, you need to install the latest version of Opera for Windows 2000 or XP, and enable voice.

Look for hidden button

If someone has already customized Opera's interface on the copy you are running, they may also, on purpose or unwittingly, have hidden the "Voice" button. Try to use the keyboard substitute for the voice button. The default setting for this is Scroll Lock, but also check in Tools > Preferences > Advanced > Voice that the default has not been altered. If the keypress produces a short beep, Voice is in place. Go to View > Customize to re-add the button to your toolbar of preference.

Not Getting Response

If you are having trouble with both input to and output from the Voice plug-in, check your audio driver setup. Should more than one driver be installed, this may cause problems for the Voice plug-in. Some other hardware may also add extra voice drivers, for example, a modem.

In Windows, open the "System" section in the control panel, select "Hardware" and "Device manager", then expand the "Sound, video and gamecontrollers" section in the tree view. If you see the name of more than one audio driver on the list, try deactivating -- not uninstalling -- the ones that do not match your sound card.

Cannot Get Voice Output

Check that Web page sound is enabled

Press F12 to display the Quick preferences, and enable this option if disabled.

Check your sound card

Your computer needs to have a functioning sound card for voice control to work. If you think it is correctly configured, but cannot get it working with Opera, test it with another application to make sure that it is set up correctly.

Correctly attach loudspeakers or headphones

Note that on most desktop computers, loudspeakers and headphones (as well as the microphone) must be connected at the back of the computer. Connecting your headphones to the CD or DVD player at the front will in most cases not give you sound from anything other than the CD or DVD player.

Make sure sound is enabled

Check to make sure that all sound on the computer has not been muted. This will often be visible as a barred-out sound icon in the system tray.

Cannot Give Voice Input

Correctly attach a microphone

If you do not have a microphone attached to your computer, you may be able to hear some output from Opera and voice-enabled documents, but you will not be able to give voice input, see the Without a Microphone section. Also make sure the microphone is properly attached to the right socket on your computer. If you cannot get it working with Opera; check with a different application to make sure the microphone is set up correctly.

Enable JavaScript

If you can use voice control on the browser without problems, but voice-enabled documents do not appear to respond, make sure that JavaScript is enabled. The most simple way to do this, is to press F12 and check the option in the quick preferences.

Make Opera listen

You have to click the voice button or press the keyboard substitute to make Opera listen to your voice commands. When you click the button or press the key, the button should visibly change to listening mode, and you should hear a beep. Listening mode needs to be active for Opera to receive voice input.

Be clear

Opera does not understand natural language input and will not be constantly listening. Wait for the beep before talking, and read the Helpful Hints section of the tutorial if Opera is listening, yet fails to understand what you are saying.

Discuss and Notify

There are several places for you to discuss Opera with Voice with other users, and where Opera employees are also likely to be present. To discuss voice in particular, try the "Voice" chat room on Operanet. There is also a Web forum in the My Opera Community dedicated to discussion about Opera with Voice.

For general discussion about preview and beta versions of Opera, use the Beta testing forum.

If you are certain something in Opera's voice-control is not working the way it should, you can also file a bug report. Please include, if possible, information about your soundcard.