Google announced today that it is updating its mobile translation app, Google Translate for Android and iOS to allow people to converse while speaking different languages. In a blogpost, the company said that users will only have to select the two languages they will be speaking in, and the app will take care of the rest.
As reported earlier this week, the company has indeed added more languages, now supporting 38 languages. The company also announced that it is updating its Word Lens app to instantly translate foreign road signs and restaurant menus. Users will be able to take pictures of foreign language signs using the stock Android camera app, and have the textual information mentioned in the image translated. It would work without an internet connection as well.
Instant translation will be available for translating from English to and from French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. The company says that support for more languages is in the works. The conversations will appear in their corresponding modes and will take place in real-time without requiring users to tap or press on their devices.
“Asking for directions to the Rive Gauche, ordering bacalhauin Lisbon, or chatting with your grandmother in her native Spanish just got a lot faster,” said Google Translate product lead Barak Turovsky.
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The feature is very similar to what Skype has had been working on for quite sometime now. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Skype Corporate Vice President Gurdeep Singh Pall last year in May announced Skype Translator. It delivers two-way translated communication using Skype with video. It translates selected languages in real time between the participating parties and displays an on-screen transcript of the conversation as it happens.
The update will start rolling out shortly.