Google has just made its Google Translate language translation app for Android faster and expanded its coverage to several additional foreign languages, including Malay and Ukranian.
The Translate app, which was introduced in 2010, allows users to speak into an Android device to get a translation into another language, or to use a built-in handwriting feature to get translations. Those capabilities are useful for travelers when they are in places where non-native languages are spoken, wrote Matthew Gaba, the product manager for Google Translate, in a Nov. 20 post on the Google Inside Search Blog.
"Have you ever been in that frustrating situation where you meet someone – yet can’t communicate because you don’t speak each other’s language?" wrote Gaba. "Well, hopefully communication can become a whole lot easier with the launch of the new Google Translate app for Android."
The latest version of Google Translate includes more language support for the built-in handwriting feature, which now gives users the ability to directly write words in Hebrew, Javanese, and Esperanto on their devices so they can be translated on the fly, wrote Gaba. "You can also use our camera translation feature to take a photo of written text with your Android device and highlight which words you’d like to be translated."
So far, Translate supports translations for more than 70 languages, including Afrikaans, Albanian, Arabic, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Basque, Belarusian, Bengali, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Catalan, Cebuano, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Esperanto, Estonian, Filipino, Finnish, French, Galician, Georgian, German, Greek, Gujarati, Haitian Creole, Hebrew, Hindi, Hmong, Hungarian, Icelandic, Indonesian, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Javanese, Kannada, Khmer, Korean, Lao, Latin, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian, Malay, Maltese, Marathi, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swahili, Swedish, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Urdu, Vietnamese, Welsh and Yiddish, according to Google.
The latest languages included in the new version of the app are Malay and Ukranian.
Users can listen to spoken translations on their Android devices and directly translate speech, handwriting and text in photos using the app, according to Google. Often-used translations can also be saved on a user's device where it can be synced with other devices.
"Let’s say you're taking your first vacation abroad and decide to head to Spain," wrote Gaba. "The only problem? You don't speak Spanish. Now—equipped with just your Android device—you can have a fully translated back-and-forth conversation from Spanish to English with very little work. All you need to do is open up your Translate app and press the microphone icon."