Google Expands Its Google Translate Services

By Todd R. Weiss  |  Posted 2013-05-09 Print this article Print

In March, Google Translate for Android got a big upgrade when Google unveiled a feature that lets traveling users access language-translation services on their mobile devices, even when they don't have access to an Internet connection.


Instead of relying on a connection, users can now download individual offline language apps for devices running Android 2.3 or higher. Users can install the free app to their Android device and gain the capabilities to translate text and speech, as well as listen to the translations being spoken aloud. Users can input the text they want to translate using their voice, handwriting or the device's camera. Users can also save their favorite translations for easy offline access later. They can also view dictionary results for single words or phrases as needed.

After installing the 5.7MB app, users can choose the offline languages they want to download and store them to their devices for use with translations.

The offline apps are less comprehensive than their online equivalents, but they are perfect for translating in a pinch when users are traveling abroad with poor reception or without mobile data access.

Google Translate for Android was introduced in 2010 and has been steadily gaining useful features for users. In late 2011, Google improved its then-new "conversation mode" feature, which allows users to communicate fluently with a nearby person in another language. Users can use the feature by speaking into their Android handset's microphone so that the app can translate what they say and then read the translation back to them aloud. The person to whom the user is directing his or her speech can then reply in their language from their phone. Conversation Mode translates what they say and reads it back to the original speaker. 

Google uses its powerful and expansive cloud infrastructure to provide the Google Translator services, according to the company.


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