Google Brings Real-Time Translation to Assistant on Phone

Posted on December 13, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Android, iOS, Smart Home with 2 Comments

A new Google Assistant feature called interpreter mode will bring real-time translation features to both Android and iOS.

“Travelers already turn to the Assistant for help researching and checking into flights, finding local restaurant recommendations and more,” Google’s Lilian Rincon writes. “To give you even more help during your trip, the Assistant’s real-time translation feature, interpreter mode, is starting to roll out today on Assistant-enabled Android and iOS phones worldwide.”

According to Google, the new interpreter mode will allow users to have a back-and-forth conversation with someone speaking a foreign language. So it’s yet another step towards the Babelfish as envisioned by Douglas Adams in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

To use this feature, just say “Hey Google, be my German translator,” “Hey Google, help me speak Spanish,” or similar. Assistant will then switch into interpreter mode and you’ll see and hear the translated conversation appear at it happens. The Assistant will also provide Smart Replies when possible to speed up the conversation.

Interpreter mode works across 44 languages, Google says. You can find the complete list here.

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Comments (2)

2 responses to “Google Brings Real-Time Translation to Assistant on Phone”

  1. nicholas_kathrein

    Nice! Can you imagine in just 5 or 10 years where this tech will be? Very cool.

  2. scottkuhl

    This is fantastic technology. However ... We were all ready to use Google Translator this year when we went to Japan but found that almost everyone we encountered spoke English and they wanted to practice it with us more than use a translator. Anecdotal I know. But interesting none the less.

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