The version of Cortana in the shipping (1511) version of Windows 10 has been updated to support instant translations in French, German, Italian, and Spanish. Cortana uses a Microsoft Translator back-end to perform this magical feat, which can translate to a wide range of other languages.
“Microsoft Translator’s mission is to break the language barrier by providing translation whenever and wherever you need it,” the Microsoft Translator team explains. “Now you can just ask Cortana and you’ll get your translation in an instant. You can also type the phrase into the Cortana toolbar in case you’re in a place where you can’t speak it out loud.”
Microsoft added first instant translations to Windows 10 in September. At that time, the feature let you translate words, phrases, and sentences from English or Chinese to almost 40 other languages, and it was limited to the U.S. and China.
Usage is simple enough: Just say, “Hey, Cortana translate [some phrase] to [some language].” Or, type something similar in the Cortana search box.
With this week’s update, you can now perform the same instant translations from the French, German, Italian, and Spanish localized versions of Windows 10. And it works with a bewildering array of languages which you can translate to:
As Microsoft notes, you can also perform instant translations with the Translator app for Windows 10, which works offline, and with the Translator apps for iPhone and Apple Watch, and Android phones and watches. Microsoft Translator is also integrated into other Microsoft products, like Microsoft Office, Bing, and Skype Translator.