WHAT IS GOOGLE TRANSLATE?
Google Translate is a multilingual neural machine translation service developed by Google, to translate text, documents and websites from one language into another.
Who invented Google Translate?
Sergey BrinThe idea for Google Translate was first planted in 2004, when co-founder Sergey Brin became frustrated with a translation program the company was licensing after it translated a Korean email into “The sliced raw fish shoes it wishes.
7 Google Translate Mobile Features You Must Know
Google Translate’s mobile app can do more than you might think. Here’s a guide to all of Translate’s features on Android and iOS.
It’s fine to use websites for language translations, but chances are you mostly need to translate while on the go. The best way to do that is with Google Translate, so we’re going to show you everything the mobile app can do. We’ll focus on Android, but all of these features (aside from Tap to Translate) work on iOS too.
Whether it’s downloading languages for offline use, translating live using your camera, or having a vocal conversation, you’ll be a translating pro in no time.
1. Store Languages Offline
. Downloading languages ensures you can translate wherever you are.
To do so, tap the menu icon and choose Offline translation. This brings up a list of all available languages. Note that not every language that Google Translate supports is available for download.
To download a language, tap it on the list. You’ll see how much space it will take up on your phone, along with how much storage you have available. Languages tend to take up around 40 to 50MB each.
The top of the Offline translation screen lists your downloaded languages. Tap the trash can to remove one from your phone.
Language packs occasionally need updating. If so, you’ll see a notification on the main screen of Google Translate, from which you can update with a tap.
2. Type to Translate
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The original feature of Google Translate is the ability to type something and have it translated to another language of your choosing. Do this from the main screen of Google Translate.
To the left is the language you type in. If you need to change this, tap it to select an alternative language from the list. Choose Detect Language to have Translate decide automatically.
To the right is the language you want your text to translate to. Again, tap this to select a language from the list. Use the arrows in the middle to flip the languages.
When you’re ready, tap into the text field and begin typing.
3. Write to Translate
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You can also write on the screen, let Google Translate detect what you’ve written, and then translate it into another language.
Tap Handwriting to use this feature. Simply start writing in the Write here box.
It’s pretty good at detecting even the worst of handwriting. As you write, the sentence translate above. If it detects the wrong word, select the right one from above the writing box.
4. Speak to Translate
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Written translation is great, but what happens when you actually need to talk to someone? Don’t worry: Google Translate has you covered there too.
A neat feature lets you chat back and forth with someone. Translate will detect the speech through your phone’s microphone, and then display the translation on the screen.
To begin, tap Conversation. If you want, you can tap the wave icon to bring up a card that explains what you’re doing to the other person. Otherwise, in the bottom corners of the screen, set the language that you and the other person speak.
Each person can tap the microphone icon for their respective language when they want to talk. The translation will appear in real-time above. Alternatively, cut out the back and forth by using the Auto function—though ensure you don’t talk over each other else the system might get confused.
Tap the speaker icon to hear a translation spoken aloud.
5. Instant Camera Translation
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Another really cool feature is translation of real-world text using your camera. To begin, set the two languages at the top and tap Camera.
Point your camera at the text you want to translate and it’ll do it within the picture. Bear in mind the system isn’t perfect. It works best when detecting simple fonts, like those you might find on a sign or menu.
Tap the flash icon if you need more light, or the pause icon to freeze the image. Hit the camera icon to save the image to your phone, or the gallery icon to choose an existing photo you want to translate.
6. Save Common Phrases
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If there are phrases you need to translate often, save yourself time by storing them in the Phrasebook.
Whenever you translate something, it’s recorded in a list on the main screen of Google Translate. Tap the star icon to save it to your Phrasebook.
To access your saved translations, tap the menu icon and then tap Phrasebook. Here you can use the search icon to find a specific translation and tap the star icon to remove something from the list.
7. Tap to Translate
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You may also need to translate text that you come across on your phone. Don’t worry—you’re covered for that too.
In Google Translate, tap the menu icon > Settings > Tap to Translate. Slide Enable on. Now when you copy text from any app, a Google Translate icon will float on the screen. Tap this to get an instant translation.Image Gallery (3 Images)
You can also translate within Chrome. Highlight some text and tap Translate from the context menu.
Finally, if you receive text messages in foreign language, you can translate these all from Google Translate itself. Tap the menu icon and then tap SMS translation. This will bring up a list of all your SMS messages. Tap one to have it translated.
How to translate a page in Google Chrome on desktop
1. Open Google chrome and use it to navigate to a web page that’s written in a foreign language.
2. As soon as the page finishes opening, you should see a pop-up near the top of the screen asking if you’d like to “Translate this page?” Click “Translate.”
- You can also click “Options” to customize how Chrome works, such as always translating pages in this language without asking. If you find that Chrome has misidentified which language the page is originally written in, you can also click “Change language” to set it straight.
If you don’t see the pop-up, refresh the page. If it still doesn’t appear, the translate feature might be turned off. Here’s how to ensure it’s enabled:
1. Click the three dots at the top right of the screen and choose “Settings.”
2. Click “Advanced” at the bottom of the page, and then click “Languages.”
3. Expand the Language section if necessary by clicking the downward-pointing arrow at the top of the box.
4. Make sure that “Offer to translate pages that aren’t in a language you read” is turned on by sliding the button to the right.
If you still don’t see the pop-up when you open a foreign language webpage, Chrome might be having trouble finding the foreign text. To fix it:
1. Right-click empty space on the page.
2. In the right-click menu, select “Translate to English.”
3. The pop-up will appear, and Chrome will likely tell you that the page can’t be translated. If it does, click “Options.”
4. In the box that’s labeled “Page Language,” select the language that the page is written in. Make sure that the “Translation Language” box is set to English, or whatever your native language is.
5. Click “Translate.”
Any foreign text on the page should now translate.
How to translate a page in Google Chrome on mobile
1. Start the Google Chrome app and navigate to a web page that’s written in a foreign language.
2. At the bottom of the page, you should see a language bar with “English” and the language the page is written in. Tap “English” to display the page in English.
- You can also click the Options button (shaped like a gear) to customize how Chrome’s automatic translations work.
There’s a whole world of information out there on the internet, but a vast majority of it is probably in a language you don’t understand. That’s where Google Translate comes in. You can use it to translate a small amount of text, or translate entire websites. You can even use it to potentially bypass blocks on YouTube and other sites.
Translate webpages in Chrome
When you come across a page written in a language you don’t understand, you can use Chrome to translate the page.
- On your computer, open Chrome.
- Go to a webpage written in another language.
- At the top, click Translate.
- Chrome will translate the webpage this one time.
Not working? Try refreshing the webpage. If it’s still not working, right-click anywhere on the page. Then, click Translate to [Language].
By default, Chrome offers to translate pages written in a language you don’t understand.
Important: To turn translation suggestions on or off, learn how to manage languages on your Chromebook.
Request translation or turn translation off
Turn translation on or off for a specific language
Change the language of your Chrome browser
You can set Chrome to show all settings and menus in the language you want. This option is only available on Windows computers.
Important: To add or remove web content languages on your Chromebook, learn how to manage languages.
On Mac or Linux? Chrome will automatically display in the default system language for your computer.
- On your computer, open Chrome.
- At the top right, click More Settings.
- At the bottom, click Advanced.
- Under “Languages,” click Language.
- Next to the language you’d like to use, click More .
- If the language isn’t listed, add it by clicking Add languages.
- Click Display Google Chrome in this language.
- This option is only available on Windows computers.
- Restart Chrome to apply the changes.
THE PROS AND CONS OF GOOGLE TRANSLATE VS. PROFESSIONAL TRANSLATION
If you’ve ever taken a foreign language course, teachers and professors implore students not to use Google Translate as a tool for completing assignments. Still, many students go ahead and put their English essays into the online machine in order to get their nicely translated Spanish essay out to turn in to the teacher. The only problem is that most teachers can tell when a student has used an online translator like Google Translate since more often than not, the translation is inaccurate and ungrammatical. If Google Translate poses a problem in education, how much more of a problem is it for professionals working across languages and cultures, and what are the pros and cons of Google translate vs. professional translation services?
THE PROS AND CONS OF GOOGLE TRANSLATE IN THE PROFESSIONAL WORLD OF TRANSLATION
The pros and cons of Google translate not only impact professional translators in the language service industry, but rather anyone who chooses to use it as a translation tool. Certainly, online public access to a free, quick, and relatively accurate translation method represents significant progress in translation technology. But when one directly compares translation quality and accuracy using Google Translate with that of an experienced human translator, there is no real comparison.
The way that Google Translate works is that it uses frequency of word pairs between two languages as a database for its translations. Although this works well in some cases, often this means that it cannot put a translation into proper context without the help of a human. In fact, it may in some circumstances come up with outright errors or extremely awkward literal translations. While these can often be amusing, there is nothing funny about making mistakes on serious business document translations or when critical information is communicated incorrectly. So what are the pros and cons of Google translate vs. professional translation?
- Google Translate is free. An experienced professional translator can sometimes be costly, but remember you get what you pay for.
- Google Translate is quick. One of the main advantages of Google Translate is that it is very fast. In fact, a human translator(s) cannot compete with the speed nor, as a result, the quantity of translations that Google Translate is able to perform. In an average workday an experienced translator can translate about 2,000 words maximum (300-400 words/hour) depending on the difficulty of the text. In contrast, Google Translate is able to produce a translation with the same number of words in just seconds!
- Google Translate uses a statistical method to form an online translation database based on language pair frequency. Google Translate uses a statistical approach to build an online database for translations that are often (but not always) produced by humans and are available online.
- With Google Translate the meaning can be “lost in translation” because there is no way to incorporate context. The complexity of the text, as well as any context which cannot be interpreted without a true knowledge of the language, makes the likelihood of errors greater. Direct translation is common with Google Translate and often results in nonsensical literal translations while professional translators take great pains to ensure that this does not happen by using well-established online glossaries, back translation methods, proof readers and reviewers.
- The quality of translation is dependent on the language pair. Which source and target languages are involved also affects the quality of the translation. Since Google’s web-based translation database is built primarily from existing online translations, common translations for languages e.g. Spanish or English tend to be more accurate while translations for other languages that are not as available in Google’s database are less likely to be accurate.
- Google Translate often produces translations that contain significant grammatical errors. This is due to the fact that Google’s translation system uses a method based on language pair frequency that does not take into account grammatical rules.
- Google Translate does not have a system to correct for translation errors. There is no way of reporting errors in order to avoid having them repeated, nor is there a way to proof read what has been translated unless one is fluent in both the source and the target language.
Let me demonstrate these issues more clearly by providing you with an example of a Google translation from Spanish into Greek and English for a common Spanish expression. The phrase “Me estas tomando el pelo” means “you’re kidding” in Spanish, but Google translates this as “Νέου Πλάκα μου κάνεις” in Greek or “New Kidding” in English. Of course this is not a terribly damaging error, just cause for confusion. Let’s look at what happens though when Google Translate is used for something more serious with greater consequences.
Recently, there was an incident involving the Malaysian Defense Ministry, who decided to use Google Translate to produce an English version of its official website. The English version of the website was soon taken down after several blatant mistakes went viral on Twitter and Facebook causing quite a bit of embarrassment. Among the more amusing mistranslations were details regarding the staff’s “ethical” dress code. For example, that women in the ministry should not wear “revealing clothes” was translated as “clothes that poke the eye,” a literal translation of the Malay phrase “pakaian yang menjolok mata.” But the most damaging translation error was the following sentence regarding the ministry’s history: “After the withdrawal of British army, the Malaysian Government take drastic measures to increase the level of any national security threat.”
NOW THAT WE’VE LISTED THE PROS AND CONS OF GOOGLE TRANSLATE – DOES THE PROS OUTWEIGH THE CONS?
So as you can see the pros and cons of google translate make it clear that, although you may sometimes have success using Google translate, you would not want to use it for anything of great importance without checking to make sure that there are no errors in context, grammar or otherwise. That is a job for a professional translator. If there is no other choice and you need to translate something which will not impact your life or business in any major way then go ahead and use Google Translate. Or if you must use Google Translate, make sure that you have a native speaker proof read and review the text!
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