Google's next update for its Translate app for Android will include a new feature that automatically recognize speech in popular languages and change it into text in real time, says a The New York Times report.
Google's Translate app can already recognize dozens of languages, which can be input by voice or by your smartphone’s keyboard and output it as text. The latest update to Translate for Android, however, will help users automatically recognize the spoken language without having to manually select it on their own.
“We have 500 million active users of Translate every month, across all our platforms,” Macduff Hughes, the engineering director of Google Translate is quoted as saying. He added that translation was an important part of learning for most people as about 90 percent of the web was in about 10 languages.
Apart from the update, reports suggest Google is also working on a new service that will allow you to “hold your phone up to a foreign street sign and create an automatic translation on the screen". This could be referred to the functionality of the Word Lens app that also supports real-time word translations when you hold the camera on your smartphone up to any words in a foreign language and have it translated to your chosen language in real-time. Google hasn't confirmed when the update will be rolled out but users can try the World Lens app from the Google Play Store.
It's worth pointing out here that Microsoft had recently unveiled an update for Skype that included real-time translation of human speech. The Skype Translator works by translating voice input from an English or Spanish speaker into text and translated audio. For e.g., an English speaker will hear a translation from a Spanish speaker, and vice versa. Currently the Preview works on Windows 8.1 or preview copies of Windows 10 only.
Source: The New York Times