What is Real-Time Translation and the Feature

Language translation technology that has come a long way since the early days of the internet is now developed and intelligent. Real-time translation is as common as making a note. Moreover, smartphone software makes things much more accessible, bringing shops, banks, books, and dictionaries closer to users. The technologies that only a few decades ago were a matter of science fiction today are part of our daily activities. One hardly thinks of the technology standing behind a pocket translator, but once you go behind the scenes, you see a whole new world of technologies, artificial intelligence, and the future you have been imaging so bright. Today, let’s take a tour of the real-time translation world and reveal all the innovations soon to become a reality.

But first, let’s check out some mind-blowing statistics you never knew.

And some more global market statistics:

What is real-time translation?

Real-time translation (RTT) literally means translating content instantly. RTT can be used for business to personal purposes, facilitating the translation processes, covering the language gap, and supporting multi-lingual communication. At the enterprise level, of course, real-time translation is much more than increased workflow: the technology can improve customer experience, get access to a broader consumer market, save on human resources, and many more.

The smartphone that has morphed from receiving and sending calls into a high-tech equivalent of an extensive dictionary summons millions of words in a pocket.

How real-time translation works?

The process of RTT has undergone dramatic transformations over the years. The previous versions that used the technology of changing speech into text and then translating it into a chosen language are now powered by AI technology. They are faster, smarter, and more accurate. Real-time translation with AI captures and examines the waveforms of the sound, classifies the speech, and translates into a target language.

Machine learning algorithms and pattern-matching software recognize sounds, while neural networks and deep learning programs analyze the speech within the context and the sentences. The information is then processed with encoders and translated. Powerful RTT tools have access to a database of words previously taken from millions of documents. The entire process now takes nearly 2 to 5 seconds with 85% accuracy. However, there can be millisecond delays translating speech to text if the tool works with cloud data. Even though 85% accuracy is not 100%, the technology is still a revolutionary tool that facilitates multilingual real-time communication with unprecedented efficiency.

The dark side of Real-Time translation or “When translation goes wrong”

85% accuracy mentioned above is good when you use the translation for communication or translating content of less importance. But when it comes to official data, the missing 15% accuracy becomes critical. According to the University of California-San Francisco research, the machine learning algorithm of Google rolled out in 2017 had registered 92% accuracy in translating doctor’s orders from English to Spanish and 81% accuracy from English to Chinese. The 2% of Spanish translation and the *% of Chinese were declared to have the potential to cause “clinically significant harm.” RTT is aimed to change lives but should by no means do harm. The good thing is that real-time translation based on AI and neural networks learns and develops; data about the accuracy may soon change.

How real-time translation works?

We have seen ideas that are still fantasy and the ones that have already become part of our life. And what about RTT devices? Do they exist already? Real-time technology is embedded in various devices - smartphones with installed translation apps, earplugs, pocket translators (existed for quite a long time), and more. Portable devices like pocket translators still have a limited database. Another crucial factor of translators is robotic voice, a subject of multiple pieces of research. The results show that the humanlike synthesized voice is perceived as more likable and gets higher scores than robotic. Considering this tendency, the idict.io solution generates speech to speech translation that takes the user’s voice and translates it into the target language in human-like synthesized voice parameters. The technology is game-changing in terms of communication, providing real-time translation and more human touch and accuracy. We have an answer; a real-time translation device is a reality, and it can be in your smartphone.

Who uses real-time translation?

The use cases of real-time translation

The translation industry, primarily real-time translation, has global players competing and battling to take leading positions. Google, Apple, and Microsoft are global players, offering translation solutions for business and personal use.

Google: The new Pixel Buds launched by Google are wireless earphones with built-in real-time translation supporting 40 languages. Pixel Buds can instantly translate the speech of two people talking. The feature is also available on Google Assistant devices, Android phones, and smart home devices.

Apple: Compatible with 11 different languages, Siri personal assistant provides real-time translation for iOS and Mac.

Microsoft: Microsoft is the leader (at the time of the survey) in translation technology. Supporting over 100 languages, the company offers instant translations in Skype, PowerPoint, and other Microsoft products. The French to English language combination is the top popular one according to company data.

Amazon: The company has announced Live Translate software for Alexa devices that includes seven languages: English, Spanish, Hindi, German, French, Brazilian Portuguese, and Italian.

Waverly Lab: The pilot system offers earbuds shared between two people for instant translation. The device is powered with machine translation and up-to-the-minute speech recognition technology, enabling users to understand each other.

More services and products come to the forefront, trying to implement giants' technology and top off with new innovative features like voice cloning and Natural language processing (NLP).

In the modern business environment and communication, translation requirements are complex and require high-quality services. The AI-powered real-time translation services like idict.io expert human translations and deliver the fastest language solutions used anytime and anywhere. Here are the most common use cases of real-time translation.

The future of real-time translation

Global players continue leading the industry, but real-time translation is a vast market with tremendous potential and a place for startups and new ideas.

Google will soon make its real-time translation technology accessible on iOS. The users will hear the instant translation of a target language in their ears and switch to any available language.

Canadian Ortsbo company offers a social networking solution for instant translations for chats and messaging platforms through a plugin. The service supports 53 languages.

Hanashite Hon’yaku, an automatic voice translation service, will provide real-time translation for Japan market supporting only four languages: Japanese, Chinese, Korean and English.

Armenian idict software utilizes machine learning and NLP where users can have their voices translated not by robotic voice but by their own voice through voice cloning technology. The mobile application supports over 100 languages.

Embracing changes and innovations are part of progress. Start implementing new products and technologies for your business and track increased productivity.

Wrapping up: Is real-time translation worth it?

Though the technology is new and there is still so much to be developed and adopted to make it 100% accurate, the statistics and data already prove the technology is worth it. We will have secured cloud environments with SaaS and web-based technologies in the future, providing all kinds of translations. Supported by Artificial intelligence, we will soon have customer support switching to any preferred language instantly, medical services without miscommunication, better parent engagement and student outcomes in education, and more. With all the power of real-time translation, how will you and your business make the most of its potential?