Technology for translating text to foreign languages using a computer has advanced at an impressive rate in recent years. It is often impossible to know with certainty whether something was translated by a person or a program, and no matter how scary this may sound, it is a good thing.
The translation apps are probably one of the most useful apps you can install on your phone. If you work with people who speak a foreign language or like to travel, this kind of application is irreplaceable.
Google Translate is without a doubt the most popular free translation app, available for Android and iOS devices. The Google Translate application uses the same translation technology as the web service of the same name. It supports translation into over 100 languages when using it online and over 50 when using it offline.
The main reason why this application is so popular is the quality of the translation. Google Translate uses the so-called Neural Machine Translation Engine, which means that the application analyzes the entire sentence, not just individual words, and thus provides a translation based on the context that sounds natural and in the spirit of the language into which it is translated.
An option we particularly liked was Word Lens. With this option, you can point the camera at any surface where the text is written and the application will translate that text. Convenient option when traveling to translate signs, restaurant menus, flyers, etc.
The user interface is minimalist, clear, and functional in the classic Google manner. If you have used a Google application, you will easily know how to use this one, after a brief introduction to the options.
Android and iOS
Microsoft Translator is a free translation application available for Android and iOS devices and supports translation into more than 60 languages. What sets this application apart is that it contains the option of one-on-one and group chat. When you chat using this option, you can make it so all the messages you receive to be translated into the language you choose and your messages to be translated into the language of the recipient. A great option, especially when you use group chat with many people who all speak different languages.
The application supports text input by typing, voice, and camera. All text input methods work quite well and we rarely come across an error.
One option we liked was Phrasebooks. With this option, you can use pre-prepared phrases, which make translating similar texts faster and easier. It also supports offline translation and 47 languages are supported here.
Microsoft Translator is an application that does a lot of different things and does them all quite solidly. In terms of quality and number of options, this is the only application that can be measured on an equal footing with Google Translate.
Android and iOS
Yandex.Translate is a free translation application available for Android and iOS. We said that the main reason for the popularity of Google Translate is the quality of the translation, so if this is the most important feature of your translation application, in our opinion, Yandex.Translate is a better option.
The application contains all the expected options such as translating text from an image, translating voice messages, and saving the translated text, but also some options that we do not see so often. These include a dictionary that you can use offline, as well as translating entire web pages. Supports translations for over 90 languages.
However, the real power of the application lies in translating longer text. The way Yandex.Translate translates text is so natural that it often creates the illusion that it is a human being, not a machine, translating the text. This can sometimes be detrimental to the translation, especially when it comes to a shorter text or, a flyer text or a sign. The application will try to give context to the text that has no context and should be translated literally.
Android and iOS
SayHi is the simplest app on our list. It is a free application for Android and iOS that is used to translate live conversations.
Imagine that you are, say, at an airport in a country whose language you do not speak. If you need to talk to a customs officer, all you have to do is turn on the app, say what you want, and the app will translate and say what was translated. This way you can have a conversation with a person whose language you do not speak.
It is extremely easy to use. Select the language you speak and the language you are translating into, press the start recording button and say what you want to be translated. The main problem is the small support for languages, so many will not be able to use this feature.
Android and iOS