Microsoft Translator gets AI-powered offline language packs

Microsoft Translator gets AI-powered offline language packs

Microsoft has announced that its AI-powered Translator tool can now be used offline on any smartphone.

The new Translator app will soon receive support for Windows devices, but now it is ready for Android and Amazon Fire devices. Users can use it for text-to-speech translation in many languages.

Developers can also use the neural translation packs to add the same translation capabilities to their own apps. This capability was only available online because of "the computing power needed to run these high-quality translation models".

End users can now download free AI-powered offline packs in Microsoft Translator.

In most cases, AI-powered translation needs a device connected to the web and - at least sometimes - a powerful processor with hardware AI features. These new offline neural machine translation (NMT) packs are not only capable of delivering better translations (up to 23% better according to Microsoft), but they're also about 50% smaller than the previous non-neural offline language packs.

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According to the official blog post about this breakthrough, "The new capabilities allow both end-users and third-party app developers to have the benefit of neural translation technology regardless of whether the device is connected to the cloud or offline".

The translations provided by the NMT offline packs are said to be of much higher quality than the ones offered by non-neural offline language packs available previously.

"To integrate translation in their app, developers will just need to add some simple code that will use Android's bound service technology with an AIDL interface to silently call the Translator app". As a result of the introduction of the offline NMT packs, developers can now add downloadable translations to their apps as well, enabling offline users to access these translation packs easily.

Most of us must have used the language translation apps to make it easy to understand the foreign languages.

Apart from the expansion of offline language packs on the Translator app, Microsoft has offered a preview of its local feature to let developers add text translation to any Android app. Moreover, the Translator Local feature is expected to be made generally available within 90 days of the preview release.

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