Skype’s Language Translator Learns Chinese, Italian


Skype’s real-time language translator is about to get even smarter.

Microsoft on Wednesday launched the second phase of its Skype Translator preview program, bringing support for two new languages: Chinese (Mandarin) and Italian in addition to English and Spanish, which first launched in December. For the uninitiated, Skype Translator uses real-time speech translation technologies to let you have a conversation with someone over the Internet who speaks a different language.

“As you can imagine, Mandarin is a very challenging language to learn,” Skype’s Yasmin Khan wrote in a blog post. “With approximately 10,000 characters and multiple tones, this is one of the most difficult languages for a native English speaker to master, along with Arabic, Japanese, and Korean.”

Microsoft said that its researchers and scientists in Beijing worked “very closely” with their U.S.-based counterparts to construct the recognition and translation models for Mandarin.

At this point, Skype Translator is still a pre-release feature, and is only available to those running Windows 8.1 and above. Microsoft is using this preview phase to gather feedback as users test the service.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: PC Mag, Angela Moscaritolo

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