Google Translate Launches Real-Time Language Transcription Functionality

The Transcribe feature currently has support for English, German, Hindi, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai, and Russian.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced on his Twitter handle that the Google Translate app on Android is rolling out new feature called Transcribe that can live translate speech into another language in real time. The Transcribe feature is available for all Android users with the latest version of the Google Translate app installed. Once the latest version the app is installed from the Play Store, users can access the new feature by tapping on the “Transcribe” icon from the home screen and selecting the source and target languages.

The new function gives users the availability to listen to speech in one language and then transcribe the text in another, essentially a talk to text translator. Like all machine learning, the feature is not without its limitations. Accurate transcription of audio can prove to be difficult, and machine translations are often not as naturally flowing as human-translated text, and can lack nuance. Still, the option is valuable, and a welcomed addition in machine learning translation apps.

According to the Google blog, you can pause or restart transcription by tapping the mic icon. The feature allows you to see the original transcript, choose a dark theme, and change the text size by going to the settings menu.

The Transcribe feature is said to work best in a quiet environment with a single person speaking at time.

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