Microsoft's Skype moves toward auto-translation

December 15, 2014
Microsoft announced on December 15, 2014, a new step toward real-time translation: a Spanish-English program through the Skype messaging service

Microsoft announced Monday a new step toward real-time translation, launching a Spanish-English test program using its Skype messaging service.

"Today, we are excited to announce the first phase of the Skype Translator preview program," said Microsoft's Gurdeep Pall.

"The preview program will kick off with two spoken languages, Spanish and English... Skype Translator will open up endless possibilities for people around the world to connect, communicate and collaborate; people will no longer be hindered by geography and language."

The program had its first trial with school children in Mexico City and their counterparts at a school in Tacoma, Washington.

"One classroom of children speaking Spanish and the other speaking English, Skype Translator removed this and enabled them to communicate," Pall said.

"Skype Translator relies on machine learning, which means that the more the technology is used, the smarter it gets. We are starting with English and Spanish, and as more people use the Skype Translator preview with these languages, the quality will continually improve."

Microsoft announced in May what it called a breakthrough in real-time voice translation, saying it fulfills a vision of the "universal " in the Star Trek science fiction series.

Explore further: Microsoft claims breakthrough in real-time translation

Related Stories

Microsoft rolls out Skype for web browsers

November 14, 2014

Microsoft on Friday released a test version of Skype that lets people make Internet calls from web browsers, eliminating the need to install special applications.

Google developing a translator for smartphones

February 9, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Google is developing a translator for its Android smartphones that aims to almost instantly translate from one spoken language to another during phone calls.

Recommended for you

Paleontologists report world's biggest Tyrannosaurus rex

March 22, 2019

University of Alberta paleontologists have just reported the world's biggest Tyrannosaurus rex and the largest dinosaur skeleton ever found in Canada. The 13-metre-long T. rex, nicknamed "Scotty," lived in prehistoric Saskatchewan ...

NASA instruments image fireball over Bering Sea

March 22, 2019

On Dec. 18, 2018, a large "fireball—the term used for exceptionally bright meteors that are visible over a wide area—exploded about 16 miles (26 kilometers) above the Bering Sea. The explosion unleashed an estimated 173 ...

2 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

gstark
not rated yet Dec 15, 2014
Finally, the Babblefish appears on the in the distance!
gwrede
not rated yet Dec 15, 2014
Finally, say the spooks. Now all we have to do is copy the transcripts off of Microsoft's disks, instead of storing warehouses full of audio data! And they're even translated to English!

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.