I read an interesting blog post yesterday about a new product from Skype, Skype Translator, which they hope to have perfected by the end of the year. The writer of the blog post “Skype Translator Looks to put Human Translators Out of a Job!” wrote very enthusiastically about Skype Translator and how it would change doing business. He also mentioned a demo video showing a conversation between a German and an English person. I watched the video and it reminded me of a post I wrote about Google Translate a few months ago: Is Google Translate getting any better? Skype Translator looks very similar. Some of the sentences had been translated brilliantly, others were absolutely appalling.
As with Google Translate I can imagine Skype Translator being a godsend if you find yourself unexpectedly in need of a conversation with somebody whose language you don’t understand, but for doing business where contracts or manuals etc need to be accurate, Skype Translator will not help you discuss things accurately. At least not yet!
Have a look at this video which is another Skype Translator demo. What do you think about it?
I think Skype Translator will be very useful in situations when you wouldn’t even think of a translator anyway, but if it’s the case of getting that business deal or not, or finalising the last details it won’t be as good as a translator or interpreter is.
Do you agree?