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Android Language Translation Apps

written by: Steve McFarlane•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 5/22/2011

If you are looking for a great Spanish, French, English, Chinese, or Japanese language translator for Android phones we have your covered; read on.

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    Language Translator for Android

    There are hundreds of languages that are being spoken around the world and unless you are a genius you will not be fluent in most of them, at least not in this life. To function in situations where you will interact with foreigners by email, SMS or face-to-face you will need some kind of language translation aid to help you communicate. Here are a few Android language translators to help you rise to the challenge.

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    Translate

    If you are concerned that something you say or write will get lost in translation then this could be the app for you. Not only will this language translator app for Android Translate language translation app for droid phones translate to a foreign language, but it also translates back to the home language so you can see if the translation will be conveyed as you intend (see the screen shot); call it a security blanket that will protect against mistranslations and awkward moments.

    This is perhaps one of the best language translator apps for Android phones. The app can translate between 48 languages, but the standout feature is its text to speech support. Not only does it work as a text-to-text translator but it will also speak the translation, a feature that can be used as a pseudo translator, so you, and your phone can order in Italian or speak to your Japanese counterparts. The app is free and can be downloaded from this location.

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    MacDroid Translator

    MacDroid Translator 

    There are times that all you know is that the text you are looking at is in a foreign language, but you may be at a loss as to what language it is. For situations such as these MacDroid is quite useful, especially with its auto detect feature. MacDroid can translate to more than 50 languages, whether you select what language to translate from or have the app automatically determine what the language text is.

    Please note that you will need to have fonts installed to translate special character languages or else you will just see boxes where there should be text. The app is free and can be downloaded from this link.

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    StarTranslate

    StarTranslate - language translator for android 

    This, like many other apps here, uses Google’s translation service. The app is more than a language service though, in that it has a dictionary feature as well. The app can be used to easily translate SMS, emails and other text right from your Droid using copy and paste. Users can also directly type text or use the text-to-speech feature if that is their preference. This language translator app for Android is free to download and use; a download link can be found here.

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    iTranslate

    iTranslate - language translator app for android for android 

    This is an elegant language translation application for Android smartphones that simply does what it was designed to do. The app can translate between 50 plus languages including single words, phrases, or sentences. The app runs on the Google translator engine so your phone must have a network connection for it to work. Overall it does have a minimalist design that focuses the app on its core function of providing translation services. This app is also free to download and use and can be found at this link.

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    Google Goggles

    There is no doubt that Google is the powerhouse when it comes to text based search services. The company has managed to index millions of Google Goggles pages and relevant text based content online, but image related searches still remain a major challenge. Google Goggles is the company’s attempt to provide a technology that recognize images and generates relevant search results based on what Google’s servers thinks the image is.

    One may not think of this as a language translation tool, but it does recognize written English, Italian, German and Spanish words and will translate them to other languages. The app doesn’t work in every situation though, but the results are pretty awe-inspiring when it does. The app is also free and can be downloaded from the Android Market or from this link.

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    Conclusion

    The best performing language translator apps for Android phones are built around the Google translation service. This is not surprising though, because the service is fast, reliable and relatively accurate once the phone has Internet service. In any case, there is no denying that a good language translator can be a real lifesaver when you are communicating with a foreign language speaker or you just need to translate some printed text.