Translation apps for the iPhone and iPad range in the hundreds. While I can’t say I’ve tried every single one, I have tried quite a few. iTranslate is the easiest, fastest, and most accurate of the bunch. iTranslate is simple as it is useful, allowing translation of multiple languages in both directions. Even better, instead of the most common method of translation input; typing a phrase, iTranslate allows speaking into your device to receive your delivered translation within seconds.
How it Works
On launch, you will be prompted to tap one of the recognizable circular ‘Siri’ type microphones staring you in the face. Each of these will have country’s flag overlaid, indicating the language you should speak if you tap there. Before you begin talking away, you may want to tap the Options symbol on the top left of the screen to select your language and the language you wish to have your speech translated to.
The first piece of the options menu is the selection of languages as mentioned above. A few settings following this will allow you to toggle the following: Dictionary Results, Detect end of speech, and Auto Speak. Dictionary Results will give a more literal translation of what you’re looking to say – though I find the translation is always very similar, if not exactly the same. Detect end of speech, like Siri, will automatically end the recording once you stop speaking, or the app believes you have stopped speaking. So far, I have not been cutoff mid-sentence by iTranslate nearly as often as I am by Siri. Auto Speak will automatically speak your translation as soon as it is ready.
Under these settings, options to Gift, Rate, Share, and Tweet the app are available. Finally, options allow you follow the development team, provide feedback, subscribe to the developers newsletter, get help, and get taken to the app developer’s (Sonico Mobile’s) Website.
Options During Translation
Once you speak your language in the proper microphone and have it read back to you – a few options are hidden for you to take advantage of. First, let’s say the app misses one word out of a few sentences, instead of having to repeat your long winded translation request, simply tap the part of the screen showing you erroneously recorded text, and you will notice you now have the ability to change a word, sentence, etc. If you have enabled iTranslate to Auto Speak, it will immediately change the translation and speak the revised version. Second, you may want to have the app re-read your translation a few times and that’s no problem here. Simply hold down on the translated bubble and you will be presented with options to Copy, Share, or Speak. Tapping speak will force the app to reread your translation. If you needed just the text, Copy will allow you to take it with you into another app.
Finally, tapping the Share button will reveal three options; Text, Mail, and Tweet. Text will put the translated text into a text messages typing area – leaving you to just enter the recipient and send away. Mail will open the translated text in email allowing you to send through that medium. Tweet will package the text up in a tweet for you to send out to the Twittersphere.
This app provides a quick, simple, and elegant way to translate yourself (or someone else) in order to have a Multilanguage conversation even if you speak just one language. An iPad app exists separately, but the interface is very similar and though the layout is a bit different, the general idea is identical. I love using iTranslate not only to understand someone I may come across who doesn’t speak English, but also in an educational fasion. I find myself speaking into it to learn words in other launguages. The supported language list is quite impressive, though there’s always room for additional languages to be added. With a pricetag of free and design and functional capacity second to none, iTranslate is your go-to translation app for iPhone and iPad. Get it now and don’t miss out on this 10/10.