Back in June, Microsoft had said that translation functionality would be delivered to all Skype users before the end of the summer. They may have missed their mark by a little bit, but it’s finally here: real-time translation is now a core feature of Skype.
Initially, Microsoft had released Translator as a standalone app. That was just so they could get some help testing it out in the real world. Now that they’ve had a few months to squash bugs and tune things up, they’ve given it the green light for all of Skype’s millions of users. There’s no additional app to download, either. Once you’ve updated to the latest version of Skype, you’ll have real-time translation at your fingertips.
As we mentioned the last time we covered Skype Translator, it’s not universal like the one used by the crew of the Enterprise. It’s somewhat limited for now. In voice and video chats, it can process English, French, German, Italian, Mandarin, and Spanish. It can handle any combination, too, so whether you’re speaking English to someone in Rome or Chinese to your Parisian pen pal, Skype will convert their speech to your language.
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When it comes to text-based chats, Microsoft figures that the Translator has a huge percentage of the world’s people covered. It can translate among 50 different languages, from Welsh to Urdu to Czech to Hmong Daw.
And yes, Trek fans, it can still translate Klingon should you happen to find yourself chatting with Worf some day.