Microsoft has announced a new automated translated service which provides conversation subtitles in real-time .
“It is early days for this technology, but the Star Trek vision for a universal translator isn’t a galaxy away, and its potential is every bit as exciting as those Star Trek examples,” writes Skype Vice President, Gurdeep Pall, in a blog post. “Translator opens up so many possibilities to make meaningful connections in ways you never could before in education, diplomacy, multilingual families and in business.”
“Skype Translator results from decades of work by the industry, years of work by our researchers, and now is being developed jointly by the Skype and Microsoft Translator teams. The demo showed near real-time audio translation from English to German and vice versa, combining Skype voice and IM technologies with Microsoft Translator, and neural network-based speech recognition.”
Microsoft plans to debut Skype Translate on the Windows 8 platform later this year in a beta capacity. Skype Translate will launch with a only handful of languages and exclusively for the Windows version of Skype, though Microsoft hopes to quickly add more languages as well as support for the many types of computers and mobile devices that Skype customers use.
Microsoft hopes to use data collected from translated conversations to improve its translation tools. Pall says the company is “working through” potential privacy issues that surround the use of customer calls.
Source: Microsoft Research