Note: This is a guest article by Alfie Davenport. More details about him after the post.
More and more of us are heading out to foreign countries for our holidays and business trips alike. However, a large majority of these destinations do not speak our native language.
The fact is most visitors cannot speak a language other than their own mother tongue. This is not usually considered a problem but the inability to converse with the locals may be restricting the enjoyment and experience of being in another country, and – if you’re in another country for business reasons – may make it more difficult for you to get the contract you want, or impress the client as much as you’d like to.
Being able to speak say French or Spanish will be an extremely rewarding skill to have whilst travelling in foreign countries. Of course, before you leave you may want to try and have a crash course in the chosen language but this isn’t really a practical option since you may have limited time before you board that plane, and even short crash courses are incredibly time consuming and potentially quite expensive.
So what can you do? Well, like most things, there is an app for that. In fact, there are quite a few apps for that and we shall take a look at few of them below.
Here are 6 handy language translation iPhone apps for your convenience.
This translator app is one of the most popular pieces of software available. It boasts being able to translate any phrase or sentence into any language which in this case is 52. It is easy to use and has a very handy history-tracking feature. With 650 reviews giving it an average of 4 1/2 stars out of 5 (something very rarely seen on the app store), this app comes highly recommended by its users.
2. Lonely Planet Translator
If you want a translator that you can really take anywhere, then you need this one. The Lonely Planet app is extremely good, as it will translate your spoken words into text. Furthermore, it will do all this offline so you don’t need to rely on an internet connection and suffer excessive roaming charges. Any of us that have traveled with our smartphones know that these roaming charges can be crippling, and so this is a real positive point for this app.
3. Google Translate
Another very useful app comes from Google. The system uses the iOS functionality to allow for translation of text between 64 different languages. The translation will be spoken back to you aloud as well as presenting the information in large full version screen mode. This of course makes it easier for a recipient to read. The main problem with this app (like the website) is that it is fantastic for individual words but terrible for sentences. It’s good, however, for “getting the gist” of the meaning of a phrase, which may be all you need.
4. SayHi Translate
Most of the translator apps are free (or have a free version) but this one will cost you 69p. That’s not necessarily a bad thing since this one not only provides you with 33 languages but is also one of the few apps that translates dialects as well, something often overlooked in the other apps. The diversity in dialects across a single language can make certain dialects almost unintelligible, even to those speaking the same language. This one has been given five stars on the App Store and is used by a plethora of institutions.
This app boasts about being the first crowd-sourced language translation app for the iPhone. This app has one of the best simple interfaces as well as supporting the iPhone 360 rotation tool. The developers of the app also claim that this is the most comprehensive software you can get with 59 languages to play with. It also allows users to provide feedback where translations don’t fulfill their needs 100%, thus allowing the developers to provide us with better and better translations over time.
6. Dog Translator
Why stop at humans? This hilarious app apparently translates any dog’s bark into English. This probably won’t be much use on your holiday or business trip, but could be pretty useful when your canine friend just won’t respond to simple phrases like “sit” or “please stop barking.”
Title image credit: courtesy of Sujin Jetkasettakorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Have you seen any other good iPhone apps for translation?
What are your opinions on the apps we’ve discussed in this article?
Do Share with us in the comments section below.
Name: Alfie Davenport
About: Alfie works in the technology department at Ladbrokes Games. As part of this job, he has often had to travel to different parts of the world, often wishing he could speak more languages than just English. He is very thankful that these apps exist.
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