Salam, Skype! Microsoft's Translator Masters Arabic
Speak your language, and your Arab-speaking vis-à-vis will understand you at the other end of Skype line. Microsoft's Translator has added Arabic to its real-time translation list.
It seems that now, years after Microsoft acquired Nokia, the most precious part of its heritage is the Connecting People motto. But now it goes out not to mobile devices, but to Internet services helping people understand each other.
One of the most impressive features Skype has received lately is the real-time translating tool that automatizes communication.
As text messages are easier to translate, the service has mastered over 50 languages for two-way translation. Voice recognition is much harder to imply, so until now Skype users could only work with English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish and Chinese.
Arabic has become the second non-European language to be supported by Skype Translator. In fact, it’s a kind of breakthrough. Just like with other languages, the machine translator works with Modern Standard Arabic, called al-fuá in its modern version. The importance of this language for the world is hard to overestimate as it has become common in most Muslim countries and a kind of lingua franca for neighboring countries.
Though it seems hard to create recognition algorithms for this language, Arabic is very logical and structured inside, and that makes its automatic recognition and translating easier.
Microsoft highlights that Arabic support is very important for the company itself. The company and its employees have to speak to a lot of Arabic-speaking people from different countries in their business and charity activities.
The feature is still in its preview phase, but anyone who wants to try it can activate the language in the app’s settings. It doesn’t work perfectly yet; in fact, no of translating apps do. But it can help you with basic colloquial understanding.