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NEWS 21 JUNE, 2016

Google Translate is 10 years old

Is the translation professional a better place now that Google Translate is 10 years old?

There was a time when professional translators were asked to provide a list of dictionaries and reference tools at home. Translations were received on paper and typed in WordPerfect 4.1 – or even typewriters! Despite the heated arguments in favor and against machine translation as a tool for translators, its use and popularity are beyond argument. Many envisaged the death of the translator and the death of translation services as a result of Google Translate’s ever improving translations. However, now that Google Translate is 10 years old, it has become part of everyday life for millions of people to solve small translation problems. It helps businesses and, more importantly MT visibility has provided exposure for other to grow machine translation customization businesses, PangeaMT among them.

See Google’s video below to check Google Translate in action.
If you were a translator before 2006, does this make you feel old? If we count the number of words translated by software (Google Translate, Microsoft’s Bing, PangeaMT, Systran, etc.) and those by humans, “machines” already translate more words on a daily basis than humans. Translation has turned a software supply service in 2016.

Google’s translation platform has now been around for ten years. It banks on its wide 500 million user base to provide feedback on the translations and improve it output. Users can translate and interact with Google Translate interface. They can improve Google Translate’s output by choosing the best alternative translation. The company’s algorithms do the rest.


Google Translate turns around 100 billion words a day. Over the last decade, the online translation service has grown from relying on Systran for its automated service to revolutionize the translation landscape thanks to its team leader Franz Och, a leading European researcher. It now supports more than 107 languages, and it also translates text in photographs, it facilitates live conversations, and supports offline translation.

Google says Brazil is the country with the largest number of users. The most common language combinations for translation are translations between English and Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese and Indonesian. Despite its efforts to improve how algorithms understand and then translate language, human revision and proofreading are necessary for most professional results.

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