Today, we are thrilled to announce another Skype Translator milestone: Skype users around the world will now be able to make real-time voice and video calls in Japanese, in addition to the nine other spoken languages of English, Spanish, French, German, Chinese (Mandarin), Italian, Portuguese (Brazilian), Arabic, Russian, and over 60 IM languages. In addition to today’s newest addition to Skype Translator, Japanese will also be available on all Microsoft Translation services, including Microsoft Translator Live.
Japanese has commonly been noted as one of the most difficult languages for native English speakers to learn, due to its entirely different grammatical structure and vocabulary belonging to the Japonic linguistic family. Japan has also become a beloved destination for both tourism and business, and we’re excited for the potential benefit Skype Translator will bring to Japan, the community and our users.
One of our Skype users shared his experiences living and working in Japan in 2015. After graduating from college, Abe Romero worked for a year in Kanazawa, Japan, teaching English to local high school students.
“Being a small city, Kanazawa did not have many English speakers so certain tasks, from ordering food to communicating with work colleges could get really complicated due to the language barrier. I loved the experience and made a lot of local friends, but it would have been amazing to have a reliable translation tool to communicate clearly off the bat.”
“I’m really excited Skype Translator is expanding to include Japanese. It will be an easy and efficient way to keep up with all the friends I made in Kanazawa over the past year.”
This is just one example of how Skype Translator is opening opportunities and continuing to provide means of communication that were previously unimaginable. From making the most of your gap year, to being more immersed in new cultures, Skype Translator is bringing the world together one conversation at a time.
From a technological point of view, developing Japanese has been challenging, but we are thrilled to have finally reached this milestone and for our customers to access this exciting language via Skype. You can find out more about overcoming the technical challenges of machine learning and artificial intelligence translation on today’s Microsoft Translator blog.
To try out Japanese or any of the other Skype Translator supported languages, simply click on the globe icon on the Skype Windows Desktop or the Skype Translator button on the Skype Preview app on Windows 10 and start chatting.
Have a great Skype Translator story? We’d love to hear it! Please feel free to share it on social media using #SkypeTranslator. You can also share stories and feedback on the Skype Community, and if you need additional assistance, visit Skype Support.