Skype Translator coming to Windows desktop

Skype Translator coming to Windows desktop

We first saw Skype Translator in a public demo on the Re/code stage last May when Satya Nadella wowed the crowd with the real time translation features.

Then back in December of last year the Skype Translator Preview finally went public but required a sign up process which gated users into the preview slowly over time.

In April they expanded the language palette of the preview by adding spoken Italian and Mandarin Chinese to Spanish and English which was already available in the preview.  At that time the Skype Translator Preview had the ability to translate over 40 written languages in the messaging side of Skype and Microsoft also opened up access to the preview so that anyone could use it. 

I had the chance to try out the spoken Italian translation service on the Skype Translator when it came out and it was impressive.

During the process of that hands on experience I asked Microsoft about the translation capabilities and when they would arrive in the desktop Skype application.  At that time they were not ready to commit to any specific timeline but that has changed today - kind of.

Microsoft has announced that the desktop Skype app will get the translator features as they begin to roll out to users by the end of summer 2015.

Since opening up access to the service back in April Microsoft reports that usage has increased by 300% and that the response to the service has been very positive.

When a service uses machine learning to increase its performance capability this is most certainly good news as more users, accents and languages get to using the service.

If you want try the currently offered languages, both spoken and written, then head over to www.skype.com/translator to get started.

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