Google is merging the considerable talents of its Maps and Translate apps in order to help travellers communicate with their hosts more effectively.
This month Google is adding a new translator feature to Maps, which, for example, will enable someone to tell a taxi driver where they want to go, or to ask a local for directions.
All users need to do is speak the request into the Google Maps app and your phone will speak out that place name and address in the local language.
For all of our best efforts to use the local language abroad, sometimes pronunciation can be a bit off, so this feature will be helpful to those who’re a little nervous in their ability to get it right.
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“Simply tap the new speaker button next to the place name or address, and Google Maps will say it out loud, making your next trip that much simpler,” Google says in a blog post on Wednesday. “And when you want to have a deeper conversation, Google Maps will quickly link you to the Google Translate app.”
Google says the text-to-speech technology will automatically detect where your phone is to determine where you might need help finding.
The company adds: “For instance, if your phone is set to English and you’re looking at a place of interest in Tokyo, you’ll see the new speaker icon next to the place’s name and address so you can get a real-time translation.”
The company says the feature is coming to iOS and Android with support for 50 languages before the month is out. Google says more languages will follow. The feature is sure to be useful for users who don’t want to keep switching between Maps and Translate when exploring pastures new.
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