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March 8, 2016

Skype Adds Modern Standard Arabic to its Translator Program

Arabic has come to Skype Translator.

Modern Standard Arabic (MSA), which is used in the Middle East and Northern Africa, is the eighth spoken language to be offered by the Microsoft-owned company as part of its Translator program.

“Each of Skype Translator’s language releases has been very important for us—bringing us one step closer to breaking down language barriers for people across the world. Human connection is at the core of everything we do at Skype,” the company said in a blog post.

translato-100“The Arabic language release is especially important to us, because there is such a diverse Arabic speaking population all over the world. The ability to communicate with someone in their own language has the potential to enhance and build important relationships. For example, younger generations who speak a different language can communicate with extended family; or newly formed and migrating families are able to stay connected with family and friends back home; or educational institutions can tap the vast pool of knowledge between cultures.”

Using Skype’s voice-to-voice translation, users can now speak in English, French, German, Italian, Chinese Mandarin, Portuguese, Spanish and, now, Arabic as well. Using text-to-text translation, the number of written language options increase to more than 50 languages.

The Arabic language setting can be found in the Skype for Windows desktop application under the globe icon. Click on the dropdown menu to turn on Skype Translator, and then choose your messaging and spoken language preferences.

Using Skype Translator, a person will speak in the language of his or her choice and the words will then be translated into the recipient’s chosen language.

After one person speaks, the system then does its best to audibly translate the words in real-time. On the Skype display will be a text translation of what was said to act as a fail safe in case the automated voice makes a mistake.


Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.