Cupertino-based tech giant Google at the annual Google conference I/O has announced improvements to its translation tool Google Translate with the addition of 24 new languages including 8 Indian languages. The free to use service now supports a total of 133 languages from across the globe.
Google said that the newly added languages are used by over 300 million people globally. Google Translate now also supports Indigenous languages of the Americas namely Quechua, Guarani and Aymara. Google Translate will support a dialect of English for the first time with Krio from Sierra Leone.
Newly added Indian languages on Google Translate include Sanskrit, Assamese, Bhojpuri, Dogri, Konkani, Maithili, Mizo and Meiteilon (Manipuri). With this, the total number of Indian languages supported by this translation toll has reached 19.
In an interview with The Economic Times, Isaac Caswell, a Google Translate Research Scientist said, “Sanskrit is the number one, most requested language at Google Translate, and we are finally adding it. We are also adding the first languages from northeast India, which is another rather underrepresented place.”
On the addition of new languages, he said, “This ranges from smaller languages, like Mizo spoken by people in the northeast of India — by about 800,000 people — up to very large world languages like Lingala spoken by around 45 million people across Central Africa.”
These are the first languages on Google Translate to use the zero-shot machine translation. Caswell said in a blog post, “While this technology is impressive, it isn’t perfect. And we’ll keep improving these models to deliver the same experience you’re used to with a Spanish or German translation, for example.”