Google Goggles – Translate The World

Filed under: Web Stuff

Going for an overseas holiday? Don’t forget to pack your Google Goggles! While traveling to another country can be an amazing experience, you may find it tough to fully immerse yourself in the experience if you do not understand the local language. For example, reading road signs and ordering food from a menu you that you cant read can be a herculean task. Or just imagine yourself In Paris where there are several Starbucks stores, but, they are all translated into French.

Google comes to the rescue by the introduction of a brand new feature of Google Goggles: Goggles Translation. No longer will you have to depend on the local Good Samaritan to find your way out of embarrassing situations or avoid warning signs just because you cant read them. Goggles provides near perfect translation of foreign text after you snap a photo of it with your smart phone. No more hunting and pecking on tiny keyboards just to determine the correct restroom!

Here’s how it works:

  • Simply point your camera phone at a word or phrase. Use the region of interest button to draw a box around specific words
  • Click. Click. Click.
  • Goggles will recognize the text, and offer you a translation.
  • Press the translate button to select the source and destination languages.


Goggles can read English, French, Italian, German and Spanish and can translate them to many more languages. Extension to reading of other Latin-based languages is on the cards. Goggles later plans to incorporate non-Latin languages (such as Chinese, Hindi and Arabic) as well.

Apart from translation, Goggles v1.1 boasts of a slew of improved features:

  • Improved barcode recognition
  • A larger corpus of artwork
  • Recognition of many more products and logos
  • Improved user interface
  • Ability to initiate visual searches using images in your phone’s photo gallery.

The translation is reported to be very fast, however, there may be a few grammatical and syntax errors in the translation. But then again, it does provide you with a gist of what’s actually meant. The app can at least let you order food, skim headlines and find the nearest train station without looking like a total tourist.

Google Goggles v1.1 is available on devices running Android 1.6 and higher. To download, please scan the QR code HERE or search for “Google Goggles” in the Android app market.

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One Response to Google Goggles – Translate The World

  1. TomPier 09/05/2010 at 2:50 am

    great post as usual!

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