Bonjour! Microsoft launches on-screen Skype translator in six languages

Cut out the middleman and break down live language barriers with this nifty add-on

Forget the hassle of typing everything a person says into Google Translate, you can speak to the person in real time and have live translation with Skype Translator.

Microsoft has unveiled its new translating service, which provides real time translation when you're calling your long-lost pal from China.

Currently Microsoft has rolled out this software capable of translating conversations in six different languages: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Mandarin.

Going by the accuracy of Google Translate and other online translating devices, you're probably thinking, do I trust computer translation enough to make try and understand what's going on in an important business call? Yes you should. According to Microsoft, a PHD student trusted this software to unite donors around the world for a non-profit project, - that's good enough for us.

As you can imagine the service isn't going to be perfect as it's currently in a preview stage. It won't always pick up proper names or place names, so expect to have a bit of a giggle at your contacts expense. A bunch of additional languages and improvements to the service are to arrive in the coming months.

You'll need to download Skype with Translator for your desktop or tablet, and make sure you have a headset with microphone functionality. Once you've downloaded, choose a contact to call, click the globe icon and select the languages that you and your contact speak, and your ready to go.

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