July 26, 2013
Google Translate Adds Handwritten Input Feature
redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online
Android smartphone and tablet users who see a word or character they don't recognize can now go to Google Translate, draw the character on their screen, and the program will translate the text.
"Last year we brought handwriting input to Google Translate for Android. Earlier this year, we updated Google Input Tools on desktop by adding new virtual keyboards, input method editors, and transliteration input tools. Today, we take our input tools one step further, by bringing handwriting input to the Google Translate homepage," wrote Google Product Manager Xiangye Xiao in a blog post on Wednesday.
"Handwriting input lets you translate a written expression, even if you don't know how to type the characters."
For example, a person who sees a Chinese expression and wants to know its meaning in English may have no idea how to type the character on a keyboard. But using Google's handwriting input tool, they can simply draw the characters on their screen and instantly see the translation, Xiao said.
Google Translate will now include handwriting support for 45 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Greek, Japanese, Korean, Lao and Yiddish.
The new handwriting feature for Google Translate is currently available only on Android devices.