The unsettling language barrier in phone conversations would end soon, at least for NTT Docomo’s Japanese customers. The cellular service provider has demonstrated an on-demand phone call translator service. The feature that works on unique mobile cloud service lets people attend to calls in the language of their choice. If you don’t know Japanese and wan’t to speak in English with a Japanese friend, the new Docomo technology will act as an intermediary between you and your friend for interpretation.
The carrier is now testing the on-demand translator service along with around 400 monitors that include retailers, hospitals, tourist facilities and others. According to Docomo, the overall processing time required for translation is below two seconds. This delay is quite reasonable and is better than unnatural conditions in phone conversations like language barrier.
Amazingly, the system is now 90 percent accurate in interpreting what one says in Japanese and 80 percent accurate in English. Docomo researchers are still working with the project to finish it with some more perfection and accuracy. If the trial runs are successful, the carrier wishes to offer the service commercially after fiscal 2012.
Currently the service supports only a few languages like Japanese, Korean and English. More languages will be introduced eventually, Docomo says. Indeed, the phone call translator will be a blessing for many industries such as retail, tourism, hospitals, education and health care. These industries at present face intense language barrier issues, which often result in imperfect services and increased costs.