Translator app

Discussion in 'Other Lands' started by doombuggy, Aug 30, 2017.

  1. doombuggy

    doombuggy DIS Veteran

    Jun 21, 2001
    What translator app have you used in China? I did download google translate, but was also looking at the Microsoft one. I see both can be used offline. any suggestions? My Chinese living language lessons aren't going well....
  2. Flossbolna

    Flossbolna Sea days are just so relaxing!

    Sep 8, 2006
    I had Google installed but used it very little. In Japan it did not work so well as often the signs can have all kind of meanings and it often gave me the choice of several things jumping back and force. I would suggest to test them out on some Chinese printed matters or websites to see which translations you get into English. I think the other way might work better as the English text is less ambigous as the Chinese or Japanese characters.
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  4. Karin1984

    Karin1984 DIS Veteran

    Feb 5, 2012
    I didn't have one and I managed without. One time the receptionist opened a translator on his phone, but even then there was a language barriere. My question was whether or not breakfast was included in my reservation. Not too complicated and I think a normal question in a hotel. But when I typed: 'breakfast included?' It took a while before he understood what I meant.
  5. cschaaf

    cschaaf Mouseketeer

    Oct 19, 2013
    I downloaded Pleco. I never really needed it, but would use it from time to time to try to find the word for something.

    It seemed to work well, but it's a dictionary, not a phrase translator.

    I also had Waygo installed, but only used if for fun. It lets you scan Chinese characters and get a translation. It worked well on a few things but others weren't even close according to our tour guide.

    My dad had Google Translate installed and just about everything he tried, it would say it couldn't find the translation. Even simple things like "Hello". Not sure why and it could have been user error - he might have, at some point, thought, "I wonder what this 'Delete Dictionary' button does?" ;)
  6. shelemm

    shelemm DIS Veteran

    Feb 10, 2006
    Not for travel, but I do use Pleco at home, mostly for figuring out Chinese newspaper headlines or specials in Chinese restaurants that are written only in Chinese. It's fun to use. You can even enter in handwriting and it will try to figure out what Chinese character you are drawing. But I can see how it would be frustrating to use while traveling if you wanted to understand something quickly. In 'real life' we don't often have the time to wait to get the correct translation. By the time you figure it out, the moment's gone.

    The most important thing is to be able to get back to your hotel or to get where you'd like to go in the first place. For that, you should always carry the business card of your hotel with you. For other places, it's best to be able to pronounce the name or location (nearest intersection) of where you are going in Chinese. It's not difficult once you get the hang of it, but ask at your hotel.
  7. delfinavacano

    delfinavacano Earning My Ears

    Sep 27, 2012
    Google Translate only really works if you have a VPN (despite being able to download Chinese characters for offline mode). If you have a VPN it works really well - you can take a picture of a sign or menu and load it and it will translate the characters for you. You can also hold it over a sign using the camera mode and it will translate, although I've had mostly better results from picture taking and then loading the picture.

    Waygo is actually fairly accurate, but you have to make sure to have all of the characters loaded correctly in the window. iTranslate is a decent app and doesn't need a VPN.

    If you can get WeChat, you can text people in English and it will translate it to Chinese for them and vice versa for you. Most Chinese have WeChat. (It also translates other languages, too.)

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