Microsoft has finally brought its Bing Translator app to Windows devices, and it is now available for download. The app, which Microsoft claims to have designed “from the ground up for Windows devices”, can translate content in over 40 languages.

Once they've downloaded the app, users need to just point their device's camera at any printed text and the have the translation automatically placed over the video stream. Rival Google's Translator app offers something similar to its users. Late in March this year, when Google rolled out a nifty update to Translate, it introduced the ability to to translate vertical Chinese, Japanese and Korean text. All you need to do is to aim your camera at the text.

Bing Translator app

Translated text gets overlaid on the video stream

On the Bing Translator app, users have the option to type to translate with their keyboard and then hear translations spoken with a native speaker's accent. Microsoft's even made the app useful for travellers, who are likely to come across a situation when they are without an Internet connection. They have introduced offline language packs for select languages, even in the most remote locations. They plan to introduce more language packs soon.

Google Translate too, boasts of offline language packs. Translate provides for offline translations in over 50 languages even if you do not have a data pack active, or do not wish to use it while you’re travelling. To enable offline translation, you need to select “Offline Languages” from the app menu. You can choose from the various language packs available.


offline language packs

In order to translate between any two languages, you need to select them both from the offline languages menu. The newest update is available for Android devices running version 2.3 and up, which encompasses almost all phones and tablets available.

The Bing Translator app includes the Share Charm feature that lets users translate highlighted text in any Windows 8 app. There is Snap View that users can use to multi-task while browsing, chatting by snapping the Translator to the right or left of their screen.

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