The Chinese search engine is developing a universal translator that uses its deep-learning neural networks to translate spoken languages instantly

Many companies have worked on the ability to translate languages in real time, but Chinese search engine Baidu might be one to finally make the technology a reality. At the MIT Technology Review EmTech Digital conference in San Francisco, the company presented a demo of its new, unnamed pocket translator device.

Using Baidu’s deep-learning neural networks, the device was able to translate between an English speaker and a Mandarin speaker. The device is currently only being leased at travel agencies and airports in China, with the immediate goal of being able to translate English, Chinese and Japanese in real time. As the device becomes ready for sale to the public, more languages will be added its capabilities. This could have huge implications for international business and tourism once these Star Trek-style universal translators are widely available.

Baidu Pocket Translator


Lead Image: Kane Reinholdtsen | Unsplash

Many companies have worked on the ability to translate languages in real time, but Chinese search engine Baidu might be one to finally make the technology a reality. At the MIT Technology Review EmTech Digital conference in San Francisco, the company presented a demo of its new, unnamed pocket translator device.

Using Baidu’s deep-learning neural networks, the device was able to translate between an English speaker and a Mandarin speaker. The device is currently only being leased at travel agencies and airports in China, with the immediate goal of being able to translate English, Chinese and Japanese in real time. As the device becomes ready for sale to the public, more languages will be added its capabilities. This could have huge implications for international business and tourism once these Star Trek-style universal translators are widely available.