Zoom indicates that its real-time translation function will be operational next year for 12 languages.
The company showcased the feature on Monday during its annual report Zoomtopia event, and argued that it would help break down language barriers during video calls. In the demo, Zoom employees spoke English and the video conference app translated the words in real time using subtitles written in Japanese and then Chinese. Another employee then spoke German and the app translated the words into English.
The technology uses AI– powered algorithms to transcribe what a speaker says into text. Zoom then uses machine translation programs to convert the text to another language.
The real-time translation feature comes from a German startup called Kites, which Zoom acquired in June. Zoom didn’t specify which 12 languages the feature supports, but Portuguese and Korean were also featured in the demo. Zoom also didn’t say whether it would charge for translation features.
Zoom’s other big feature is the expansion of the app’s automated transcription service to 30 more languages. Currently, the characteristic Only supports real-time transcription for English language, but when enabled, it can offer closed captioning service, which makes it ideal for hearing impaired users.
However, free users have to ask access to real-time transcripts. Otherwise, you’ll need a paid Zoom account with built-in cloud recording. Zoom tells us that it plans to “begin testing and releasing automated transcription and live translation starting early next year.”
The company is also working on a feature to detect hand gestures during a video call and translate them into emoji-like reactions during a Zoom session. the gesture recognition The technology is already available on iPads, but Zoom plans to roll it out to all platforms. The feature can currently recognize a thumbs up and a raised hand gesture.