giant Microsoft has reportedly created a software dubbed the
"Universal Translator" that can convert English language spoken to
it into 26 different languages.
Frank Soong and Rick Rashid -- from the Microsoft headquarters in
Redmond, Washington --
created the software which can also speak in the user's own voice,
the Daily Mail reported.
The scientists hope that the software will one day allow visitors
to foreign countries have conversations with other people, even
though they do not speak the same language.
Soong said his breakthrough could help language students and might
also work with navigational devices.
Hypothetically, it could be installed into a smart phone meaning
tourists have a ready made translation device sitting in their
"We will be able to do quite a few scenario applications. For a
monolingual speaker travelling in a foreign country, we'll do
speech recognition followed by translation, followed by the final
text to speech output in a different language, but still in his
own voice," Soong said.
Soong and Rashid created the software with colleagues at the
Microsoft Research Asia in Beijing, the company's second-largest
The device needs around one hour to get used to a person's voice,
and then works by comparing the words that have been recorded with
stock models for the target language.