Creating a truly useful language translation app requires constant building, changing, and adding – and myLanguage, Inc. is apparently up for the challenge.
The biggest complaint with the original app was the lack of transliteration – meaning that words in one language’s alphabet were not provided in the user’s native alphabet. For example, let’s say you wanted to find the word “beer” in Korean. The correct word is unfortunately not much help unless you can read the Hangul alphabet.
This is by far the biggest improvement on the new version of myLanguage Pro. Once your word is translated, just toggle the “transliteration” button on, and voila: maekju. You’re ready to hit the bars in Seoul.
Having transliteration as an option is vital to any decent language translation program. If you need to speak, words written a foreign alphabet aren’t going to do you any good. However, chances are unless you’re pretty familiar with the language, you won’t be understood even if you do speak! It’s times like that when having the phrase you need spelled out in its native alphabet right there on your iPhone for a helpful local to read is extremely handy.
The other major complaint from the earlier version was the audio. myLanguage Pro now has twenty languages with audio translation available, up from six in the last version. The sound quality is fairly good, with a few languages sounding a bit more garbled than others. As far as the accents are concerned, it seems pretty authentic – of course, I don’t speak all of these languages, so I can’t vouch for each one! I know Portuguese and tried out quite a few phrases on this app. Only one sounded a bit odd, but the rest were accurate.
The interface is still very easy to navigate, with a few extra features. The history button allows you to find your most recent translations quickly, and once you have a translation it’s easy to email. You can also rate each translation you make to help the developers improve the quality and accuracy, and if you think they should add a language, they are accepting suggestions.
As a frequent traveler, I would definitely say this app is quite useful. Because of the developer’s attentiveness to concerns, and due to the vast improvement made from the last version, I’m sure myLanguage Pro will only get better and better.
myLanguage Pro requires the iPhone OS 2.2 or later and is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch.