Google Translate gets 24 new languages using ‘Zero-Shot Machine Translation'

Google Translate now has the ability to translate words, sentences, and entire websites in 133 languages. The search giant has been using the Zero-Shot Machine Translation technique which can translate without even looking at an example, thereby speeding the process considerably.

Google has added 24 languages to Translate. This means Google Translate now offers translations in a total of 133 languages. Google claims over 300 million people speak these newly added languages.

A few of the newly added languages were born from Zero-Shot Machine Translation, a machine learning model that only sees monolingual text. In simple words, Google has developed an algorithm that can translate into another language without ever seeing an example.

As with any translation, these newly added languages aren’t perfect, and there will be some glitches. Google has acknowledged this but assured that the translations will keep getting better. Google already has a team of native speakers, professors, and linguists who have been consistently contributing to the Google Translate platform.

Here’s a complete list of the new languages now available in Google Translate:

  • Assamese: used by about 25 million people in Northeast India
  • Aymara: used by about two million people in Bolivia, Chile and Peru
  • Bambara: used by about 14 million people in Mali
  • Bhojpuri: used by about 50 million people in northern India, Nepal and Fiji
  • Dhivehi: used by about 300,000 people in the Maldives
  • Dogri used by about three million people in northern India
  • Ewe: used by about seven million people in Ghana and Togo
  • Guarani: used by about seven million people in Paraguay and Bolivia, Argentina and Brazil
  • Ilocano: used by about 10 million people in northern Philippines
  • Konkani: used by about two million people in Central India
  • Krio: used by about four million people in Sierra Leone
  • Kurdish (Sorani): used by about eight million people, mostly in Iraq
  • Lingala: used by about 45 million people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Angola and the Republic of South Sudan
  • Luganda: used by about 20 million people in Uganda and Rwanda
  • Maithili: used by about 34 million people in northern India
  • Meiteilon (Manipuri): used by about two million people in Northeast India
  • Mizo: used by about 830,000 people in Northeast India
  • Oromo: used by about 37 million people in Ethiopia and Kenya
  • Quechua: used by about 10 million people in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and surrounding countries
  • Sanskrit: used by about 20,000 people in India
  • Sepedi: used by about 14 million people in South Africa
  • Tigrinya: used by about eight million people in Eritrea and Ethiopia
  • Tsonga: used by about seven million people in Eswatini, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe
  • Twi: used by about 11 million people in Ghana

It is interesting to note that the majority of the new languages aren't commonly spoken around the world. But are extensively used in some local regions. These could help enhance literacy in the under-developed parts of the world. Moreover, languages like Sanskrit were used in ancient times. This could help many translate old scriptures using Google Translate.

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