There are two main types of foreign language apps for iPhone. There are apps that actually help you actually learn a new language, and apps that can help you quickly and correctly translate words or phrases. The five apps on this list are of the latter type. If you need an iPhone app that can translate a foreign language for you, these are our favorites.
1. SayHi Translate
Watch CNet’s hands-on demo of SayHi Translate in the video above.
SayHi Translate offers translation support for over 100 languages, including country-specific dialects. The translations you produce can be shared via email, SMS, Facebook, or Twitter. While it’s not perfect, various reviewers have praised the overall accuracy of the translations.
What sets SayHi Translate apart from the competition is the app’s clean user interface. Additionally, the app makes it easy to go back into your translation history and recover old conversations.
Watch TekSocial’s review of iTranslate in the video above.
iTranslate supports over 80 languages. This app is especially appealing for people who need romanizations in their translations (aka transcribing the characters of another alphabet into Latin letters). This makes iTranslate ideal for people who need to read Chinese or Japanese characters, but are not familiar with the language at all.
Another great feature of this app is the multi-translation option. Unlike many other apps, iTranslate offers dictionaries that can help you isolate the perfect translation for what you want to say and who you want to say it to.
Additionally, predictive text options and swipe gestures to copy and paste make iTranslate an app that is very fast to type in. This speeds up translation, saving you time.
3. Spanish-English Translation Dictionary and Verbs
Watch M_TECH_M’s hands-on demo of this app in the video above.
Developed by Ultralingua, Spanish-English Translation Dictionary and Verbs is an iOS app. Ultralingua actually offers a number of different translation apps for iOS and Mac, but we’re focusing on this Spanish-English translator app for two main reasons.
Firstly, as the number of Spanish speakers rises in the US, an increasing number of Americans need to interact in person or over business correspondence in Spanish. Secondly, this particular Ultralingua app has gotten rave reviews from USA Today and the New York Times, as quoted on the App Store page.
This app will appeal to iPhone users because of its little, thoughtful features. You can easily translate numbers into words (great for learning how to say 267 in Spanish), adjustable fonts to ensure readability, and tons of idioms and slang. This app is the most expensive on our list, but $19.99 is well worth it for the in-depth verb conjugations alone.
Watch YouTuber iPodHacks142 review the Tap-Translate app in the video above.
Tap-Translate is a translation tool for your mobile web browser. It can translate short phrases, paragraphs, or an entire page. You can also hear the translated word pronounced, in addition to seeing the translation on the screen.
This app supports over 55 language variants. Set-up can be a bit confusing, but those who have used this app have raved about it.
The only downside? Tap-Translate only works with Safari, so if you prefer another mobile browser then you’re out of luck. Additionally, not all websites will work with this app. Despite the limitations, however, this app provides a useful web browsing translation service.
5. Translate Professional
Translate Professional is a translation tool that supports over 50 languages. No Internet connection is required to access 300 of the professionally-translated phrases in the offline area of the app. Using in-app purchases, you can acquire 18 different voices for the app, which will enable you to hear what the translated phrases should sound like when spoken aloud, and the voice can be slowed down or speeded up.
This app is useful for people who are traveling abroad, as they can use either the audio or on-screen translations to communicate with others.
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