Auto Translation

December 3rd Post by Paolo Cuomo

Keep in touch with the fast-moving world of technology innovation in insurance via InsTech London. #insurtech

I’m old enough to remember back to the astonishment of Windows 3.1 and then the palpable excitement when Microsoft launched Windows 95. Those were the iPhone launches of their day; and without today’s social media and orchestrated leaks the magic was even greater.

I no longer associate Microsoft with such impactful launches. This may be a change in style or may be they simply don’t have much that’s truly special anymore…

A couple of weeks back at their #FutureDecoded event at the ExCel in Docklands they managed a rather understated UK (beta) launch of something that will become truly world changing: namely real-time auto-translation of voice.

Now, Microsoft don’t hold some magic patent to this technology, and in fact I am sure there are other companies out there already doing it better, but by including it in Skype (though currently only on the desktop version) it will help it go mainstream rapidly. And while I am sure that it will start as a gimick between international friends who already use English as a common language, as it gets better you imagine it starting to be used for business interactions.

I have yet to hear from anyone using it regularly, and with the formal launch at the end of the year, it may be that we only really start talking about it in 2017. But I’m rapidly adding it to my list of “wow, that took hold faster than we expected” techs. Let’s see. On va voir. Vidiamo.