Surface tablet users who travel a great deal have a handy new app that will make mobile translation easier. The Bing Translator App for Windows 8 and Windows RT supports up to forty languages with a variety of features for convenience.

Bing Translator App

This free app is now available in the Windows Store and includes the following functions:

  • Translates 7 languages using camera
  • Translates into 40 languages
  • Detects an unknown language
  • Offline language packs free users from roaming fees
  • Text to speech lets users hear proper pronunciation
  • Share charm allows translation inside other apps
  • Snap function moves translation to the side for multi-tasking

Camera Translation

Arguably the handiest feature of this app translates the image on a tablet’s camera allowing users to read menus and street signs in an unfamiliar tongue. Just point and shoot to see a translation of text from the following languages into any of over forty languages:

  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • English
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish

Downloadable Language Packs

Another nice feature of the Bing Translator App is the offline support available from downloadable language packs. With one of these, a user need not be connected to the Internet to translate, though some functionality like text to speech is lost. Downloadable language packs not only help users save on roaming fees, quick translation can be critical for communicating with others when away from a stable Internet connection.

Windows 8 App Compatibility

The Bing Translator App fits nicely inside the Windows 8 and Windows RT modern interface. When users need to translate text inside another app, they can simply select the text, swipe from the right, and then choose the share charm to share the text to the Bing Translator App. They can also use the Windows 8 snap function to push the app off to the side while using another app on the screen.

What Do You Think?

Have you had a chance to try the new Bing Translator App? Do you agree that apps like this demonstrate Microsoft’s commitment to building an ecosystem with tablets as functional as they are fun?