Back in January at CES, Google announced an Interpreter Mode for Smart Displays and speakers. The real-time translation tool is now coming to Assistant for Android and iOS with a new Smart Replies capability.

Like on smart home devices and Assistant headphones, you can launch Interpreter Mode by colloquial saying “Hey Google, be my German translator” or “Hey Google, help me speak Thai.” Assistant slides up a sheet and you can start speaking.

You’ll then see and hear the translated conversation on your phone. After each translation, the Assistant may present Smart Replies, giving you suggestions that let you quickly respond without speaking—which can make your conversations faster and even more seamless.

Your input appears at the top of the screen and the translated output below. A carousel of Smart Replies is underneath so the person you’re communicating with can quickly tap on a chip. The other person can otherwise hit the blue microphone to verbally respond. There are also options to copy the translation and have it repeated.

Assistant Interpreter Mode Android

In addition to “Auto,” you can switch to Manual or Keyboard input at the bottom of the Interpreter Mode. Typing is useful for quiet environments, while the former allows for control over when Assistant starts listening for each participant. In total, Interpreter Mode supports 44 languages.

On phones, this functionality is also found in the dedicated Google Translate client. However, Google touts the integration as removing the “need to download another app.”

Google first demoed the mobile translation capability for India back in September. Assistant Interpreter Mode is rolling out to Android and iOS around the world starting today.

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Abner Li

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