iPhones are all set to comprise a new ‘universal translator’ app, which would translate languages for the user.
The app, called VoiceTra4U-M, translates voices from 13 languages and text from an additional 10, and has been designed by the Universal Speech Translation Advanced Research Consortium, or U-STAR.
The app will be rolled out in the App Store in time for the London Olympics, when millions of people from various countries are expected to have friendly conversations.
According to Discovery News, the app works in two modes: face-to-face, where a user will have to speak into the mic and then get a translation, or during a phone call, and is functional on an iPad 2 and iPhone 4G models.
However, there are limitations to the app. The chat time is only an hour and designed to work best with travel-related questions and answers such as "How much is it to get from Grand Central to Wall Street by taxi?" rather than more complex exchanges about say, postmodern literary theory.
By making it available during the Olympics, the designers are hoping that it will help people gather lots more speech and vocabulary data and learn to do better translations.