Google has embedded its translation service into Android 6.0 Marshmallow, allowing text to be translated within apps rather than requiring the separate Google Translate app.
Barak Turovsky, product lead at Google Translate, explained that the new feature bypasses the need to jump between multiple apps when translating text in different languages.
"We face communication barriers every day. Switching back and forth between apps and screens to translate shouldn't be another one," he said.
"We've heard your feedback, and have worked with the Android team to make translating text, chats and other app content a whole lot easier."
Turovsky noted that, from this week, users of Android Marshmallow will be able to see text translated in 90 languages in some of the most popular apps used on the platform, including LinkedIn, TripAdvisor and WhatsApp.
Turovsky went on to explain how the translate feature works in practice. "To get started, you first need to have the Translate app downloaded on your Android phone. From there, just go to an app and highlight and select the text you want to translate," he said.
"This feature is already enabled in apps that use Android text selection behaviour."
The translation feature can be enabled easily with the addition of a few lines of code for developers using custom text selection behaviour in their apps.
This should ensure that the translation capabilities are extended to the wide range of apps available on Android through the Play store.
The move to tie Google's Translate service with Android more tightly is an obvious one for Google given that a claimed 500 million people use the service to translate a hefty 100 billion words every day.
Allowing translation to be carried out natively in apps rather than just in the dedicated Google Translate app could negate the need for services like Skype Translator on Android smartphones and tablets.
The move also looks to keep the Android ecosystem open and flexible as it provides a core set of features that can be adopted by a wider range of developers who can then build valuable services on top of Android's native capabilities.
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