Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Google buys written language translater

17 May 2014, 17:24

San Francisco - Google on Friday confirmed it has bought a startup specializing in using smartphones to translate signs, billboards or other written words in real time.

Quest Visual and the technology built into its Word Lens application will become part of a Google team devoted to developing translation features and services.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed and Google declined to make any comment on the record.

"With Word Lens, we've seen the beginnings of what's possible when we harness the power of mobile devices to see the world in your language," Quest said in a blog post.

"By joining Google, we can incorporate Quest Visual's technology into Google Translate's broad language coverage and translation capabilities in the future."

Word Lens uses smartphone video cameras to "read" words in one language and translate them into another almost instantly without need for network connections.

Versions of the application have been tailored for smartphones powered by Apple or Android software as well as for Google Glass eyewear that links to the Internet.

The news came as Google this week began letting anyone in the United States buy Glass, priced at $1,500 a pair.

Google has promised lower-priced, fashionably versions of Glass in the not too distant future and has been prepping the market for their arrival.

Fashion industry veteran and jewelry artist Ivy Ross will take charge of Google's Glass efforts beginning Monday, according to the California-based technology titan.

"I look forward to answering the seemingly simple, but truly audacious questions Glass poses," Ross said in a post at Google+ social network.

"Can technology be something that frees us up and keeps us in the moment, rather than taking us out of it?"

Her resume includes stints at Calvin Klein, Swatch, Coach, Mattel, Bacchus & Lomb, Gap and, most recently, Art.com.

The decision to open the "Glass" test, or beta, program on Wednesday to anyone with enough money and curiosity came about a month after a one-day sale of the eyewear to the public.

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!


Tags google

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
DP Ruto accuses Raila of selling ...

DP Wiliam Ruto has castigated Raila Odinga for seeking western support to fund his 2017 election bid. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Peter Kenneth announces Uhuru 201...

Peter Kenneth has announced that he will support President Uhuru Kenyatta in the 2017 elections. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilon Ochieng
Labour Party to dump both Jubilee...

The Labour Party of Kenya is likely to avoid supportoing both the CORD and Jubilee factions during the 2017 General Elections. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Ukambani MP quits Jubilee, to run...

An Ukambani MP has quit the Jubilee Party, citing voter apathy as his reason behind leaving the ruling coalition. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Government launches probe into Po...

The government has launched an inquiry into the circumstances that could have led to two National Police Service helicopter accidents in August and September this year. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilwon Ochieng
Deputy Governor's ally found with...

The EACC has recovered KES 2 million in fake currency from a close ally of Deputy Governor for Tharaka Nithi Eliud Mati. Read more...