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JioPhone users can now use Google to read and translate text: Here is how

Ankita Chakravarti     July 22, 2020

Google's translation feature will no longer be limited to smartphones as the company will now make the feature available to JioPhone users and other KaiOS users. The company on Tuesday announced Google Lens camera-based translation feature for KaiOS users in India. The feature phones including the popular JioPhone and JioPhone 2 run on Kai operating system.

The new feature announced by Google for feature phone users will let them translate texts by simply clicking a picture of any real-world text. But this can only be accessed by KaiOS phones that support Google Assistant. Google has rolled out the feature for Indian users only.

"Today we are extending this capability to the millions of Google Assistant users on KaiOS devices in India. From Assistant, they can click the camera icon to simply point their phone at the real-world text (like a product label, street sign, or document, for example,) and have it read back in their preferred language, translated, or defined. Just long-press the center button from the home screen to get started with Assistant," Shriya Raghunathan, Product Manager Google Assistant, and Harsh Kharbanda, Product Manager Google Lens said in a blogpost.

The camera-based translation feature was announced by Google at the Google I/O in 2019. With Google Lens, users can point their camera at any text that they can see and translate it into more than 100 languages. Google Lens can also speak the words out loud for a better understanding. The feature was only available to smartphone users until now but now Google has extended it to the feature phone users. This has been done keeping in mind the non-English speakers in India. While many users can easily read and write in English but there are many who still struggle to understand it.

"Google Assistant has made it easy for users in India to find answers and get things done on their devices using their voice. Since its launch at Google for India in 2017, we've worked hard to bring more helpful features like integrated voice typing on KaiOS, voice-based language selection, and support for Indian languages to help first-time internet users overcome barriers to literacy and interact with technology and their devices more naturally," the blog read.

The Google Lens camera-based translation feature is currently available in English and supports several Indian languages including Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Marathi, and Tamil. It will soon be available in Kannada and Gujarati.

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