All Headphones With Google Assistant Will Soon Become Babelfish

By Holly Brockwell on at

Google Translate is full of wizardry that the Big G has historically been pretty bad at shouting about. For instance, hardly anyone seems to know that you can hold your phone camera over a menu in another language and see it in English via the magic of Word Lens, bought by Google in 2o14.

Similarly, the fact that Google's Apple AirPods competitor, Pixel Buds, can do real-time language translation as you're talking to someone (!) seems to have passed a lot of people by, but the latest announcement will hopefully go some way to changing that.

Spotted by Droid-Life, a key sentence on a Pixel Buds support page changed from “Google Translate on Google Pixel Buds is only available on Pixel phones” to “Google Translate is available on all Assistant-optimised headphones and Android phones.”

That means if you've got a set of headphones or earphones with Google Assistant built-in, including Google's wired USB-C earbuds, you'll be able to invoke the Babelfish function (note: not its official name) and translate in real-time. The fact that this has mostly slipped under the radar so far goes to show what an incredible age we live in: "Real-time translation? Meh. Haven't you seen there are new virtual reality games available that I can download from basically the air and start playing in a few minutes?"

What a world.