Recently, Google quietly began to test auto translation for app reviews in the developer console. Today, the company publicly announced that same feature and began rolling it out to all devs. Now, when they log in to their control panel, they can see the reviews in their preferred language, along with the original text. Neat.


Of course, this still isn't a replacement for  native fluency, but it should aid developers in troubleshooting problems that users on the other side of the language barrier discover. This, coupled with replies to reviews, enables a high degree of communication between devs and users, which can only be a great thing.

Source: Google+

Thanks, Sergii!

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • silaslenz

    And it annoys me. I should be able to choose which languages shouldn't be translated...

    • http://galaxyyarchive.info/ Mitko

      But you can still see the original text from the looks of the screen?

      • silaslenz

        Yeah, but I have to click a button.

    • Christof Buechi

      I definitely agree with you - its very annoying!

  • http://twitter.com/Sp1tfirestarter Marius Oprisan

    Well, no wonder app descriptions turned up in my native language instead of English. This option is rather crappy, Google translate is far from being an useful tool. I prefer app descriptions in English, but I guess Google leaves me no choice. Descriptions translated from English to my native language make absolutely no sense. Poor move

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/eric-ravenscraft/ Eric Ravenscraft

      This isn't app descriptions. Regular users shouldn't see this at all. This is just for developers, and it provides both the translation *and* the original. If app descriptions changed for you, then you're having some other issue.

      • http://twitter.com/Sp1tfirestarter Marius Oprisan

        Nope, it's not an issue, it's Google's choice of testing things and it's all f...ing random. Some apps' descriptions are displayed in English with the option of translating them to my native language, some of them are in English without any option of translating and some of them are in my native language without the option of translating them to English. And the ones that appear in my native language are not made by developers in my country, their description was in English all the time until few days ago. It's an awful mix.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

          What Eric is saying is the feature you're talking about is something similar, but completely different and not what we're describing today. You're right -translated app descriptions (auto-translated by developers ahead of time, not live by Google using a toggle button, mind you) could definitely suck sometimes, but again - that's on developers. When Google offers to auto-translate, it shows you a toggle button.

          • http://twitter.com/Sp1tfirestarter Marius Oprisan

            I know it's a completely different thing from the options described in the article, only wanted to point out it's a complete mess. I hope they make out their mind once and for all and show app descriptions in a single language giving the user the option of translating the description or not. Right now it's rather annoying instead of being useful. If I read an app description that was translated in Romanian I certainly can't understand a single phrase, even though I'm Romanian, funny, huh ?

  • http://geniousatplay.blogspot.com/ Bikram Agarwal

    Neat feature. Otherwise, sometimes when I'm a little busy, it is really irritating to copy the text, open translator, paste the text and see the translation. Having the translation right there is really helpful.

    Another +1 to Google team for having the translation shown by default and showing the "original msg" after a click and not the other way around.

    The "reply to review" thing is a little wonky right now. When I post a reply, it shows up on the app's play store page almost immediately; but if I refresh my developer console, my reply vanishes from the dev console (returns after 3-4 hours) while it is still visible in the play store page.