Luganda speakers are about to enjoy the internet more than ever as the Google translate feature will start supporting the language on top of other 23 new languages.
Google estimates that the language is spoken by over 20 million people in Uganda and Rwanda. This was announced at the recent annual developer conference, I/O 2022, where the search giant made a host of exciting new announcements for its products and services.
The translation feature uses a new machine learning technique. Google Translate has added 24 new languages to its translation service, taking the number of languages it supports to a total of 133. Among these 24 newly-added languages apart from Luganda (Uganda and Rwanda), 8 are in use in Africa.
The list includes Ewe (Ghana), Krio (Sierra Leone), Lingala (the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Angola, and the Republic of South Sudan), Oromo (Kenya & Ethiopia), Sepedi (South Africa), Tigrinya (Eritrea and Ethiopia), Tsonga (Eswatini, Mozambique, South Africa, and Zimbabwe) and Twi (Ghana).
The addition of these new languages including Luganda also presents a technical milestone for Google Translate since these are the first languages added using Zero-Shot Machine Translation.
This means Google can directly translate between language pairs unseen in training, and translate from one language
This is a complete list of the new languages now available in Google Translate:
Assamese: Used by about 25 million people in Northeast India
Aymara: Used by about two million people in Bolivia, Chile and Peru
Bambara: Used by about 14 million people in Mali
Bhojpuri: Used by about 50 million people in northern India, Nepal and Fiji
Dhivehi: Used by about 300,000 people in the Maldives
Dogri: Used by about three million people in northern India
Ewe: Used by about seven million people in Ghana and Togo
Guarani: Used by about seven million people in Paraguay and Bolivia, Argentina and Brazil
Ilocano: Used by about 10 million people in northern Philippines
Konkani: Used by about two million people in Central India
Krio: Used by about four million people in Sierra Leone
Kurdish (Sorani): Used by about eight million people, mostly in Iraq
Lingala: Used by about 45 million people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Angola and the Republic of South Sudan
Luganda: Used by about 20 million people in Uganda and Rwanda
Maithili: Used by about 34 million people in northern India
Meiteilon (Manipuri): Used by about two million people in Northeast India
Mizo: Used by about 830,000 people in Northeast India
Oromo: Used by about 37 million people in Ethiopia and Kenya
Quechua: Used by about 10 million people in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, and surrounding countries
Sanskrit: Used by about 20,000 people in India
Sepedi: Used by about 14 million people in South Africa
Tigrinya: Used by about eight million people in Eritrea and Ethiopia
Tsonga: Used by about seven million people in Eswatini, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe
Twi: Used by about 11 million people in Ghana
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