isiZulu added to Azure Translator and available across Microsoft services

We often lament the lack of localisation when it comes to services and solutions offered by big tech firms, which is why we were pleased to see Microsoft add isiZulu to its Azure Cognitive Services Translator.

This will therefore allow for texts and documents in isiZulu to be translated into all the languages supported by the Azure Translator, and vice versa.

“Zulu joins Swahili as the latest African language to be supported, and there are plans to add more of the continent’s most widely spoken languages as part of Microsoft’s mission to build meaningful cognitive products and services that improve accessibility and local engagement,” explains Microsoft regarding the addition in a press release sent to Hypertext.

“Integrations across Microsoft’s ecosystem include Microsoft 365 for translating text and documents, the Microsoft Edge browser and Bing search engine for translating whole webpages, SwiftKey for translating messages, LinkedIn for translating user-submitted content, and the Translator app for having multilingual conversations on the move, among others,” it adds.

The Azure Translator now supports more than 100 languages, so we are hoping more of the official South Africa ones are added to the mix down the line, especially with more businesses onboarding with Microsoft to get onto the cloud ever since local data centre presence was established in 2019.

“As the benefits and value of translation support become more evident, particularly for African languages, we will see capabilities being rolled out for more of the continent’s languages – ultimately helping break down language barriers and helping more people connect with each other and technology in a way that empowers them to do and achieve more,” adds Siya Madyibi, executive director of Corporate, External and Legal Affairs at Microsoft South Africa.


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