Situational Translator a free phrasebook for the modern traveller?

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Smartphones have enormous potential when travelling internationally, of course. At least, once you've got round any possible voice and data tariff issues in your chosen destination. Step in the good old fashioned phrase book - Situational Translator is somewhat plain, but many languages are covered, there are audio versions of each phrase throughout, there's a freeform translator, and hey, it's free, so why not? Grab it and go!

From the description in the Store:

Never be short of words when you are travelling to a new place with a new language. Situational Translator app packs for you all the common phrases which you use often in common situations like restaurant, travelling, movies, office, market or even in a romantic date. 

The app helps you get used to these words quickly as they are available to you in English letters. You can also use the text-to-speech feature to listen to the native language accent. If in case, we have not included the phrases which you need to use, you can always take help of our inbuilt translator.

Even though I don't travel internationally a lot, I'd like to (one day) and languages fascinate me, so I gave Situational Translator a whirl:


There are a dozen or so languages to pick from, covering a fair amount of the world (though nothing Asian); (right) starting to explore the traditional phrase book examples, here in French. 


Tapping on the playback icon for a phrase for the first time pops up a warning about data charges, possibly quite important if roaming is expensive where you are. The sound samples are streamed over the Internet, but as shown (right) if the appropriate language 'Speech' pack is installed into the core of your Windows Phone then that will be used instead (though see the caveat below).


There are ten 'situations' with prepared phrases, though I'd suggest that if you're using a phrasebook on a smartphone in order to progress a 'Romantic Date' then you probably won't get very far in that relationship....(!) (right) a selection of transport-related phrases - I wonder what's so special about 'Kamppi' that it's so vital to get there?(!)


The freeform translation service works very well indeed - quick and accurate, presumably using one of the big name translation servers online.

The option of installing the appropriate 'Speech' page in your Windows Phone in order to save on data charges is a good idea, but do note that installing such a pack is slow. Very slow. And it's Microsoft's fault. Unbelievably, adding in a new language to a Windows Phone takes around half an hour, for which your phone is out of operation. Once installed, you get a Microsoft male speaking the phrases rather than the default (streamed) female rendering, but both are of good quality - so I guess it depends on just how expensive roaming data charges are going to be for you in your country of choice?

You can currently download Situational Translator for free here in the Store.

Source / Credit: Windows Phone Store