Recently published research by prestigious research center Research&Markets points to machine translation market having a value close to $1Bn ($983.3M) within 6 years. Non-stop advancements and refining of algorithms mean that by year 2022, the increase in the sophistication of translation technology will be able to provide machine translation versions with minimal errors and pretty good grammatical coherence, much more than what is capable to provide nowadays. Machine translation has become a key technology for large software companies, may of whom have either developed their own technology or have acquired machine translation companies Why facebook, twitter want to own machine translation in order to incorporate MT as a core technology in their business.
The scope for use and application of machine translation has been considerably widened over the last few years. From desktop applications which could be run on a PC or server, based on language transfer rules, and used typically to translate documents rapidly, the advent of statistical machine translation has opened up the field in the last 10 years.
The possibility to serve MT as SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) over secure cloud services is a key area that the report expects to add a substantial opportunity for growth to the machine translation market. Over the last few years, cloud computing has become very affordable so that ubiquity of services has allowed the surge of truly global digital markets and as a result an increase in the demand for cloud-based translation. Some translation companies have based their business completely on web services, whilst some translation tools are completely dependent on the cloud for their infrastructure, with minimum desktop versions (normally just the editing tool). The growth in cloud computing will boost even more the growth of the machine translation market, probably as a result of translation APIs plugging in to websites to offer instant translation. Machine Translation for content in regional languages, moreover, has spurred the growth of this market in the past few years.
R&D and the technological applications by several providers have made it possible for machine translation technology to be integrated seamlessly into a wide range of services, from enterprise-level systems to smartphones. Machine translation apps in mobile devices can provide instant translation of multilingual text and even voice recognition and translation.
Further key findings from the study point to:
Government grants and initiatives, particularly in the EU Europe has helped boost market growth in the U.S and Europe mostly. For example, Spain will invest $90M in natural language processing technologies over the next 5 years. http://www.pangeanic.com/news/spain-to-invest-90m-e-in-natural-language-processing-technologies/. The presence of providers like Microsoft Translator or Google Translate, two of the largest US technology providers, has made SMT popular via their free online engines.
Machine translation applied in the healthcare sector is expected to gain market share in the next six years due to the increase for accurate, timely translation of large volumes of content in various industries.
The demand for both statistical or hybrid machine translation solutions (like PangeaMT) has increased over the past few years, due to its accuracy and effectiveness in several language pairs over old-fashioned rule-based systems, which take a much longer time to develop – with added costs. The research shows statistical and hybrid will remain the favorite market implementations up to 2022.
MT providers commercialize their products /machine translation services through their own websites. Sometimes they sell indirectly also through specialist channels or agents. Nevertheless, the majority of MT providers favor a direct sales channel. Machine Translation solutions are available
– as commercial software solutions or
– as free, web-based applications (like popular Microsoft Bing Translator or Google Translate).
For a full version of the report:
PangeaMT, a machine translation platform designed for flexible API translation
Manuel Herranz (Pangeanic) at the TAUS Translation Technology Showcase Webinar (April 2014)