Babylon Translator

☀☀☀☀ Babylon Translator, available for both Apple and Android, is equal to Google Translate. The app divides language into smaller categories to be more accurate. One addition I like: you can shake your phone to clear the text box. The app makes translation easy, with a look similar to Webster’s. The app benefits journalists who report beyond the limits of their native language. — Connor Van Siclen

Microsoft Translator

☀☀☀☀☀ In this corner, the challenger, Microsoft Translator! In the other corner, the reigning champion, Google Translate! Microsoft burst onto the scene with real time conversation translating, photo recognition, and speech-to-text. Available on the App Store and Google Play, Microsoft Translator is vying for the title of best translator app. LifeHacker says it is gaining ground. It is limited in terms of languages, but accurate, providing journalists with an alternative to Google. — Cole Feinbloom


☀☀☀☀☀ Rather than teaching you a new language with a formal curriculum, HelloTalk helps you learn just by communicating. Search for a native speaker in one of more than 100 languages. Converse with your best matches. Engage in free audio and video calls with your learning partners. Though it competes with a similar app called HiNative, HelloTalk is better, with a larger community (estimated at 3 million). Journalists could use this app to broaden their cultural understanding as they learn new languages. Available for both iPhone and Android. Nisa Ayral

☀☀☀☀☀ HelloTalk is part social media and part translator. It helps people learn languages through conversations with native speakers. You can connect through chat, free voice calls or a public posting board. Translate, correct grammar and transcribe audio to text (or vice versa) within a text conversation or post. Not feeling chatty? You can translate text without having to talk to someone. For journalists, this app can provide a great connection to sources in foreign countries. The app is available on both iTunes and Google Play. — Leah Soto


☀☀☀☀ Speak into the phone, and SayHi will write out your comment in the desired language. Both your message and then translation are in text-messaging format. Star your favorites. Use SayHi’s list of frequently used phrases. You can share your messages by email, text, or through Facebook. The app made this list of best iPhone translation apps. It is a useful tool for journalists reporting abroad, or for anyone who can’t communicate because of a language barrier. The app works on Android or iOS.Sarah Hunt

Speak & Translate

☀☀☀ If Google Translate had a simpler, better-looking sibling, Speak & Translate would be it. With intuitive, polished design, Speak & Translate uses Apple’s voice recognition software to quickly translate voice or text into 100+ languages. However, like any translation software, it is not perfect. If you’re looking to translate more than a simple conversation, this might not be the app for you. Additionally, ads are constantly popping up in the free version and it only allows a handful of translations a day before asking you to buy the upgrade for $15.Cat Supawit


☀☀☀☀ Tinycards is a Duolingo study app. The company’s language-learning programs are well-known. But Tinycards covers all subjects. The app has flashcards for everything from “Morse Code” to “Greek Gods”. See what’s trending, pick a category, memorize the flashcards and take a quiz. The difficulty levels increase slowly. The app also works like social media, where the user can create a profile, find people to follow, and upload their own content (sets of flashcards). Journalists can use the app to gain knowledge on a variety of subjects, or learn a language. Details here. — Kyle Dowd

iTranslate Voice

☀☀☀ iTranslate Voice can speak 42 languages. You say something and the app then immediately repeats it in the language you’ve chosen. It also allows you to view your frequently used phrases and is a basic but accurate app. There are more features within the app that can be purchased for those who have Google Play. This app could be useful to journalists who do not speak the same language as sources they need to interview and for that purpose I would recommend that journalists try it. — Alexis Berdine

iHandy Translator

☀☀ In iHandy Translator you can text-to-translate in 52 languages. But ads and redirection to other apps distract the user. With the free version, you can upload your translations to Facebook and Twitter and view your user history. An ad-less version of iHandy will cost you $2.99 and will allow you to speak and view phrases. I found the free Google Translate to be much more efficient. —Jamee Lind

Google Translate

☀☀☀☀ Google Translate allows users to move seamlessly between a multitude of languages. The free app can copy translation to your clipboard or share it through iO.S. apps such as Messages, Mail, iCloud Drive, and the Note apps. Useful features: speech-to-text narration, live translation with your camera and handwritten text translations. You can download an offline translation file, as well as ‘star’ translations for future reference. Journalists can use this to help close the language with sources, or assist in communication when visiting other countries.  This app is a versatile resource, though the translations themselves need some improvement. Hailey Koebrick

☀☀☀☀☀ Google Translate will blow your mind with its real-time photo translator. Click the camera button and focus your lens over a restaurant menu in a foreign language—and instantly view the translation (from more than 90 languages). Users can type, speak and use photos to get translations. Reviewers have used the app to converse with clients who speak another language, verify a word, read, or to learn a whole new language. Journalists can use this to get interviews they otherwise couldn’t; the minimalist Google format makes it easy. A must-have app for cultured individuals. —Jamee Lind

☀☀☀☀ Google Translate is a helpful tool that I use frequently for school and for my daily life. The tool gives people easy access and quick responses from a language translator. It is user-friendly, with more than 100 language options. The tool has the option for users to type, speak, or take a picture of what they want translated.  While some of the translations are not always 100% accurate, the words and phrases have the gist of what is trying to be said. A translation community helps correct words and phrases, with people earning points and badges for their contributions. Despite its imperfections, I think Google Translate is one of the most useful tools offered by the company. — Ashley Altmann


☀ ☀ ☀ Waygo translates text from Chinese, Japanese and Korean to English. Its features include an offline translator and a photograph text translator. The translations made sense, without obvious garbles. Drawbacks: it was a little slow, and you can only do 10 translations a day before having to pay for the premium service. Waygo would be excellent for journalists because the translation process is simple and the setup is minimal. —Garrison Murphy