If you're heading overseas, your smartphone can help you come to grips with a foreign tongue.
Google Translate is handy for making yourself understood during short interactions, such as when asking for directions and talking to shopkeepers.
You can dictate or type an English phrase and quickly produce a written and spoken translation.
You can display the foreign text full-screen in order to show the other person - which helps if you're struggling with your pronunciation.
It's also possible to bookmark key phrases, such as "Where is the train station?", so you can call them up quickly.
Google Translate will also translate foreign phrases back into English, although iTranslate Voice is easier to use during an extended conversation. It puts two large flags at the bottom of the screen and you simply tap your language before you speak. If the other person has an iGadget with iTranslate Voice installed you can link them via Bluetooth.
By default iTranslate Voice doesn't let you correct your English dictation before it's translated and read aloud, which could create awkward moments, but you can disable "auto speak".
Google Translate translates your voice on the screen but doesn't say the foreign words aloud until you press the button. It's also possible for one or both people to type their answers into Google Translate if it struggles with your accents and pronunciations.
In terms of accuracy both tend to do well with Romanic languages such as French and Italian, but switch to Japanese and Google Translate offers more reliable results.
Keep in mind that both apps rely on internet access when running on Apple's software iOS, while Google Translate on Android offers limited offline features if you download a language pack.
Both apps are useful – but in a tight spot Google Translate is more likely to save the day.
iTranslate Voice $4.19 (iOS)
- FFX Aus