There’s no shortage of translation apps on the App Store. You can even use Google Translate in Safari browser to get the job done. But in iOS 11, you can just ask Siri to translate a phrase for you.
You can do this for a word or a sentence. Right now, this only works from English (US) to a couple of different languages. While the feature set is quite limited, the process of asking Siri to translate something is quite straight forward. This even works when you’re in the Type to Siri mode.
For this to work, first make sure your Siri language is set to US English.
If it isn’t, go to Settings -> Siri & Search -> Language and select English (United States).
Right now Siri will translate English to French, German, Italian. Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.
How to Ask Siri to Translate Text
Just ask Sir something like “How to do you say ‘x phrase’ in ‘y language’”. Something like “how do you say which way to the train station in Chinese”.
Sir will speak out the translated text so that you and others around you can hear it. Plus, it will show the translated text written in both the original language and it’s phonetic pronunciation in English (if available).
You’ll also find a play button. Tap on it again to reply the phrase.
Use Third Party Apps to Do More
This is just the beginning of translation feature in Siri and we hope it will get better with time. Right now, all you can do is translate from one language (English) to others. There’s no way to translate something back to English.
In the above scenario, after you’ve asked for directions to the train station in Chinese, Siri won’t be able to transit the reply from Chinese to English.
What do you think of the translation feature in Siri? Will you be using it on your next trip abroad? Share with us in the comments below.