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Agile Computing: Blog Post

Lost in Translation? Transfluent Solution for Language Translations

When machine translation produce gibberish and traditional services are too slow

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Please tell us, what is Transfluent all about and what do you do?

Jani Penttinen: Transfluent is the ultimate high-tech solution for language translations in social media, services and applications. We do what traditional services cannot: fast, dynamic, but also high-quality translation. Imagine typing a tweet in English and having it appear in fluent Chinese a few minutes later on Weibo, the leading Chinese social media site.

Tell us about the app launch with Zendesk.

Penttinen: We just launched a new language localization app for Zendesk's cloud-based Customer Support solution. The app enables support agents to interact in a customer's native language.

Who is your target audience and how do you intend to reach them?

Penttinen: Transfluent has been integrated into Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, SINA Weibo, Unity, Zendesk and Magento, and offers an API that makes it easy to integrate professional translations into any application. For Facebook, we work with many "power users," such as soccer clubs. Other notable users include actor Jared Leto and his band Thirty Seconds to Mars, who use it to reach Facebook and Twitter fans in 10 different languages, as well as the world famous DJ, Paul Oakenfold, who talks to his fans in Chinese. On the B2B side, we are working with customer support companies like Zendesk and eCommerce platforms like Magento.

You have several gaming applications, please tell us more about this...and why gaming?

Penttinen: The gaming market is particularly fast-paced and games are a worldwide pastime. A game maker can not afford to wait several weeks for his or her game to be translated into other languages. For example, Unity is a flexible and high-performance development platform used to make creative and intelligent, interactive 3D and 2D experiences. Our development plug-in gives game developers direct access to Transfluent's rapid language localization and translation technology directly from Unity's developer platform, saving precious go-to-market time. Unity's two-million-plus developers can easily create games for global markets using Transfluent's language localization capabilities, which are embedded directly into their development platform. Not only is it easier for developers to target specific languages, the translations can be made rapidly and at the same time they write the code.

What is the viral aspect of your product?

Penttinen: Everyone wants to be big in China or otherwise globally popular, and Transfluent offers the perfect tools to make that happen. By far the biggest reason artists aren't using Transfluent yet is that they do not know it is even possible to communicate with foreign audiences in their own language.

How will you make money? What's the business model?

Penttinen: Our pricing model is very straightforward. We charge for every word that is translated, per language, so your total bill is "number of words x number of languages x price per word."

Who are your competitors?

Penttinen: It seems no other company is combining the power of automation with human interaction at this point, so the competitors out there are either machine-based translators, which often lead to inaccurate or blatantly wrong translations, or translation agencies, where you need to test, find and contract before you can actually get down to business.

How do you differentiate from your competitors?

Penttinen: We are powered by a unique combination of technical expertise and deep understanding of languages. Usually translation companies are non-technical, and tech companies have very little clue about multilingual communication. We focus on building easy-to-use integrations to the tools businesses use to communicate. The key is to make it as effortless as possible to use languages. Our vision is that translating content to the customer's language should become a fairly standard thing to do, and the only way to get there is by integrating the translations to the familiar tools that are already in use.

What business or technology could yours disrupt?

Penttinen: About 2.7 billion people - almost 40% of the world's

population - are online today. However, only half of them actually understand English. Even of those who do understand English, most will react much better to communication in their native language. If you truly want to connect to the "World" Wide Web, you need to offer more than the English language. We help facilitate this - if you want to reach new marketplaces or a new fan base, offering multilingual services is of essence.

Who founded the company? When? What can you tell me about the story of the company's founding?

Penttinen: I founded the company in early 2011 and we received about 2M USD in seed funding from a number of private investors, angels and Tekes.

What is your distribution model? Where to buy your product?

Penttinen: Transfluent re-sellers or partners. For a quote, email [email protected]. If you are interested in Facebook or Twitter translation, you may also create an account and use our easy self-service interface by logging in here:

About Transfluent

Transfluent is the ultimate high-tech solution for language translations in social media, web games and apps. Based in Sunnyvale, CA,Transfluent has been integrated to Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, SINA Weibo, Zendesk and Magento and offers an API which makes it easy to integrate professional translations to any application. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter at @Transfluent_EN

More Stories By Xenia von Wedel

Xenia von Wedel is a Tech blogger and Enterprise Media Consultant in Mountain View, serving clients in a variety of industries worldwide. She is focused on thought leadership content creation and syndication, media outreach and strategy. She mainly writes about Enterprise, B2B solutions, social media and open source software, but throws the occasional oddball into the mix. Buy her a coffee if you like her article:

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