A new app has landed on the iPhone that enables users to instantly translate street signs from Spanish to English simply by pointing their camera at what they want to understand.
See the app in action in the clip below
WordLens harnesses augmented reality and optical character recognition technology and a Babelfish-esque translator to work up unfamiliar phrases into rudimentary English, which it then pastes the translation over the sign you’re looking it.
Right now, it only works with Spanish and is only really good enough to translate fairly simple phrases. But that oughtn’t to be the case for too much longer.
Developer Otavio Good told TechCrunch: “It tries to find out what the letters are and then looks in the dictionary. Then it draws the words back on the screen in translation.
“The translation isn’t perfect, but it gets the point across.”
You can grab Word Lens now for free, with the Spanish to English language pack charged at $4.99. If you want to get onboard, you’ll need an iPhone 4 or 3G S.