Travelling the world, and understanding the language in a foreign country is getting easier, with Google announcing some major new features for the instant camera translation feature in Google Translate.

The instant camera feature allows you to easily translate printed or written material into another language simply by pointing your camera at it. In this update, Google has added over 60 source languages including Arabic, Hindi, Malay, Thai and Vietnamese, letting you translate text into more than 100 supported languages.

The Google Translate Instant Camera feature previously required you to select the input language, however with this latest update you simply open the app, point the camera at a sign, menu etc. and Google will automatically detect the language – a handy feature in areas where more than one dialect is spoken

The new features are powered for the first time by Google’s Neural Machine Translation (NMT) technology allowing them to produce more accurate and, more importantly, more natural translations with errors reduced by up to 55-85% in some cases. Google is including NMT in their offline language packs so you won’t use data on the go, but you will get higher quality translations if you connect to the internet. 

Google has also lessened the amount of flickering seen previously when using Instant Camera with translations now more stable on screen. It’s easier to access the Instant Camera feature,  as well as the Scan and Import camera options with shortcuts for each now at the bottom of the app. 

As with all Google app updates you’ll see these features rolling out over the next few weeks. Check the iOS app store, or Google Play to make sure you’re up to date.