A new iPhone app called Word Lens has been developed that instantly translates printed words from one language to another with a built-in video camera, in real time!
Just by pointing the phone's camera at signs in foreign languages the iPhone app instantly translates text right in front of you. The app works without an internet connection.
The free-to-download app, which uses optical character recognition technology to translate words on the fly, gives you translation on the go: results appear immediately on your video screen when you need it, anywhere in the world.
The current app can only translate between English and Spanish, but Otavio Good, one of the developers behind the Word Lens, said he is working on to support other languages soon, eventually getting all the way across the globe.
A demonstration video posted to YouTube earlier this week racked up more than 2 million views.
Word Lens, however, does not recognize handwriting or stylized fonts and was not designed to read books, although it can read a few individual words.
The new app is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPod touch (4th generation).