Announcing the Microsoft Translator web page widget

The Microsoft Translator team is very proud to announce the technology preview of an innovative offering for web page translations. Attendees to MIX09 this week get a special invitation to try out the Microsoft Translator web page widget. We are also accepting registrations, and will be sending out more invites as they become available.image

What it is: Built on top of the Microsoft Translator AJAX API (also announced today) it is a small, customizable widget that you can place on your web page – and it helps you instantly makes the page available in multiple languages.

Who it is for: Anyone with a web page. If you can paste a small snippet of code into your page, you will be able to display the widget to your audience. No need to know programming intricacies, or how to call a javascript API. No need to write or install server side plug-ins for your specific software. 

What it offers: It provides a simple interface to anyone that visits the web page to select and translate content into a different language. You can see a demo on this page.

What is cool about it:

  • Innovative: Unlike other (including our) existing solutions, it does not take the users away from the site. The translations are in-place and instant. Users can hover over the translation to see the original. image
  • Easy to Use: Adding it to your page is as easy as copy and paste. Using it on the site is as easy as select language and click the button.
  • Customizable: You can pick the colors that best blend into your site design. You can pick the size that would best fit into your design (in fact the widget has an adaptive layout that better uses real estate when very wide). image
  • Thoughtful User Experience: Progressive rendering allows for the page to get translated progressively – without having the user stare at a white space while the translation is being performed. The translation toolbar that appears when the translation is kicked off provides a progress indicator, the languages selected and a way to turn off the translation.  
  • Localized: The UI is available in multiple languages – so users that come to your page with their browser set to a different language will see the widget in their language. 

Fun! What does it cost: It is completely free. You can put it on any site – commercial or non-commercial. You are only limited by the invite codes available at this point, but over the coming months we plan to make it more widely available.

What we are working on:

  • More polish: We will be looking for your feedback and continue to work on the fit and finish for the widget & toolbar UI.
  • More customizability: We will be evolving the default color palette available to you through the adoption portal. We will also be looking at your feedback on the overall design.
  • New Features: There are a bunch of very cool features that we are working on that will be added soon (your widgets will inherit most of these features). These include “Automatic” translations on page load, multiple layouts/views (bringing in the well received views feature of our bi-lingual viewer offering) and some surprises that we are working on with other teams at Microsoft.

Other questions:

I can’t get it to work. Where can I get support or provide feedback?

I would like to highlight that this is a technology preview release – so please do test it on your site before presenting to your users. The Microsoft Translator forums are now live. Feel free to head over and interact with other users. You will also find members of our team there who can help.

Can this save me the cost of doing human translation on my professional website?

Our goal (and that of most machine translation systems available today) is to provide what we call “useful” translations. While the technology is improving month to month, it will still take a long time before it can match human translation quality. We don’t recommend using machine translation for sensitive or highly critical information. You can learn more about translation quality here and here. You can learn more about how we do machine translation here.

How many languages do you support? When can you add support for <insert language here>?

Currently we support the following languages.

· Arabic

· Chinese (Simplified & Traditional)

· Dutch

· French

· German

· Italian

· Japanese

· Korean

· Polish

· Portuguese

· Russian

· Spanish

Polish was our most recent addition. Our goal is to keep adding languages as we get enough training data to meet our minimum (“useful”) quality criteria which include both standard measurements and human evaluations.

I am using a hosted service for my site/blog that does not let me use javascript widgets. What can I do?

We are looking to work with providers of hosted services to make adding the widget an easy process for their users. If your provider does not offer this, please let them and us know that you would like to see the widget work with your site.

Keep checking this post and our forums for announcements, known issues and more information. You can follow our MIX09 coverage on twitter and on Vikram’s blog.

Last Updated: 3/18/2009, 4:15 PM

Comments (56)

  1. mambycamara says:

    is ms translation only for english speaking? because there is no option to translate french (others) to a language different to english. why?

  2. Hi Mamby,

    With the web page widget, it is possible to translate French to any of our other languages.  This feature is not currently available on our landing page but is coming, likely in the next few months.



  3. mambycamara says:


    you are doing a good job !

    quality is the key….

  4. Quikboy says:

    Nice. But hopefully the Translator can do a better job of translating across multiple languages rather than going through mostly English translations.

    It’s not really a pressing issue, but can’t there be a more cooler icon than just some arrow to ‘translate’? I know it sounds silly, but I could probably think of more better ways of making a ‘translate’ button than just a simple arrow.

  5. Nikhil says:


    I like yo Have Translation for Indian Local Languages like Hindi, punjabi, tamil and many more.!

  6. Among a number of other things (especially the Silverlight 3 beta and the final version of Internet Explorer

  7. Vasudev says:

    Nice to kinow that Translator keeps on improving. I am already been using the earlier one and have put it on the blog since it was available. Hoping to get the invite for this one soon so as to put this one. But I think this can’t be put on Spaces as it doesnot support javascript. So a workaround can be expected? Also as Nikhil said, I would also like to see Translatot entering into Indian languages.Already WL Essentials available in various Indian languages.

  8. Vasudev says:

    Also, how to save the translated page?

  9. Paul says:

    What are the plans for other languages?  Could we see Swedish in the works?

  10. Many new and interesting developments on the Microsoft Web platform were unveiled at the MIX09 conference

  11. Many new and interesting developments on the Microsoft Web platform were unveiled at the MIX09 conference

  12. Microsoft Research Machine Translation team has just announce the availability of Microsoft Translator, a free web based translation service, also branded as Live Search Translator. It offers…

  13. The other day I had a feed come though on my RSS and Twitter from Mike Gannotti&#39;s blog talking about

  14. Webmonster says:

    how are support translate to Thai language.

  15. El reloj del progreso avanza contundente; se mide en años: Twitter=3, Web 2.0=5, Google=10, Yahoo=15,

  16. Hoy en día es vital poder buscar información variada de todo tipo en la red, y más aún lo es poder traducirla

  17. Hello, I am looking for an immediate office add-on to translate Spanish office documents to english. Any help is very much appreciated. Currently, office word takes to website for translation. This is not acceptable for confidential information.

    Thanks in advance.


  18. Use the Microsoft Translator Widget to translate your web site! Microsoft Translator team has announced

  19. Use the Microsoft Translator Widget to translate your web site! Microsoft Translator team has announced

  20. Back during MIX09 in March, the Microsoft Translator Widget for websites was announced . People with

  21. scronide says:

    Looks like you’re working on it, but the layout is a bit off across browsers. I don’t have Arial Unicode MS, which might play a part.

  22. tiago says:

    the translation to portuguese still needs a lot of work… so does any translator, I guess.

  23. DG says:

    Right after Mix09 announcement, I had registered for the widget, still no clue when the invitation code will be given.

  24. James Cherrill says:

    Tried Brandon’s blog under current Firefox – no widget, no errors or alerts.  Tried under IE8, ditto.  Switched IE8 to compatibility mode and hey-presto appeared and works.

    Translation into French seemed pretty basic, but highly readable. Very valuable (when it appears!).

  25. lbastos says:

    Is it available as a sdk on ?

  26. DG, the invite codes are being sent out in batches starting this week – you will receive it soon.

  27. James Cherrill,

    I tested Brandon’s site in firefox (and other browsers) on multiple machines and it worked everytime. Can you check if your javascript is turned off or if something is stripping javascript from webpages? Do note that it is being used only on the windows experience blog for now (

    Please post in our forums ( if you are still having problems.

    thank you!

    Vikram Dendi

    Microsoft Translator

  28. lbastos,

    We do have an interactive SDK ( getting started guides for ASP ( and PHP (

    For the AJAX API you need an invite code and for the HTTP/SOAP APIs you just need a Search Developer ID.

    Hope this helps!

    Vikram Dendi

    Microsoft Translator

  29. Eric Tee says:

    do you aware that it cannot translate contraction(I’ve, you’re)

  30. Eric Tee,

    Are you using the apostrophe character for your contraction?  If you are using that character it should work correctly in most cases.  


    Lane Rau

    Microsoft Translator team

  31. SwanieK says:

    I tried the one on your site and am really impressed with it.  It doesn’t take users away from the page as Google Translator does.  How can I get the invite code?

  32. SwanieK,

    You can register for an invite here:


    Lane Rau

    Microsoft Translator Team

  33. Microsoft cuenta con una unidad mundial de respuesta a emergencias, la subsidiaria mexicana recientemente

  34. The Microsoft Disaster Response is an internal group that assists governments and organizations on global

  35. Mail:

    No se si es posible colocar el traductor en un blogspot.


  36. 窪田です。 日ごろは MSDN オンラインの情報を中心にご紹介していますが、今回の話題は、Microsoft Translator です。 世の中にはたくさんオンライン版翻訳ツールがありますが、Microsoft

  37. laurent says:

    Great tool. 2 asks:

    – can’t you make it fully open by now? No more invitation required?

    – Why don’t you post the translator widget on, where all APIs for Live Services are available?

  38. I really like this Translator web page widget because I want my directory to be available in multiple languages.

    I tested the demo site and it was beyond my expectation.

  39. loulaoups says:


    What have I to do to receive the code for the widget?

    I want to install it on my blog.


  40. Lane Rau says:


    Go to to request an invite code.


    Lane Rau

    Microsoft Translator team

  41. SusanT says:

    desperate for invite code, waiting for ages 🙁

  42. SusanT: Can you check if you successfully completed the Microsoft Connect registration process (and allowed for Microsoft email communications)?

    If you did and still don’t have an invite – email me at mtcont at and we will get you one.

    Thank you for your patience!

    Vikram Dendi

    Microsoft Translator

  43. Susan T says:


    Many thanks for the reply.  I checked and email communication is allowed from my Microsoft Connect account.  However my invitation has not yet come througn.  I have just sent you a mail requesting an invite code.

    Susan Tsairi

  44. Thanks for sharing this informative post.

  45. enfermerostv says:

    no logro recibir el codigo

    "Have an invite code?

    * Invite code

    Widget invite codes start with WGT and Ajax API invite codes start with AJX. The AJAX API adoption page is here."

    es frustrante entrar tantas veces dando vueltaspor el mismo lugar

  46. Giriraj Daga says:

    Hello – This is very interesting. I would try it out today (When I get back home on my home PC). I stumbled upon this blog while looking for Microsoft translation services for Indian Language. I would be grateful if you could share some insights / latest developments / useful links for online translation service. I am working on an application that (hopefully) could provide realtime translation of audio / video. Any help / directions would be greatly appreciated. You can reach me at Thanks!

  47. Mike says:

    Any updates to widget coming?…Been waiting for a while now



  48. It’s amazing! And the design is pretty cool! I loved it! It worked a lot on my blog!

    See ya!!!

  49. Vlad says:

    Is it possible to write language names in popup menu in native language i.e english, русский, français etc. It will be better for foreign visitors to select their own language.

  50. Vlad says:

    Why for english language site we see prompt <Перевести эту страницу> in Russian? Is this  depend from referrer country? How to change this prompt into english  for english language site?

  51. Chris Wendt says:

    Hello Vlad,

    The widget appears in the browser’s configured  accept-language. In Internet Explorer you can see the browser’s accept-language under Tools.Options.Languages. The accept-language value defaults to the locale of the operating system.

    To change the language of the widget, modify your accept-language value using Tools.Options.Languages, clear your cache, and start Internet Explorer again. Most web browsers offer the same functionality.

  52. Great. Now here is a competitor to g00gle.

    Hope that this will provide us better serices.

  53. Kent says:

    I cannot seem to make this work on my site which is hosted by Microsoft on

    If I add the HTML to the page then the widget appears, but nothing happens when you click it.  Has anyone gotten this to work?  If not, can we ask for someone who is fmiliar with the code to test it out on an website?


  54. Carrie says:

    I am having a problem adding the widget to my WordPress blog. Can the widget be used with WordPress?

  55. Hi Carrie – it should work fine (I use it on my blog at Can you email us at with the issue that you are seeing with wordpress? Are you talking about a hosted blog by any chance?

  56. smokeandmirror says:

    I LOVE that the visitor STAYS on the web site…

    I wish the widget could have a smaller footprint.


    Put the MS-Translator hyperlink on the top row.

    And get rid of the last row (get rid of the little buttons).

    Basically, I love the functionality (and easy implementation) but its very cumbersome interface-wise.

    I wish I could make it slicker.