by Joe White
August 13, 2013
Facebook announced recently that it's acquired Mobile Technologies, developer of the popular offline translation app Jibbigo Translator. The news reached us in a status update from Facebook's Tom Stocky, who said:
I'm excited to announce that we've agreed to acquire Mobile Technologies, a company with an amazing team that's behind some of the world's leading speech recognition and machine translation technology. With this deal we will welcome some of the industry's most talented people to our engineering teams in Menlo Park, California. It has always been our mission to make the world more open and connected. Although more than a billion people around the world already use Facebook every month, we are always looking for ways to help connect the rest of the world as well. Voice technology has become an increasingly important way for people to navigate mobile devices and the web, and this technology will help us evolve our products to match that evolution. We believe this acquisition is an investment in our long-term product roadmap as we continue towards our company's mission.As a reminder, Jibbigo allows users to translate language easily, and includes support for offline translation (it's claimed to be the "world's first" online and offline speech-to-speech translator). Back in 2009, we were impressed with Jibbigo's functionality, and since then its developer - Mobile Technologies - has continued to improve the app through numerous updates. From what we understand, Jibbigo will be staying in the App Store for the time being, while Facebook considers means of incorporating the application's technology within the social network's ecosystem at-large. It'll be interesting to see what Zuckerberg et al. come up with, and whether speech-to-speech ultimately reaches the official Facebook iOS app. We'll keep you updated with further information as we receive it. In the meantime, see: Ashton Kutcher Deals Up Some Steve Jobs Wisdom At The Teen Choice Awards, Purported iPhone 5C Volume Keys Suggest Red, Yellow, Green And Blue Colors, and Audi's New iOS App Uses Augmented Reality To Make Car Repairs Less Complex.