This is a re-post of an article that originally appeared on CMS Wire.
Remember the days when the biggest user interface (UI) challenge was how to get your website to work both in Internet Explorer and Netscape?
It’s a matter of opinion whether those were the good old days or bad old days, but one thing is clear. Now that mobile dominates online interactions, content creation has become a lot more concise and nuanced -- and the Internet of Things (IoT) is about to complicate matters. In the not-too-distant future, “do you speak my language” is going to mean more than it ever has before.
To gain a foothold in the IoT, savvy brands must think about global content in new ways, and understand that devices themselves are part of the localization equation. Otherwise, brands risk being the equivalent of stuck in the desktop era -- and we all know how that will turn out.
The Content Quandary
Over the past years, mobile has become the predominant form of online interaction around the world. One recent report shows that mobile platforms now account for 60 percent of all time spent with digital media. The Internet as we know it now fits into the palms of our hands. Facebook alone accounts for 18 percent of time spent on mobile devices.
Today’s users consider brief, consistent online interactions normal. Brands have been forced to shrink down and simplify almost everything about their presences in order to keep up, from websites to social interactions.
For marketers, that means branded communication must appear succinctly and effectively on every UI, whether large, small, written, audio or voice-activated. It must appear in the right language and with the right cultural associations. Otherwise consumers will abandon it in seconds flat.
Just as most businesses start to “get it” with regards to smartphone and tablet content, a new player is coming to town: the Internet of Things. IoT brings the everyday world online, essentially plugging your life into the internet with things like wearables, smart homes and connected cars. It closes the gap between online and offline life. Already, smartphones are hardly ever out of reach and wearables like the Apple Watch and Google Glass will make being connected a part of life like never before.
Here’s the challenge for brand marketers. If consumers tend to ditch poorly designed apps on the smartphone in the palms of their hands, imagine what they’ll do with bad apps they’re wearing on their faces.
IoT apps must perform flawlessly and instantly understand exactly what users want. As with smartphones and tablets today, if a device or a service falters, the connected user can instantly search for an alternative and have that up and running before their connected car drops them at the office.
The Real, Multilingual World
In the old days of desktop browsers, content seemed to imply something static. Its nature has changed. To remain competitive today, content has to dynamic, conforming itself to consumers' language and cultural needs.
The IoT takes that a step further by demanding that content be invisible, augmenting users' lives instead of becoming the focus. It requires a mixture of machine-to-machine and machine-to-human communication. For example, near-field communication (NFC) might alert a customer on his smartwatch about a discount on Makita drills, at which point he’ll pick one up, use his smartphone to compare it to other tools and then check out at the store’s point-of-sales tablet.
Making content work in the IoT is a challenge in English alone. But English is only the beginning for brands wanting to make a real dent in the marketplace. English speakers account for only one-third of the $50 trillion dollar global consumer spending power, according to Common Sense Advisory. To reach 98 percent of online users takes 48 languages. And 75 percent of internet users say they make important purchasing decisions only when information is presented in the language they speak.
Compounding the language challenge is the fact that every country has cultural norms that must be localized to -- including the way they use devices.
Maybe users in Japan are adopting all kinds of wearables while consumers in Tanzania are sticking with feature phones. Or one culture thinks yellow means death while to the other, it’s good luck. The importance of tracking and accommodating these cultural differences is growing. It's no wonder that translation budgets are growing, too, and that the bigger players in the web development market, like Drupal, are integrating translation capabilities directly rather than leaving them as add-ons.
Online All the Time
The IoT is poised to simplify many areas of life. The meaning of simplification, however, varies wildly by country. From language to naming conventions to aesthetics, users may not notice when it's done right, but they will definitely notice when it's not.
Companies seeking to maintain their competitive edge must find ways to fold this kind of knowledge into the development process. The trick is to identify the existing technological, language and cultural footprint before development or campaigns begin, and continue to iterate it within products and channels as you go, finding out what works best.
As the IoT gains traction in markets around the world, speaking the user’s language is going to mean more than ever before.
Language is social. It connects people and ideas. But what happens when it stops connecting, slows down, and goes offline? What happens when your global audience is left in the dark because your translations are stuck in someone’s inbox?
With the Translation Network, Lingotek makes your content accessible to your customers globally. By connecting your company with our technology and translators, we connect your ideas with the world. Lingotek makes going global possible.
Cloud Based Translation is Faster, Easier & More Efficient
Lingotek revolutionized the translation industry with its cloud-based networked translation technology. With Lingotek, you get an enterprise-grade, end-to-end solution that you control. Bring your translation workflow into the 21st century and get out from under the old-school, on-premise, traditional IT, and proxy architectures that slow you down and increase your costs with budget-busting implementation processes and ongoing maintenance.
Agile Software That Offers Scalability and Responsive IT
Our next-generation technology continuously delivers multilingual content and scalability to meet your increasing needs for more content, storage, and translation management. Lingotek’s cloud-based technology can extract large amounts of data and scale to any project size on the fly. With our agile software, Lingotek can be more responsive and can match your evolving requirements with fast IT.
Seamless Integration With Your Applications
Seamless integration with your enterprise applications and our translation management system lets you upload source content for translation, have it automatically translated, and download the translated content back into your original application.
Automated Workflows Put Your Translations on Autopilot
Put your translations on autopilot with customizable workflows that let you trigger actions throughout the project lifecycle. From notifying a reviewer when a translation is ready for review, to reporting project status to an external system, the Lingotek rules engine brings AI-like capabilities to your workflow.
Continuous, Real-Time Collaboration for Round-the-Clock Translation
With a vast network of translators working in our powerful cloud-based translation management system, you get continuous, round the clock translation and real-time collaboration.
Centralized File Management Gives You Control Over Your Content
Out-of-the-box integrations with popular CMS, CRM, marketing automation, knowledge bases, and social business software means your information resides in your system, giving you visibility, access, security, and control of your files and information.
Scalable File Storage to Match Your Growth
Our cloud-based Translation Network offers scalability that auto-scales to increased volume levels, without no additional charge for more file storage. It can scale as your usage grows.
Secure Your Information With Controlled Access to Files
Content stored in the Lingotek cloud is fully secured and kept private to your organization. Role-based authorization ensures that users only see information if they have been granted access by your project administrator.
Lingotek offers a wide range of translation solutions to its customers. Whether you are in the enterprise or federal space, or want our world-class translation services team to take care of your localization for you, Lingotek offers corporate and global translation solutions that are custom tailored for your needs.
Lingotek | The Translation Network is a cloud-based translation services provider, offering translation management software and professional linguistic services. We are the leader in collaborative translation technology with an innovative cloud translation management system (TMS) that uses computer-assisted translation (CAT) tools to facilitate faster, more efficient, language translation. Lingotek was the first to introduce cloud-based TMS technology to the United States in 2006 with the launch of a fully online, web-based, computer-assisted translation (CAT) system that pioneered the integration of translation memories (TM) with main-frame powered machine translation (MT). Our multilingual application program interfaces (API) and connectors pair with the industry’s top enterprise applications to automate and integrate the translation process. They include:
Customers can use their own language services providers (LSP) and linguists, or our global network of 5,000+ professional linguists. Lingotek is based in Lehi, Utah in the area known as Silicon Slopes.
Signal Peak Ventures is a Salt Lake-based venture capital firm that focuses on early-stage technology investments in the Intermountain region. The firm was established as Signal Peak in 2011 after the spin out of Canopy Ventures venture capital team and the acquisition of portfolio investments in ten other companies. The Signal Peak team has extensive experience in sourcing, executing, managing, and divesting venture capital stakes across the Intermountain region.
In-Q-Tel is a strategic, not-for-profit investment firm that works to identify, adapt, and deliver innovative technology solutions to support the mission of the U.S. Intelligence Community. Launched by the CIA in 1999 as a private, independent organization, In-Q-Tel's mission is to identify and partner with companies developing cutting-edge technologies that serve the national security interests of the United States. Working from an evolving strategic blueprint defining the Intelligence Community's critical technology needs, In-Q-Tel engages with entrepreneurs, growth companies, researchers, and investors to deliver technologies that provide superior capabilities for the CIA and the larger Intelligence Community.
Lingotek works with some of the largest, most innovative companies in the world, in a wide variety of industries and services including government, technology, finance, telecom, travel, and education. Our clients include departments in the U.S. Government and several large Fortune 500 companies. Here are some of the Customers that are trusting their translation processes with the Lingotek Translation Network.
We also work with a growing network of Partners--service providers, digital agencies, open sources technologies, and other strategically selected companies--to meet the unique translation requirements of our customers.
Comparably Best Company Leadership 2018
Comparably Best Company Managers 2018
Top 100 Companies in the Digital Content Industry - EContent 2017-2018
Comparably Best Company Leadership 2017
Comparably Best Company Culture 2017
Comparably Best Places to Work 2017
Comparable Best CEO - Rob Vandenberg 2017
Utah Business Book of Lists Top Telecom & Technology Software Developers 201
Utah Best in State Language Services 201
Silicon Review List of Inspiring 100 Companies 201
Top 100 Companies in the Digital Content Industry - EContent 201
Top 30 Drupal Contributor 201
Top Translation Services Company 2016 - PFin
Hot in Lehi Award Top Trending Companies - Owle
Top 100 Companies in the Digital Content Industry - EContent 201
Edison Award Finalist 201
CIO Microsoft 100 Solution Providers CIO Review 201
Edison Award Nominee 201
Gartner Cool Vendor of the Year 201
Oracle Gold Partner 201
Stevie Award Best New Product or Service of the Year SaaS Category 201
Most Innovative New Product Utah Valley Entrepreneur Forum 2006
Experience the Benefits of Networked Translation