How do you most often use translation web sites? graph of japanese statisticsThis recent look by Media Interactive (iResearch), reported on by japan.internet.com, into translation web sites found, surprisingly to me, that Google Translate was nowhere to be seen.

Demographics

Over the 7th and 8th of June 2010 1,000 internet users who had used translation web sites completed a survey. 57.1% of the sample were male, 1.1% were in their teens, 18.4% in their twenties, 29.6% in their thirties, 28.5% in their forties, 14.8% in their fifties, and 7.6% in their sixties.

Just to test out the sites, in Q1 I’ve fed in the first sentence the article, “ポータルサイトを中心に各社が翻訳サービスを提供しているが、ユーザーの利用状況はどうだろうか。”, which I would manually translate as “Focused around portal sites, various companies offer translation services, but how do users use them?” For the Other category, I’ll use Google Translate, since I mentioned its omission above. Also note that Yahoo! use Babelfish on their English site, which gives this translation “Focusing on the portal sight each company offers translation service, but will utilization circumstance of the user how probably be?”, which is probably the worst of the lot, especially as it doesn’t seem to be aware of the common phrase “portal site”!

Research results

Q1: Which translation web sites have you used? (Sample size=1,000, multiple answer)

  Sample translation Percentage
Yahoo! Translate The companies offer translation service mainly on portal site, but how will about the use situation of the user? 69.8%
Excite Translate How about user’s use state though each company is offering the translation service around the portal site? 54.9%
Infoseek Translate The companies provide translation service mainly on portal site, but how will about the use situation of the user? 19.9%
@nifty Translate How about user’s use state though each company is offering the translation service around the portal site? 10.2%
livedoor Translate Although each company offers translation service centering on a portal site, how is a user’s use situation? 7.3%
OCN Translation Service Each company offers translation service centering on a portal site, but how is the user’s use conditions? 7.0%
So-net Translate The companies offer translation service mainly on portal site, but how will about the use situation of the user? 4.2%
Fresh eye Translate Although each company provides translation service centering on a portal site, how is a user’s use situation? 1.5%
Other (Google Translate, etc) Has been providing translation services companies around the portal, user activity is like? 8.1%

Q2: How do you most often use translation web sites? (Sample size=1,000)

From Japanese to foreign language 20.7%
From foreign language to Japanese 52.5%
Both about the same 26.2%
Don’t know, don’t remember 0.6%

Q3: When you have a long sentence to translate, how do you enter it into the web site? (Sample size=1,000)

Translate long sentences as they are 53.1%
Split into clauses and translate individually 37.4%
Translate a word or two at a time 9.5%

When asked if they thought the translations were accurate, just 37.1% of the sentence translators felt so, then 47.3% of the clause translators and 67.4% of the single word translators. As you can see from the example in Q1, livedoor/Fresh eye is the best, although if the “will” between “how about” for Infoseek/So-net was not there I’d rate it higher.


1 Comment

Google rules for translation in Japan | 世論 What Japan Thinks · June 27, 2011 at 23:51

[…] This recent survey from goo Research, reported on by japan.internet.com, into online automatic translation services found Google on top in both usage and satisfaction, a quite amazing change from just a year ago when Google was nowhere to be seen. […]

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