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Apple unveils multilingual features in iOS 18

A screenshot of an iPhone displaying a group chat in the Messages app. The conversation is titled "Silly Geese" and participants discuss their weekend plans. One user mentions flying to their sister's place to see babies. Others respond with no specific plans and express interest in the initial plan. A user then asks a quick question followed by a selection of emoji options, including a heart, thumbs up, thumbs down, laughing face, exclamation marks, question mark, and a piece of cake. The conversation humorously discusses the acceptability of having cake for breakfast, with participants agreeing that it's fine.

Last month, Apple introduced iOS 18 at its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC). Following the announcement, two developer beta versions have been released, showcasing significant enhancements in multilingual support across various functionalities like the lock screen, Siri, keyboard, and search.

One of the standout features is the ability to customize the lock screen to display time using numerals from 12 different languages, including Arabic, Devanagari, Telugu, and more. The keyboard has also received substantial updates, such as trilingual predictive typing support. This feature allows users to type in one language and receive word suggestions in three languages simultaneously without switching inputs. Supported languages for this feature include English, Bangla, Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi, Punjabi, Tamil, and Telugu.

In the Messages app, the keyboard now remembers the last language used in each thread, streamlining communication in multiple languages. Additionally, there's a new multiscript keyboard for Korean and English.

iOS 18 improves language search capabilities, allowing users to find different spellings of similar-sounding words. This feature supports Assamese, Bangla, Devanagari, and Gujarati.

Other language-related enhancements in iOS 18 include:

- Live voicemail transcription in Indian English

- Hindi support in the Translate app

- The addition of Arabic to the live text feature

- New grammar engines for Hindi and Korean

- Contact poster creation using Indian languages and numerals

The public release of iOS 18 is scheduled for this fall. While the features are exciting, it's worth noting that current beta versions may contain bugs and might not be ideal for use on primary devices.

These updates from WWDC 2024 highlight Apple's ongoing commitment to enhancing the user experience through improved multilingual capabilities. Source: TechCrunch


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