Throughout the year, the SPY tech team has been able to play around with some of the best smartphones in the world. Even though the Google Pixel 7 series wasn’t a dramatic change over the previous generation, these phones are still worth checking out. In addition to the great price and feature set, Pixel smartphones also get the latest Android updates before other phones — as well as a few exclusive features.
Speaking of exclusives, there’s one little-known hidden feature in particular that has caused me to constantly go back to the Google Pixel 7 Pro. It’s the Live Translate function, which was first introduced with the Pixel 6 series. Quite simply, it allows Pixel users to instantly translate stuff on their phone natively, rather than using another translation app to do it for you.
You see, I play this real-time strategy game called Age of Origins and joined a band of players to form an alliance. The problem is that they all speak Spanish, so you can understand how difficult it is communicating outside of the game using WhatsApp. Instead of copying and pasting their messages into some translation app, I’ve leaned on Live Translate to do it all in-app — as well as having my messages automatically translated into Spanish.
Really, I can’t tell you how this one simple feature has been a godsend.
How To Enable Android’s Live Translate On Your Pixel Device
My case is just one example of how Live Translate is the most straightforward solution to translating messages. Previously, it required more work because it involved copying and pasting messages into a translation app, like Google Translate, and then getting the translated text back into the app I was using.
With Live Translate, it effectively cuts the time by doing all of the translating within the app — and yes, it works on all third-party apps. Although, I have to reiterate the fact that this feature is only exclusive to Pixel devices. If you own another kind of Android smartphone outside of a Pixel, you’re out of luck and have to stick with the old copy and paste routine.
1. Open the settings menu
2. Select the system
3. Click on Live Translate
4. Toggle on ‘Use Live Translate’ option
5. Choose the language you want to automatically translate
Once you’ve completed all of those steps, you’re ready to start using it. In my example of using WhatsApp, my Google Pixel 7 Pro automatically recognizes the Spanish text and translates it all in-app. There’s actually a small bubble icon over the app that displays the options for what language it should detect and translate.
What’s even more useful is that when you begin to type messages, it will also generate the translated text for you automatically. I cannot tell you how this has been incredibly useful because it streamlines the process I was used to with copying and pasting text into the Google Translate app.
Important Things To Know About Live Translate For Pixel Devices
Again, this is an exclusive feature that’s only available to Pixel devices like the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. While I hope for this to become a native Android feature, it’s one of the biggest reasons why I’ve continued to use a Pixel 7 Pro. That means you won’t find this feature on any other phone other than a Pixel.
Sometimes it takes a few seconds for Live Translate to kick in, so just be patient and perhaps switch back and forth between apps to get it to initiate. There are times, however, when it doesn’t translate at all despite relaunching the app. In these situations, I’ve found out that restarting the phone helps to establish Live Translate.
This feature is often overlooked and isn’t as widely known, unless you’re frequently in touch with people speaking other languages. Sure, it’s great that apps like Facebook and Twitter have their own native translation feature to negate the need to use a separate translating app, but not all apps have this option.
That’s why this hidden feature is one of those thoughtful things that gives Pixel smartphones a bit of value over the competition.