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translate languagesSometimes, in your travels around the Internet, you may encounter a website written in a language you do not understand. In fact, some of you might actually be translating this very article into your native tongue. If you frequently need to translate text you encounter on the web, than you have probably used Google Translate to get the job done, and in most instances that works perfectly.

Sometimes, you come against a situation where Google Translate is not the optimal tool for the job. You may need to fine-tune the translation, or you may be looking for a quicker way to do it. Well if you are a Chrome user, you need to check out Instant Translate. It is featured on our Best Chrome Extensions page, and I must say, it most certainly belongs there. It has all the features you need, and it comes in a slick, easy to use package that should please even the most fussy of translators.

Set Up

translate languages

Getting everything up and running with this extension is incredibly easy. All you need to do is head to its page on the Chrome Webstore and click “Add to Chrome.” No additional set up is required.

translate languages

Of course, you can fine-tune the experience by right clicking the extensions icon and going to options. In here, you can set a keyboard shortcut for quicker translation when you need it. You can also choose whether Instant Translate will appear in your right click context menu.


chrome translate language

The settings screen is also where you can choose whether you want the app to translate languages automatically after you finish typing into the box. You can also set whether the pop-out menu stores the last thing you translated if you need to go back to it later.

Using Instant Translate

chrome translate language

You can use Instant Translate in two ways. The first is translating text directly from a webpage by selecting text and using the keyboard shortcut or right clicking, and selecting “Instant Translate” from the context menu. This is perfect if you encounter a small section of a website that you need to translate to something else.

chrome translate language

The second way to use this extension is to click its icon next to the address bar and type in what you want to translate. You can manually choose the starting language or have it automatically detect it. Above the box for the translated text is the language you want translated to. The language chosen on this screen is also the language that will appear in the context menu for quick translations.

All translations can be read in text form and spoken aloud. This is great because some people understand and remember information better in writing while others prefer to hear it.

translate languages

Instant Translate also has a history feature. From here, you can go back and see previous translations. This can be quite helpful if you forgot something and do not remember exactly what it was. Alternatively, maybe you just do not feel like entering it again. Either way, it is a great feature that adds a lot of value to the extension.


This is a fantastic Chrome extension for anyone who needs to translate languages quickly and easily. It supports 66 different languages, so the one you are looking for is probably available. I definitely recommend all Chrome users check out this extension.  Or maybe you prefer something better, and you’d like to tell us about it?

Image Credit: Translate Button In Blue via Shutterstock

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    October 1, 2012 at 11:06 pm

    Why not just right and then click Translate this page? Chrome is my browser.

  2. Yudono Ra
    October 1, 2012 at 10:56 pm

    neat, already installed it :)

  3. GrrGrrr
    September 27, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Thanks. This looks easier than web based google translate

  4. KimChingLung
    September 27, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    A very handy tool indeed. Cheers.

  5. HLJonnalagadda
    September 27, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    Thanks a lot! Always needed something like this!

  6. Vishal Mishra
    September 27, 2012 at 9:06 am

    yeah i use this app/extension. no problem yet. smart and quick.

  7. macwitty
    September 27, 2012 at 4:22 am

    Will save me time - I use to copy paste into a window with google translate but this is much more handy!

    • Dave LeClair
      September 29, 2012 at 4:53 am

      I used to the do the same before I found this extension. It makes everything so much quicker!

  8. bonioloff
    September 27, 2012 at 3:06 am

    At first i see the title of this article, i think this is useless because as far as i know chrome already had feature to auto translate website.
    But after reading it i get that it is different, this one just translate the selected text not all the webpage..
    Good plugin..

  9. Richard Borkovec
    September 27, 2012 at 1:51 am

    This is great, thanks!