Language is the most common barrier to communicating abroad, and can be a real headache for travellers. You might try to get by with simple words or phrases you’ve picked up from books, or sometimes you’ll resort to using Google translate to facilitate a conversation.
In the past, we’ve seen a smattering of palm-held electronic translators like this that never really took off, and apps that offer speech-to-text translations but require network connection (something that’s not always available abroad).
Now there’s Pilot – an in-ear device, that wirelessly connects with a smartphone app, translating both sides of your conversations in real-time. Or at least there’s an Indiegogo campaign for the development of the technology.
There has been a lots of hype around Pilot since its launch in May, and the campaign has raised almost $2 million. But there have also been a number of questions raised around the product, whether it’s actually achievable, and how realistic their showcase video is.
Andrew Ochea, CEO and founder of Waverly Labs (the start up behind Pilot) was recently interviewed by Forbes leaving them to proclaim “I just spoke with Pilot and I don’t know if it is real”.
Nonetheless, this would be a truly remarkable gadget – if it can be achieved – and would no doubt become many travellers’ best friend. We’ll just have to wait and see if Waverly Labs can actually pull it off. We sincerely hope they do…