One of the more difficult parts of my trip to Russia last year was the language barrier. Aside from having to navigate a whole new alphabet, it was difficult at times to find anyone that understood English. I frequently found myself pointing and gesturing or making use of a few phrases of poorly pronounced Russian I had picked up from my guidebook. That’s why I was excited to hear about Steape, a Dutch company that produces a line of language dictionaries and phrasebooks you can download to your mobile phone.
According to the Steape website, the company offers two main products, Steape Travel and Steape Mini Speaking Dictionary. Steape Travel offers a catalog of around 100 commonly used travel phrases, whereas the Mini Speaking Dictionary offers a database of around 500 traveler-friendly words. Both can be purchased on the Steape site for only $4 each. If you purchase Steape Travel or Mini Speaking Dictionary, you’ll also get Steape Knowledge as a free bonus, which has basic vocabulary like numbers and days of the week. The interface for each application works basically the same way – you search for a word or phrase you want to use and press the action key to have it pronounced using your phone’s speaker.
Currently, the applications are supported on more than 160 phone models and in 17 different languages. Check out the site to verify compatibility for your particular phone model and language needs. For only $4, Steape seems to have a cheap and highly useful application on their hands. Then again, as Jamie suggested recently in her post, there are “alternative” methods to help you learn foreign language phrases for your next trip.
[Via: Xellular Identity]