How to Choose the Best Machine Translation Software in 2024

Guildhawk | May 14, 2024 10:13:23 AM

With various machine translation software providers available in the market, it can be difficult to choose which is the best option for you. The key question you should ask is ‘what do we need from a machine translation tool to meet our business goals?'.

This could be real-time automated translation for training materials and safety reports, translating ad-hoc compliance documents that are confidential, or localising millions of words and charts in operational or maintenance manuals.

According to a report by Common Sense Advisory, over 76% of online consumers prefer to buy products with information in their native language. Small wonder then that the language services industry was expected to reach almost US$52bn in 2020 and continue to grow.

Remarkably, only around 3% of this was estimated to be machine translation. The arrival of Generative AI will doubtless see machine translations increasing but the role of human linguists – both as creators of new content and trainers of AI – seems here to stay for a while.

There are lots of exciting translation technologies on the market from historic stalwarts to disruptive new kids on the block. We take a look at four of the most powerful machine translation software options currently available to help you make an informed decision.

What’s the best machine translation software?

Google Translate

Google Translate is the most well-known in the market and is a good tool for basic translations and getting a quick understanding of foreign content. Google Translate is a prime example of automated translations, which can be useful for quick and basic translations but may lack the depth needed for more complex content.

However, for legal, medical or confidential documents, or situations requiring cultural nuance, a professional translator might be a better option.

In practice, how accurate is Google Translate?


  • Free and Easy to Use: Google Translate is completely free and accessible through a user-friendly web interface and mobile app.
  • Multiple Languages: It supports an extensive range of languages, making it a versatile tool for basic communication across many cultures.
  • Improving Over Time: The Google algorithm learns from data submitted by users which improves the results generated.


  • Privacy Concerns: Since translations are stored by Google, this can create data privacy concerns when translating sensitive or confidential information.
  • Challenges with Accuracy and Context: Google Translate faces difficulties in accurately capturing complex sentence structures, idioms, and nuances. It also lacks contextual understanding which can result in misinterpretations, particularly in instances involving cultural references or technical language specific to an industry.
  • Machine Only: Google does not offer human translation services.

Google Translate


GAI is known for its accuracy and quality resulting in reduced editing time for translations. With its exclusive Expert-in-the-Loop (EITL) service, GAI offers the unique benefit of translation review by an industry certified professional.


  • Ironclad Security: GAI is a Private AI platform and adheres to ISO:27001 certified security measures, ensuring sensitive information is never shared.
  • Translation Memories: Verified translation datasets and translation memory train the AI engine to elevate the quality of future machine-translated content.
  • Expert-in-the-Loop: GAI users can translate documents and have them verified by a human either via a secure platform or integrated into systems through an API.


  • Free Trial Only: GAI is a paid subscription service. It does offer a free trial period with no obligation to buy.
  • Business Focused: GAI is mainly focused on business users which may be seen as a limitation to a general consumer.
  • Creating New Datasets: Datasets can be created to train the GAI engine for a specific business or sector though it may take time to clean, label and verify data to guarantee the quality is suitable to train AI.

GAI AI Translation

Deepl Translator

DeepL is an excellent choice if you prioritise natural-sounding translations in the target language. DeepL leverages neural machine translation (NMT) technology to provide highly accurate and natural-sounding translations. It currently supports 32 languages. The limited language support and potentially high cost for increased use might be drawbacks for regular users.


  • Secure and Private: Data entered into DeepL is secure and not shared with 3rd parties, providing assurance when processing sensitive information.
  • High Accuracy: DeepL uses multiple, high-quality datasets and is known for its translation quality, often exceeding other services like ChatGPT.
  • User-Friendly Interface: DeepL has a clean and simple interface that's easy to navigate for users of all technical backgrounds.


  • Limited Languages: DeepL is currently focussed on translating major European and Asian languages so it might not be suitable for more niche languages.
  • Cost: Free and entry level options are competitively priced. However, upgraded plans with features like increased translation volume and glossaries can be expensive for some users.
  • Machine Translation Only: DeepL does not offer an automated EITL feature to verify machine translation results. This can result in extra costs for human translation, post-editing, and verification.



Launched in 2022, ChatGPT has become a worldwide phenomenon. While ChatGPT can be a convenient and versatile option for machine translation software, it's important to consider its limitations and potential drawbacks when deciding whether to use it for translation tasks.

Languages with highly complex and inflected grammatical structures, like Basque or certain Slavic languages, may present difficulties in maintaining accuracy and nuance.


  • Backed by Microsoft: ChatGPT is provided by OpenAI which is backed by substantial investment from Microsoft and Elon Musk giving it the financial power to continuously innovate.
  • Natural Language Understanding: ChatGPT excels at understanding context and nuance in languages, especially for casual or conversational text.
  • Availability: ChatGPT can be easily accessed through various platforms and integrated into different applications, making it readily available for translation tasks.


  • Accuracy: While ChatGPT can produce reasonably accurate translations, it will struggle with technical, domain specific content when industry datasets have not been made available to OpenAI to train the engine.
  • Privacy Concerns: Privacy concerns may arise if sensitive, commercial or confidential information is prohibited from being shared with third-party services like OpenAI.
  • Copyright Infringement Risk: The New York Times and other organisations are in legal dispute with OpenAI over allegations that ChatGPT has used content in a way that breaches copyright laws.

Why Post-editing Machine Translated Content is Highly Important

Post-editing is critical in refining machine translated texts to ensure they are accurate, contextually relevant, and culturally suitable. Speech translation, especially in machine translation cloud services, plays a vital role in the translation process by enabling instant translation of conversations and supporting live conversation features.

Despite advances in machine translation technology, human verification is necessary to address nuances, cultural contexts, and idiomatic expressions that machines must be trained to learn.

Human verification is a unique feature that sets GAI apart from the competition. GAI’s Expert-in-the-Loop (EITL) allows translations to be reviewed by trusted, certified professionals at the touch of a button.

In Conclusion

Selecting the right machine translation software in 2024 is a strategic decision that hinges on your specific business needs.

While tools like Google Translate and DeepL offer many advantages, they may fall short in areas like understanding industry-specific terms, and automating access to certified humans. ChatGPT brings conversational finesse but may not be ideal for your confidential data or content that you want to protect from copyright infringement.

GAI is a new technology powered by Generative AI that introduces a traditional trusted component into the loop, the human expert.

Take a free, no obligation trial of GAI and judge for yourself what gives you the best results now, and for the future.

* All data accurate at date of publish