Localization of IT products

Everything you wanted to know about the localization of IT products, but did not dare to ask

The market of information technology does not cease to grow and develop. Today, many young ambitious companies are working to create unique products and programs that can greatly facilitate our life in the near future.

Over the last 17 years, the number of companies in Ukraine engaged in the development of IT products has grown several times. Now, there are more than 1000 such companies in the country. According to some experts, by 2020 the total number of IT specialists in Ukraine will exceed 200 000 people.

This figure means only one thing — information technology will be increasingly introduced into daily life of every Ukrainian, in fact becoming a part of it. And the most pleasant thing is that we all will be able to use the services of this technology. The main thing is to make high-quality localization!

What is the localization of an IT product?

Many people believe that the localization of an IT product is just an ordinary translation of its interface and text files. But localization and translation are different things...

During localization, it is important not only to translate your software, video game or other information product, but also to properly adapt it to a certain market, so that each user can easily understand how to use this program.

Can you assemble a wardrobe from IKEA by reading the instruction in Swedish? Maybe, but you will spend an eternity assembling that wardrobe. It is much more convenient, when the entire assembly scheme is written in a language understandable to you. A few minutes, and your new piece of furniture is ready.

It is important to understand that not every translator can make the localization. When developing software or other information products, professional technical terminology is often used. To localize IT products, it is worthwhile to involve the whole group of qualified specialists: translators, editors, programmers, coders and web designers. They work on decoding terms and translating text data adapting the program so that ordinary users, like you and I, can understand it.

FOR EXAMPLE: In the mid-90s of the last century, every resident of our country dreamed of getting their own home computer, but not everyone could grasp its work. Thanks to the impeccable localization of Windows-95 and Windows-98 software, which helped to reveal all the principles of the system operation, today everyone can communicate with the computer on first-name terms. The localizers had to carefully process all the text data of the first Windows, because in 1997-1998 not everyone could boast of their flawless knowledge of English. Thanks to good localization, many residents of the CIS countries can call themselves active users of personal computers.

Why is localization necessary?

As mentioned above, information technology do not cease to develop, and every day there appear more and more companies engaged in the development of IT products. The market of applications and software is constantly growing, which means that in time these new IT-products will come to be in the possession of Ukrainian consumers. And they will need to be adapted to our region.

Someone may say that now most programs, technologies and video games come with English translation. But, as mentioned earlier, technical English is far from ordinary English. The words seem to be the same, and you can read the sentences, but it is rather difficult to understand the meaning of what you read. Therefore, such products should be adapted by people who have experience in both translations and technologies.

In addition, according to the EF English Proficiency Index, Ukraine ranks 41st among 72 countries for English proficiency. First this may seem a good result, but the 40th place is taken by Brazil, and the 42nd — by Chile. And in terms of English proficiency among the countries of Europe, our country honorably ranks 24th, leaving behind only Turkey and Azerbaijan. The general level of knowledge of the English language by Ukrainians is characterized as low.

And let alone IT products developed in China or Japan. Translation of their IT products into English is very often of extremely low quality, and to fully understand their technologies, it is necessary to look for a specialist in Oriental languages.

And do not forget about the developments of Ukrainian companies. Their products should also be adapted to the Western market.

What are the stages of localization?

We have already figured out that localization is a rather long and delicate process. In general, it can be divided into three main stages.

  • The first stage is the program analysis to identify problems that may arise during adaptation. During this stage, technical experts conduct testing of the correctness of the program use, and also check if there are no problems with the target language.
  • The second stage is translation and its proper adaptation. At his stage, professional editors and translators get to work. They create a single glossary of terms, so that each term is used in a single meaning, transfer the text of the user interface in a convenient format, translate all relevant text files, and customize translation for the target audience.
  • The third stage is testing and debugging the final product. At this stage, technical specialists and translators work together to remove all inconsistencies in their localization, correct all the shortcomings and provide their users with the final version of the product.
  • To pass this whole process you need a highly qualified and well-coordinated team.

    Do you want to promote your IT product to users? Pay attention to its proper localization

    Status Ko company has been engaged in translations for the last 20 years. During this time, the company’s specialists managed to work on translation of technical documentation, audio/video materials and localization of sites. Now, the company’s employees are also actively working on the localization of computer programs, applications and games. Among our customers there are such international brands as Samsung and Vodafone.

    Status Ko’s specialists have perfect command of more than 58 languages, which make up more than 3600 language pairs. They are well-versed in all the subtleties of adapting a text translation to a specific target audience.

    Advantages of cooperation with Status Ko:

    • Individual approach to each client.
    • Availability of professional technical equipment.
    • Willingness to work on solving your problem 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
    • We take into account all the subtleties of translation, so that the localized version of your product does not differ from the original.
    • Specialists speaking more than 60 languages (including Chinese and Japanese).
    • Willingness to take part in non-standard projects.
    • Willingness to help you in the implementation of your technical project in the Ukrainian or Western market.

    If you are looking for a coordinated team of true professionals, contact Status Ko. Our company is always ready to tell you “Yes!” where everyone else says “No!”.