Microsoft-owned Skype has cleared the way for anyone to use a new feature that translates video chats or instant messages in real time.
People no longer need to sign-up to use a preview version of Skype Translator, which handles spoken English, Spanish, Italian and Mandarin.
The number of languages translated jumps to 50 for written instant messages, with missives written in one language arriving converted into a preferred language, according to Skype.
"Microsoft is breaking down language barriers that have historically made it challenging for friends and families to connect,"
Skype Translator was made available as a free download at the Windows Store for computers or tablets running on the latest version of Microsoft's operating software.
Skype Translator is to translate as many languages as possible on relevant platforms, and to deliver the best speech translation experience to our more than 300 million connected Skype customers.
Google earlier this year debuted a feature for its Translate app that allows people to pair any two of 38 language options for translation, and also automatically translates when pointed at text items or signs.