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8 Common mistakes of software localization and how to avoid it?

Software Localization

If we talk about software localization many layman may have a question “What is Software localization?” “Where it is used?”

What exactly software localization is?

Software localization means translation of any software interface into another language that includes the messages in the software as well.

It also includes adaptation of some formats like measures, dates and currency.

Though by name it sounds very easy, but it is a complex process and needs 100% accuracy when you are working on it.

So the basic concept is a translation of a software interface, but it is not limited to that, Software localization is more than the translation of a product’s user interface.

Many companies localize their software to get the global acceptance to their software. By which their product doesn’t limits to any region.

Where Software localization is used?

Software localization also referred as “Internationalization” or i18n is a part of many businesses and it is the need of the current market to explore their products globally and make them multicultural.

It is a process of developing software easily translated into multiple languages.

For a company that wants to widen its market spectrum, software localization is what the major attribution done. So, Software localization is in every industry now days wherever it is required to give the product global exposure.

Now suppose if you have developed one software or application which only knows, works or communicate the user into English then this would limit the software’s use as other non-English people may not be able to use it just because of this limitation.

So here comes the important role of software localization, which makes your product/software global by making it software localized.

This is done while writing the code itself when you are developing the software. The code should be multi-language support.

There is a huge growth of localization service in India since the country is known as outsourcing land. Companies, globally look forward to connecting with the leading software localization service in India, to get the best result at the end.

There are some important points which are always kept in mind while software localization Planning, Glossary, Unicode, Text Expansion, Software localization Testing.

These are the major point which can be elaborated as a key point for a smooth software localization process. And to get the end result as per user requirement is very important for the software localization.

So, now as we have seen what is software localization is. There are always some rules one should follow to avoid software localization mistakes.

These mistakes can lead trouble to the company in a long race, which can lead to bringing down the stronghold of the company in the market.

Let us check some of the software localization mistakes commonly done and how to avoid:

  1. Embedding Text into the code directly

Embedding Text into the code directly

Image Source: Ecatholic

If you are doing this then you are actually slowing down the software localization process and which may affect the costing of the whole project as well.

This method confuses the translator that which content should be translated and which is not, which affects the final result and you need to do the editing in the final interface which increases the cost effectiveness of the localization.

  1. Using Pixel-Based Layout

    Using Pixel Based Layout

    image Source: CodeProject

If you are translating the content from English to any other language, then definitely the same sentence in both the language may not require the same space.

And if you are preparing for this while translating, you may need to do editing of the interface after translation.

So always give a string room to shrink or to expand.

  1. Corrupted characters/Lack of Unicode Support

Corrupted characters OR Lack of Unicode Support

Image Source: Ota

When you are dealing with special characters while translating the Unicode proper support is always necessary and one should work on this properly to avoid the corrupted characters after translation.

Many software developers recommend the UTF-8 for the special character translation. And if you are dealing with Asian languages, then UTF-16 is recommended.

  1. Vertical Writing

Vertical Writing


Image Source: Codrops

Though these are the very less frequent case if you are translating for this type of specific languages then you should keep in mind about this.

So you have to work on the vertical writing languages and translate accordingly.

  1. Ambiguity due to lack of context

Ambiguity due to lack of context

Image Source: ThoughtCo

It becomes hard for the translator to analyze the intention/meaning of the word when there is ambiguity in a sentence or for a word.

A translator may get confused about the use of a specific word and it becomes an obstacle while translating the content in software localization.

It is advisable that words which may create ambiguity should be avoided.

  1. Image and Text Combination

It is very difficult when an image is used with a text on it. The translator has to go through a long process to deal with such cases.

If you have used only images to explain something then it becomes very easy and cost effective for translation. But this is not the case with Image and text combination.

It requires other tools to separate the text from the image and work accordingly which affects the cost of localization.

  1. Localization Test delay

It becomes very difficult if someone is not doing the testing of localization on each and every phase.

As if you face any issues after half the process completed and then if you have to make some changes just because of avoiding the testing then it is waste of time and efforts.

And it may also increase the costing of the project.

  1. Avoiding Numbers/Unites/Dates and time in localization

It is a very big mistake if you are assuming that numbers, units, time and dates don’t need localization. So, each and every content of the software must be localized by keeping locale in mind.

8 Common mistakes of software localization and how to avoid it (infographics)

How to avoid software localization mistakes?

Leading software localization service in India ensures that every product designed for translation gives out an accurate result. To improve the quality of the software localization, here are few things to consider:

  • Software with Pseudo Translation:

In pseudo-translation, the software is tested to check how the translated content works in the given layout.

The software designer and translator will run the test on the system to check the translation is perfect or not. If there is an issue, then it will be fixed before releasing it.

  • Training the Translator:

There are situations when the translator won’t translate the jargon, slang, or cultural references accurately, affecting the entire sentences, or meaning.

This is similar to the software localization which may not translate sentences properly that could change the entire meaning.

So it becomes important to train the translator perfectly to design the software in the right manner.

Software Localization Company in Mumbai like Shakti Enterprise has trained it’s personally to give an accurate result.

  • Creating a Comprehensive Glossary:

The glossary is a database of terminology associated with business and products. When the software localization is developed, the comprehensive glossary is created, so that the translator working on the project gets help in framing the document or website content accurately.

Software localization in today’s competitive business is a necessity helping companies to reach out the wider audience. This is when companies like Shakti Enterprise come to the role.

Shakti Enterprise is one of the leading software localization services in Mumbai backed with state-of-the-art tools and proficient translators helping to build localized software for companies.

From Indian to global companies, Shakti Enterprise offers services to maintain a long term business relationship.

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