A Comprehensive Guide to Amazon Translate & Its Features

Pollion Team

Most people know about the various online translation tools, such as Google Translate and many others. But there’s one tool you may not be familiar with: Amazon Translate. 

In this article, we discuss what Amazon Translate is, how it can be used, and more. 

What is Amazon Translate, and How Does It Work? 

Amazon Translate is an online translation tool that uses neural machine learning to provide fast, high-quality translations. The tool uses deep learning models to deliver accurate translations that sound more natural than other online translation tools. The translation tool continuously learns to provide more accurate, natural-sounding translations.

Amazon Translate uses neural networks that are explicitly trained for language translation. This tool makes it possible to translate between a source and a target language. All that’s needed is to input the source text in UTF-8 format. The tool then translates the text and provides an output in UTF-8 format. AWS Translate also uses attention mechanisms to understand the text it’s translating. Attention mechanisms help the tool determine more accurate translations from the source to the target language. 

Moreover, AWS Translate also offers automatic language detection. When the text is input, the tool automatically detects the source language. 

Customizing translations is also easy with Amazon Translate. For instance, the settings can be set for the following: 

  • Do-not-translate tags
  • Custom terminology
  • Profanity
  • Formality
  • Parallel data

This advanced translation tool also allows localizing the content to the desired target audience. AWS Translate can also handle a large volume of text efficiently and quickly.  

What Languages Does Amazon Translate Support? 

AWS Translate currently supports 75 languages, including the following: 

  • Afrikaans
  • Arabic
  • Azerbaijani
  • Bosnian
  • Catalan
  • Czech
  • Dari
  • Farsi (Persian)
  • Hindi
  • Korean
  • And many others

The online translation tool also includes some language variants, such as Spanish. It’s possible to designate the type of Spanish needed, such as Mexican Spanish. However, the tool does not seem to offer British English or American English variants. 

How Can I Use This Service? 

Amazon Translate

Amazon Translate is part of Amazon Web Services (AWS), Amazon’s cloud computing service. An individual or a company that would like to use AWS Translate must first sign up for an AWS account. It is possible to sign up for a free account. The service offers a free tier, allowing customers to try out its services. (More on Amazon Translate pricing later in this article). 

The service can be used much like any other online translation tool. It’s possible to translate documents, words, and more. The site offers step-by-step instructions on how to use Amazon Translate, making it easy for anyone to use. 

Related Article : The Role of Multilingual SEO in Today’s Global Market

How Does Amazon Translate Differ from Other Machine Translation Services? 

One of the differences we found was that AWS Translate allows users to define terms and names. This can be important for documents that contain the names of organizations, domain names, industry-specific terminology, and more. 

Otherwise, it’s necessary to hire professional translators to edit these documents, which can be expensive. Moreover, Amazon Translate can provide translations faster, too. 

What are the Typical Use Cases for Amazon Translate? 

Amazon Translate is a beneficial tool for any individual or organization with an AWS account and access to the services offered through the cloud service. The typical use cases for AWS Translate include the following: 

  • Translate company content (meeting minutes, tech reports, knowledge-based reports, and more)
  • Translate interpersonal communications (e-mail, in-game chat, customer service chat, etc.)
  • Create subtitles and live captions
  • Use with Amazon Polly to speak translated content
  • Translate documents stored in Amazon S3 and text stored in Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Aurora, and Amazon Redshift
  • Integrate with workflows with AWS Glue or AWS Lambda

How Secure is Amazon Translate for Sensitive or Confidential Information?

How Secure is Amazon Translate for Sensitive or Confidential Information?

AWS says that Amazon Translate uses SSL encryption between your webpage and applications. It goes on to say that content input to the tool is encrypted and stored at rest in the AWS Region where the service is used. 

In addition, administrators can control who has access to AWS Translate to ensure that all sensitive, confidential information is protected. 

However, the service recommends not inputting sensitive data into the translation tool, such as customer numbers, names, and other personally identifiable information. 

The Main Points About Amazon Translate:

1. Features & Capabilities

Amazon Translate offers the following features and capabilities: 

  • Real-time translation: AWS Translate delivers on-demand translations of content for instant translations. 
  • Batch translation: the translation tool also does batch translations, which is helpful for large amounts of text that must be translated quickly. 
  • Text & document translation capabilities: Amazon Translate supports real-time document translation of text, HTML, and .docx files.
2. Pricing Model
  • Cost per million characters: AWS Translate charges $15 per million characters for its paid version or 2 million characters per month free for 12 months. 
  • Additional costs for extra features: the translation tool charges $30 per million characters for real-time document translation of .docx files (there’s no free tier for this service), and $60 per million characters for active custom translation (500,000 characters per month free for 2 months). 
3. Quality & Accuracy
  • Comparison with human translation: Amazon Translate is an excellent tool for when a fast translation is needed. However, the tool can’t compare to human translation services for accuracy and quality. Human translators offer higher-quality and more accurate translations than AWS Translate. 
  • Contextual translation and its limitations: when it comes to contextual translation, AWS Translate is not always able to accurately translate idioms or cultural nuances found within the text. 
4. Integration Options

APIs for developers: Amazon Translate offers APIs in several different programming languages, including the following: 

  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • PHP
  • .NET
  • Ruby
  • Python
  • How it can integrate into existing software systems or platforms: the translation tool can be integrated with existing software systems and platforms through one of the programming languages listed above. Plus, AWS Translate can be integrated with other AWS tools. 


Amazon Translate is an online translation tool that uses neural machine learning to create more accurate translations within moments. The tool can handle large amounts of text quickly and accurately. It can also automate the translation process, saving an individual or organization time and money. 

While AWS Translate is a good translation tool, it doesn’t always offer the same accuracy or quality as human translators. Individuals and organizations that must ensure their text is high-quality, accurate, and localized to the target audience are better off hiring a professional translation agency. 

Why not consider trying Amazon Translate today for your specific translation needs? However, if your text is complex, you may want to consult a professional translation agency instead. They are language experts who can offer a bespoke translation solution for your project. 

Tags: Amazon Translate