According to COL Jarrett Mathews, acquisitions director for JATF, an operator will be able to talk to his counterpart in English, and an audible translation will come out of his phone. The counterpart replies in his language and the operator gets an audible English translation.
It can do this with military terms, slang, and accents. It can also tell the operator what part of the country the accent comes from, which might be a good way to catch infiltrators.
The first few prototypes have been deployed with 10th SFGA, which has responsibility for the Ukrainian Theater. A typical review is, “This device is off the f——g chain good.” The Task Force is fielding over two dozen upgraded prototypes to all Theater Special Ops Commands or TSOC’s, this Fall.
By the time it’s fully adopted the operator will be able to use it to read signs and graffiti.
The beauty part is that after using the app for two or three months the operator will have acquired enough of the language that much of the time he will not have to use it.
Programs already exist in major languages and more exotic ones are in development.
It’s expected that this gadget will be team equipment in a couple of years.