Xerox Brings Translation Services to Multifunction Printers

By Pedro Hernandez | Posted April 07, 2016

Xerox may be known best for its copiers and enterprise document management services, but over the years, the office equipment maker has also increased the content-management possibilities for small and midsized businesses (SMBs).

Much of that effort centers around the company's ConnectKey-enabled multifunction printers (MFPs).

Rui Ferreira, senior director and general manager of Xerox global office solutions, defined ConnectKey as an extensibility platform that helps transform a Xerox multifunction printer into a productivity-enhancing fixture of the modern, mobile- and cloud-enabled workplace.

For example, ConnectKey apps let you add document printing and scanning to your Microsoft Office 365 workflows. Similarly, apps for DropBox, Google Drive, Box and OneDrive help businesses share content over their preferred cloud file storage service.

Xerox aims to create "the best gateway between paper and digital worlds," Ferreira told Small Business Computing. "We enabled a lot of cloud services right in our MFP," he continued. "Rather than expect our customers to scan to email, and then push that file, they can print and scan directly to those [cloud] repositories," keeping mobile workers in the loop.

While these capabilities come in handy, Xerox set its sights higher.

Xerox Brings Translation Services to Multifunction Printers

Breaking Language Barriers in Business

Recently, in partnership with optical character recognition (OCR) specialist , the company launched its new Xerox Easy Translation Service. ABBYY operates the service under license from Xerox.

Ferreira's team worked with ABBYY because the company "offered more than just the simple translation," he said. "The ability to take a paper document, translate it, and print it in a multifunction printer (MFP), involves other technologies."

On a Xerox MFP, the Easy Translation Service app lets you scan a document, and then translate it into more than 35 languages. The translated document follows the format of the original document—ABBYY's imaging expertise at work. You can output the document as a hardcopy or as a digital file.

For SMBs, the Xerox Easy Translation Service helps open the door to foreign markets, said ABBYY vice president Anton Voronov. Businesses seeking opportunities beyond their borders, or wanting to engage with various local ethnicities, can use the service to speak their language and "get a sense of what's going on in foreign markets," he said. "It lowers the barrier for companies" looking to get their goods and services into the hands of new, non-English speaking customers.

If you're nowhere near a Xerox MFP, you can access the translation services using iOS and Android apps or through a Web portal. Just snap an image on a smartphone or upload a document to the portal, and the service generates a translated copy.

Language Experts When You Need Them

Why not just copy-and-paste content into Google Translate or Bing Translator?

While these services may help you achieve basic understanding of a document's contents, the quality of the translation leaves a lot to be desired, said Voronov. Worse, they can prove utterly inadequate when you're hammering out the finer details of a business deal or tailoring product descriptions to local markets.

In addition to the instant machine translation offering, Xerox offers multiple levels of its Easy Translation Service.

The Express level offers machine translation with human post-editing for 10 cents a word. At 23 cents per word, the Professional level uses language professionals to translate contracts, proposals and other business documents. A dedicated editor then proofreads the translated results. Finally, the Expert plan enlists experts for business, scientific, or other highly-specialized content for 35 cents per word.

Local language expertise aside, the service employs strong safeguards to protect sensitive customer information. "Data gets translated, and then it's destroyed," assured Voronov. Additionally, human translators sign strict NDAs, and the company's internal translation workflow process redacts certain information, ensuring they "never get the full picture" of sensitive business dealings.

Xerox Easy Translation Service is available now. Check out this list of supported languages.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Small Business Computing. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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