Waverly Labs is in the process of producing ‘Pilot’, a wearable piece of technology that will improve communication by translating languages for the user. What if you only speak English but you want to talk to someone who only speaks Italian? Pilot aims to knock down those language barriers.
Pilot seems like something out of a sci-fi film, which is how most good technology seems at first. This tech functions similarly to the wriggly Babel fish from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: you simply insert the Pilot earpiece and let it do its thing. Using advanced speech recognition software, it identifies which language your conversation partner is using and translates their words into a language you can understand. According to the company’s blog, this process only takes a few seconds.
The current version of Pilot has some limitations that Waverly Labs is hoping to address in the future. For the time being, both conversation partners will need to have a Pilot or Pilot app on their phone equipped in order to understand each other. Waverly Labs hopes to develop a version of Pilot that will automatically translate anything it hears. Additionally, machine translation is imperfect and Pilot will occasionally make mistakes; the good news is that Pilot’s software is capable of learning, so the more people use it, the more accurate the translation will get.
Currently Pilot is available for pre-order. It is expected to retail for $250-300.