Hyatt is Participating in Google Assistant’s Interpreter Mode Pilot


Photo Credit: Google

Last week, Hyatt announced a partnership with Google to pilot the new Interpreter Mode feature for Google Assistant. The Google Assistant Interpreter Mode was announced at CES 2019. The feature turns Google Assistant into a language translator for two people, able to conduct translations for 27 languages. The pilot began last week on Google Assistant-enabled smart displays and smart speakers at participating Hyatt hotels. The press release states:

“At participating Hyatt Hotels, Interpreter Mode will enable guest and colleagues that speak different languages to communication via spoken and written translations of their own languages on a Google Home Hub.” Hotel guests will be able to identify their language on a Google Home Hub screen, allowing hotel colleagues to then activate Interpreter Mode by saying, “Hey Google, be my [language] interpreter.”

A demonstration of the feature at CES included a German “tourist” approaching a concierge at Caesar’s Palace to inquire about show tickets. The concierge then used a voice command to prompt a Google Home Hub to enter into German interpreter mode. The guest and concierge then used Google Assistant to hold a conversation, ending with the guest purchasing his tickets. Here is a list of the 27 languages supported by Interpreter Mode:

    • Arabic
    • Chinese (Mandarin)
    • Czech
    • Danish
    • Dutch
    • English
    • Finnish
    • French
    • German
    • Greek
    • Hindi
    • Hungarian
    • Indonesian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Slovak
  • Spanish
  • Thai
  • Turkish
  • Ukranian
  • Vietnamese

Google Has a History with Voice Translation

Google’s development of this feature is not surprising, as it already offers near-instantaneous translations with Google Translate. Bilingual capabilities have also been a feature of Google Assistant since September 2018. The Pixel Buds initial launch also included a near real-time translation feature for 40 languages with only the tap of a button, and that was introduced back in 2017. Now, users can find the real-time translation feature on all Google Assistant enabled headphones.

Hyatt and Voice Assistants

VentureBeat reported in the Summer of 2017 that Hyatt was considering the use of voice assistants in their rooms. At the time, Hyatt was even considering the Virtual Concierge Service, an innovative use case Voicebot covered after its win at the VRMA Battleground Conference in the fall. Hyatt Regency Lake Washington general manager Rusty Middleton and his staff began experimenting with the inclusion of voice assistants independent of Hyatt Hotel’s exploration of adding smart speakers in 2017. At the time he said, “I don’t know what percentage of the population have Alexas, but I know from customer feedback they want some of the same services and experiences they have at home during a hotel stay. That’s why we’re considering it.”

For hotels, adding voice assistant technology through smart speakers is all about improving the quality of a guest’s stay. Understanding their needs, no matter what language they speak is a good tool to have to drive a positive guest experience. Irby Morvant, General Manager of the Hyatt Regency San Francisco where the pilot has already begun commented, “With the possibilities presented in Interpreter Mode, we strengthen our commitment to provide a seamless guest experience and create a welcoming and inclusive environment for colleagues.”

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