Why was Pocketalk created and who developed it?
I’m Nori Matsuda, CEO of Sourcenext®, the makers of Pocketalk™. We created Pocketalk to make it easy to have a conversation with someone who speaks a different language. I believe that the simple act of conversation can bring people closer together, and open a world of possibilities for society as a whole.
Sourcenext (a public company traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, 4344:JP) is the largest distributor and creator of software, hardware, and IoT products in Japan. Founded in 1996, Sourcenext specializes in helping companies like Rosetta Stone, Dropbox, and Evernote, sell their software products and apps to a market of millions. And now with the launch of Pocketalk, Sourcenext is bringing its own products to the world. Through its expertise in user experience, marketing, and customer support, Sourcenext has earned the trust and respect of partners, retailers, and consumers around the world. Visit https://us.sourcenext.com/ for more information.
What is Pocketalk?
Pocketalk™ is the portable, AI-powered instant voice translation device that breaks down language barriers and bridges the gap between different spoken languages. It is one single device supporting 74 languages and more coming.
What are the ways people use Pocketalk?
Because it translates long sentences, Pocketalk is great for travelling and business—it’s the easy way to have a conversation with someone who speaks a different language. We also hear of people using Pocketalk for language learning.
What comes in the Pocketalk product box?
The box includes the Pocketalk device, a USB Type-C charger cable, and the User Guide.
How does Pocketalk work?
Pocketalk needs connection to the internet. Pocketalk accesses online translation engines to provide the most accurate translations possible. These engines continue to get more accurate all the time.
You have various options to connect:
- Carrier Coverage: Connecting to carrier provider’s networks will provide you a broader coverage range with no hassles of continually entering WiFi passwords.
- WiFi or personal hotspot: You can also connect to WiFi or a personal hotspot on your phone.
The easiest solution is to buy our “built-in mobile data” version of Pocketalk. This comes with 2 years of unlimited data included just for an additional $50 up-front. No monthly fees. Turn on the device and travel in 109 countries / regions (as of Nov. 2018). Once your initial 2 years of data are up, you will have the option to renew; enter a SIM card of your own; connect via personal hotspot, or connect via WiFi.
If you buy the “add your own mobile data” version, then you can add a SIM card for carrier coverage, or connect via WiFi or personal hotspot. We recommend buying the “Pocketalk Global SIM Card from Soracom” which is sold on our website because it’s the only SIM card supported by us.
How do I access the 74 languages?
All 74 languages are on the device once connected to the internet!
One device. 74 languages. Bi-directional conversations.
There is no need to download individual language files at all.
How do I operate Pocketalk?
Pocketalk is very easy to use once you have the hang of it. On the Home screen, just choose your two languages (tap on language name to get a list of other languages to choose from). Once your two languages are chosen, then just use the two “talk buttons” or physical buttons just below. One person uses the button under their language and the other person uses the button under their language.
To operate, press and hold the button the entire time you are speaking. When finished, let go of the button and Pocketalk will provide the translation. Be sure to initially wait for the Pocketalk beep sound before speaking.
Can I use Pocketalk offline?
No. An internet connection is required using WiFi, mobile data, or a personal hotspot. That’s because Pocketalk relies on robust language engines and cutting-edge cloud technologies to carry out its highly accurate translations.
Do I need to purchase a separate SIM card if my Pocketalk comes with “built-in mobile data”?
No. The “built-in mobile data” version of Pocketalk comes with a SIM card already built-in. It’s ready to work out of the box. Simply turn on Pocketalk, and the mobile data will automatically connect to the internet.
How many countries does the “Pocketalk Global SIM Card by Soracom” work in?
The Pocketalk Global SIM Card by Soracom currently works in 105 countries (as of September 2018). Full list found at https://www.pocketalk.net/countries/.
This of course does not mean that you will get service everywhere within the country. It just means that it is supported in areas of the country. As you are aware, carrier service cannot be found in all places.
What if my mobile data connection is poor?
We have all encountered mobile data connections being poor in certain areas. If this happens, we encourage looking for a local WiFi to connect to or connecting to a personal hotspot on your phone. Sometimes WiFi can offer a stronger and faster connection than a mobile data connection through a carrier.
How many languages does Pocketalk support and how are they counted?
Pocketalk currently supports 74 languages with more being added. Full language list can be found at https://www.pocketalk.net/languages/.
We count a supported language as a language that has the ability for voice input into Pocketalk.
For example, although Samoan is listed as a language in device (for translated text output only), we do not count this as one of our 74 supported languages because Pocketalk does not support Samoan language voice input.
What do you mean by Pocketalk being a smart device?
Pocketalk accesses various online translation engines to provide the most accurate translations. These engines continue to have Artificial Intelligence run in the background to further improve accuracy of speech recognition and translations. Using Pocketalk next time could provide an even more accurate experience.
Pocketalk does not learn your specific voice or patterns of speech.
What type of warranty is provided?
Full details on warranty can be found at https://www.pocketalk.net/warranty-guarantee/.
Do you have any accessories for Pocketalk?
Yes, we do have accessories available from our eShop – such as:
- Screen protector
- Pouch – to hold your Pocketalk and accessories
- Protective Case
How long does the battery last?
The battery last for a full 7 hours of talking. Or if put into sleep mode with a full battery, it will last for 10 days!
Can I buy Pocketalk for members of my team or company?
Our end-user license agreement (EULA) limits the use of one Pocketalk per company.
If you would like to use more than one Pocketalk for your business, please contact us at email@example.com to learn more.
What if some transcriptions or translations are incorrect?
Pocketalk provides the most accurate translations possible because it accesses the latest translation engine every time it’s used. But, we do realize there are times when transcriptions may not be fully accurate.
There is quite a bit of work done each time Pocketalk is used. First, your voice audio is transcribed into text, then the text is translated into another language, then that is again changed into an audio format.
If you feel that a translation did not go through correct, please first check to see if Pocketalk heard what you said correctly by checking your language transcription on the device.
- If the transcription is incorrect, please try re-saying the phrase/sentence.
- If Pocketalk did transcribe properly, maybe try rephrasing your statements in another way.
There’s nothing you need to do to notify us of incorrect translations. The language engines used are continually becoming more accurate.
Can Pocketalk translate long sentences?
Pocketalk is designed for conversations. Speak the way you normally do, in full sentences, not statements. Pocketalk can handle up to 30 seconds of speaking per translation.
What types of settings can be adjusted on the device?
- Volume – adjusts the volume of the sounds and audio readouts.
- Sleep Settings – puts device to sleep to help preserve battery life.
- Text Size – adjusts the size of the texts on screen.
- System Language – the language for the device use itself.
- Brightness level – adjusts the brightness of the device screen.
- Clear translation history – removes all past translations from device.
- Restore factory settings – resets device to factory settings, but keeps latest software version installed on device.
Can I see my past translations?
Yes, Pocketalk can store up to 10,000 translations. Simply scroll up and down the timeline to view past translations, and tap on the translations to have them read out again.
Can I connect any external speakers?
Yep. Pocketalk is compatible with Bluetooth® 4.0, so you can connect to speakers that support Bluetooth. Connecting external speakers via Bluetooth might be useful if you want much higher volumes on the audio output. Please note that Pocketalk does not come equipped with any audio jacks.
How long is the data plan for the built-in mobile data version?
Two years from the time of initial activation. Your built-in mobile data will automatically launch when you turn on Pocketalk for the first time.
What happens at the end of the two-year mobile data plan?
After the two years, if you would like to continue using the the built-in data for your mobile data connections, you will need to renew your data plan. The cost and the exact procedure for how this renewal is yet to be decided but we will update the information on our website.
Or you are free to install a SIM card of your own (note that only the SIM card sold by us is supported). Or you can connect to WiFi or a personal hotspot.
Can I purchase the “add your own data” version of Pocketalk and install my own SIM card for mobile data?
Yes. You can purchase your own SIM card and install.
But we instead suggest buying the “Pocketalk Global SIM Card by Soracom” from our website because that is the only SIM card supported by us.
What are “Favorite” translations and how do they work?
As you continue to use Pocketalk, it stores a history of your translations – simply scroll through the list to see past translations. If you want, you can press and hold on a translation to mark any as “Favorite” translation. A star then appears on the Home Screen to easily recall your favorite translations for quick use.
Up to 500 Favorite translations can be stored and they will remain until you choose to delete them. Be careful! If you “clear translation history”, your Favorites will also be removed.
What about Privacy?
All statements are passed through to the large language engines to be translated. These engines do utilize the statements for optimizing their accuracy – the more voice input they receive, the more accurate their engines become.
No statements you enter into Pocketalk can be directly tied back to you.
Note that translations are stored on the Pocketalk device and in Pocketalk Center. These can be cleared at anytime you desire.
What about the product specifications?
- ARM Cortex53 Quad-Core 1.3GHz
- Operating System
- Custom OS (based on Android OS 8.1)
- Display Screen
- Touch Panel / 320×240 pixels
- Rechargeable Lithium Ion Battery (2200 mAh)
- Two Built-in Speakers (1.5 Watts)
- Dual Microphones with Noise Cancellation
- Mobile Data
3G (W-CDMA) / 4G (FDD-LTE)
- SIM Card Slot
- nano-SIM (Sourcenext ® SIMs only)
- embedded SIM
- Only available in “eSIM” (data plan) models
- Frequency Bands
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Operating Temperature
- 32°F to 113°F
- Standby Temperature
- -4°F to 140°F
- Battery Charging Port
- USB Type-C
- Charge Voltage (device)
- up to 5V
- Charge Electrical Current (device)
- Charge Voltage (cable)
- up to 5V
- Charge Electrical Current (cable)
- Battery Life (Standby)*1
- approx. 240 hours (4G LTE areas)
- Battery Life *2
- approx. 7 hours
- Time till Fully Charged (average)*3
- approx. 135 minutes
- approx. 3.5 ounces
- approx. 4.3 × 2.4 × 0.6 inches
- Strap hole
- Available (strap not included)
- POCKETALK Device
- User Manual
- USB Type-C charging cable (Type-C to Type-A)
*1 : Approximate battery life in standby state, when device left in areas with 4G LTE reception available. Note that battery life may vary depending on environments and device settings.
*2 : Approximate battery life when 5 minutes of translations carried out in 10 minute intervals (brightness: 50%, volume: 50%). Note that battery life may vary depending on environments and device settings.
*3 : When connected to 5V 1.8A outlets. Note that time may vary depending on environment and types of outlets / cables used.