Firefox Translations 1.2: free text translate option and usability improvements
Mozilla released Firefox Translations 1.2, an extension for the organization's Firefox web browser that adds translate functionality to it. The new version of the add-on comes with free text translations support, an option to change the target language, and other improvements.
Firefox Translations, for those who have not heard about the feature yet, is different than the majority of browser-integrated translation services. Unlike Google Translate, Bing Translate or others, Firefox Translations is offline-based. Means: no data is submitted about the websites or content to third-parties.
Firefox Translations is a game changer, at least for users who value privacy. I had a few "ifs" regarding the game changer part back in August 2022. Especially language support was limited at the time. While this is going to change in the coming years, thanks to a new EU project, which provides financing, it is a big limitation.
Firefox Translations 1.2 addresses at least one of the reservations that I had regarding the service. One point of criticism was that the add-on support full page translations only. The new version introduces a free text translate feature. It adds a new icon to the Firefox toolbar, which displays the free text translate interface then.
Type or paste text into the source field and get a translation in the destination field automatically. You may select source and target languages in the interface as well. Firefox Translations lacks an option to select text on a webpage to get it translated automatically, though.
Firefox Translations 1.2 includes a number of important improvements besides that. Firefox users may now select a different target language; the language was limited to the system language in previous versions of the add-on. There is also a new option to restore the previous state, instead of having to reload the page using Firefox controls.
Firefox users may now also block the translation feature on specific websites or for specific languages.
Most Firefox Translations users should receive the update automatically. It is available on the add-ons official page on Mozilla Add-ons as well (linked in the summary box below the article as usual).
Firefox Translations is a promising service, that works well for users who require it only for languages that are already supported. The next three years will see support for more language pairs, but this won't happen overnight. The four star rating for the add-on is based on that.
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