Google expands transliteration to 17 languages
Google's popular transliteration tool has now been expanded to support over 17 global languages. With this the feature now supports Arabic, Bengali, Greek, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Sanskrit, Serbian, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu.
Anyone who needs to frequently or occasionally type in Hindi or other Indian languages, understands how much of a pain this can be with our normal QWERTY keyboards, especially since the very structure of each language differs.
While one may consider using online translation tools, to type content in English, the grammar of the result produced by such tools is often quite lacking, and the process makes even less sense if you know already the target language.
This is where Transliteration can be a much better way of getting your ideas out in other languages. Unlike translation, transliteration requires you to "spell out" the words of the other language phonetically.
For example, while translating, you'd probably enter "thank you" to get धन्यवाद (thank you in Hindi), however with transliteration you'd enter "dhanyawad" in English, which sounds like its Hindi counterpart. You can thus get better results than translation while utilizing your language skills, and not needing to learn another keyboard layout.
The transliteration tool also provides a bookmarklet which allows you to enable the transliteration functionality in any textbox in any website, and they also have a transliteration API which will allow you to enable this functionality in your own website.
Google is also providing a transliteration IME (Input Method Editor) which will bring this support to your application even while you're offline. You can access the Google Transliteration tool from here, and can download the transliteration IME from here.