About a year ago, Twitter began offering instant tweet translations, powered by Bing. As with any basic translation tool, it wasn’t always the most accurate thing around, but it worked in many instances.
And now it’s gone. There are tweets from people complaining about the lack of the Bing translate going as far back as August 2nd, so it appears that Twitter quietly phased out the feature.
The bing translate button came and went. Now I haz te go back to old time consuming way to read tweets in some other languages. @Twitter 🙁
— R U Stalkingme? (@2complex2know) August 2, 2014
Did the bing translate tweet feature get taken away from twitter? Or just me?
— Adam Elmakias (@elmakias) August 4, 2014
We confirmed, through searches for tweets in various languages, that the Bing translation feature is nowhere to be found on desktop or mobile.
Going forward, it’s unlikely that Twitter would be content to exist without some sort of translation feature. Twitter is too global, and the way news and trends are spread across the social landscape pretty much demands some basic sort of translation. Maybe they removed Bing translate because they were unsatisfied with its performance (it had a tendency to do some weird things). Maybe they’re just making it better, and will relaunch it at some point.
Or maybe Twitter is moving away from Bing as its translation source. Bing and Twitter have had a solid search partnership for nearly five years – one they continue to expand – so it’s not like Twitter and Bing are on the outs or anything.