App Development

PhraseApp: How To Manage App Translation Without Losing Your Sanity


If you haven’t already experienced the difficulty of trying to translate software by passing CSVs of strings back and forth between translators, you should save yourself the pain and employ the streamlined solution that is PhraseApp. There are some standard issues that impede progress when using spreadsheets or other static files to collect translations. Using a localization platform like PhraseApp eliminates these issues, simplifies the overall process, and makes life easier for everyone involved on your project (triple win)! Here are some highlights:

One UI To Translate Them All

Gone are the days of wondering if you have the most recent copy of the Italian translations, or trying to keep track of whether or not you added the new strings into the German file before sending it off. They are all in ONE PLACE and can be updated in tandem. It’s glorious and magical, and best of all, EFFICIENT. Simply upload the localized strings - PhraseApp supports a great variety of file formats (see for a full list) – and create a locale for each language.

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PhraseApp provides a single space in which the entire team may collaborate over an always up-to-date version of the strings. This is particularly useful as copy in the app continues to fluctuate, and additions or revisions need to be made to the existing translations. The UI is easily navigable, and importing and exporting is quick and intuitive enough for a non-developer like me to take on myself (which has made my developers extremely happy).

Are We Done Yet?

The Reports section of PhraseApp provides an easy means of communicating progress to higher-ups and eliminates the need to create reports on your own or request updates from translators. Having this simple statistic available is a big perk – any tool that allows me to get the information I need without having to interrupt my team is one I want to be using. phraseapp blog-post-image-3 RB

Just Add Another Column, I Guess…

PhraseApp’s supremacy over the spreadsheet is made particularly clear by the markup available in its interface. Here you may comment, see a history of changes, attach a screenshot, and provide a character limit. This is, in the words of Donald Trump, HUUUUUUGE. Trying to capture this level of detail in a spreadsheet adds clutter and requires manual effort, which, as anything reliant on human memory, introduces additional risk of error.

PhraseApp includes a robust search tool that far exceeds the offerings of “command + F” (sorry, spreadsheets), and the ability to filter results. There is also the option to exclude a translation, by which you can remove strings that are never displayed to a user, saving translators from wasting time translating hidden words. These tools make the interface highly navigable, saving both time and effort when necessary updates are needed. For example, when a 7-character English word expands into a 36-character phrase in French (this happens), I am able to search and replace all instances with a translator-approved abbreviation myself instead of wasting my translator’s time. BOOM.

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That Special Something

PhraseApp is not the only software that solves the problems of spreadsheet-based translation, but beyond the benefits described above, this is why I recommend PhraseApp over the others:

  • PhraseApp was born as an internal tool, so its creators have experienced the difficulties of localization and are themselves representative of the "end user.” This positions them well to anticipate your needs.
  • PhraseApp’s team is proactive in soliciting contributions from their users and welcome any feedback with grace and enthusiasm.
  • The PhraseApp team is also passionate and innovative. They constantly improve the tool and continue to expand its functionality.
  • Most importantly, PhraseApp’s team doesn’t hide behind a wall of user forums and FAQ pages. They are dedicated to personalized and custom support in a way that sets them apart from larger corporations. Every question or need I’ve had has been quickly resolved by their team.

Overall, this tool is one well worth securing and a great help in management of translation work. Find out more about the features offered and other details by checking out their site , and next time you find yourself facing an oncoming tide of translation work, take the “loca” out of localization with PhraseApp.

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