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How to Use Firefox Translations to Translate Websites in Your Browser

If you regularly translate websites in your browser, Firefox’s official add-on might be of interest. Here’s how to use Firefox Translations.

You can have your favorite websites translated into your native or preferred language while using the popular Firefox browser. This is possible with the Firefox Translations add-on. The Firefox Translations add-on works in-browser and is free.

In this article, you’ll learn more about Firefox Translations, how the add-on works, how to install and use the add-on, and how Firefox Translations compares with other cloud-based translation services.


How Does Firefox Translations Work?

You may already be familiar with the likes of Interpreter mode in Google Assistant, but wonder how translation tools work. To translate languages, cloud-based services send your data to centralized data centers where GPU clusters deploy large language models to handle the translations.

However, this is not the case with Firefox Translations. Mozilla’s Firefox Translations deploys all the necessary language Machine Learning tools locally and automatically translates websites directly in your browser.

This offers complete privacy and anonymity allowing you to translate websites easily without giving away your personal data to third parties in the process.

With Firefox Translations, you can fill a web form in your own language and have it dynamically translated to the page’s language. It also flags low-confidence translations in red so that you can be aware of potential translation errors.

Firefox Translations currently supports eight major languages, which are:

  • Spanish
  • Estonian
  • English
  • German
  • Czech
  • Bulgarian
  • Portuguese
  • Italian

Four more languages are in the works including Russian, Persian (Farsi), Icelandic, Norwegian Nynorsk, and Norwegian BokmÃ¥l. Wondering what language you’re seeing? Try these popular language finder services.

How to Install and Use Firefox Translations

Here’s how to install and use Firefox Translations to translate websites in Firefox:

  1. Open your Firefox browser.
  2. Go to the Firefox Browser add-ons page.

  3. Click on Extensions.
  4. Search for Firefox Translations using the search box at the top of the page.
  5. From the options available, click on Firefox Translations. Or, you can simply go directly to the Firefox Translations page.
  6. Then click on Add to Firefox.
  7. Review the information in the permissions pop-up and click Add.

The add-on should now reflect on the address bar next to the Bookmarks icon.

How to Use Firefox Translations to Translate a Website

Firefox Translations is super easy to use. Here’s how to use Firefox Translations to translate a website.

  1. Open your Firefox browser and head to the website, page, or article you want to translate.
  2. Click on the Firefox Translations icon to reveal a new toolbar beneath the address bar.
  3. Click on the Choose a language box and select your target language.

  4. Click on Translate and wait for the translation engine to load and process the page.
  5. Check the Enable translations of forms box to allow you fill forms in other languages.
  6. Check the Highlight potential errors in red box to flag possible misinterpretations.
  7. You can also ask Firefox Translations to automatically translate the current tab for all sites you visit by clicking on Translate this tab automatically as you browse.

Firefox Translations vs. Cloud-Based Translators

So, how does Firefox Translations compare with other cloud-based translation services like Google Translate and other popular online translators?

The major difference between Firefox Translations and other cloud-based translators is that whereas the latter sends out your data to centralized servers to be processed and translated via GPU, the former handles this process locally on the client-side using your CPU. We’ve covered the differences between a GPU and a CPU.

This means that no data leaves your computer while translating a website with Firefox Translations. This ensures complete privacy and may serve as a model for more privacy-focused tech products.

Translate Websites With Ease Using Firefox Translations

There are many use cases for Firefox Translations and for online translators in general. For instance, if you stumble upon important information while browsing, you can translate it and forward it to family members or friends in a language they understand.

As online translators become more efficient, accurate, and accessible, we should see more client-side translators like Firefox Translations that work for websites and even word processors like Microsoft Word or Google Docs.

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