Image: Night view of the citadel of Erbil

Today, Microsoft Translator adds two Kurdish dialects, Northern and Central, to its list of text translation languages. Northern and Central Kurdish are available now, or will be available soon, in the Microsoft Translator app, Office, and Translator for Bing.

You can also use Azure Cognitive Services Translator in your own applications, websites, and tools to add Northern and Central Kurdish text translation to or from more than 70 languages. To translate speech into Kurdish text, or to translate Kurdish text into another language with speech output, you can use Azure Cognitive Services Speech, which combines Translator’s AI-powered translation service with Speech’s advanced speech recognition and speech synthesis. You can view the list of languages available for speech recognition and speech synthesis on the Microsoft Translator website.

Northern and Central Kurdish are the two most common forms of the Kurdish language. Northern Kurdish, also known as Kurmanji, is spoken in Turkey, Syria, northern Iraq, and northwest and northeast Iran by 15-17 million Kurds. Central Kurdish, also known as Sorani, is spoken in Iraqi Kurdistan and western Iran by an estimated 9-12 million Kurds. These two dialects make up about 75% of all Kurdish speakers1.

Northern and Central Kurdish are generally not mutually understandable. Here are some examples of words and phrases in the two Kurdish dialects.

English Northern Kurdish Central Kurdish
Hello Silav سڵاو (Slaw)
What’s your name? Navê te çi ye? ناوت چییە؟ (Nawt tshya?)
Pleased to meet you Kêfxweş im bi nas kirina te خۆشحاڵبووم بە ناسینیت (Xoşhalbuum bi nasînit)

Learn more about the Northern and Central dialects of Kurdish on Bing.

What you can do with Microsoft Translator

At home

Translate real-time conversations, menus and street signs, websites, documents, and more using the Microsoft Translator app for Windows, iOS, Android, and the web. Learn more

At work

Globalize your business and customer interactions with text and speech translation powered by Translator and Microsoft Speech service, both members of the Azure Cognitive Services family. Learn more

In the classroom

Create a more inclusive classroom for both students and parents with live captioning and cross-language understanding. Learn more

For more information on Microsoft Translator please visit microsoft.com/translator.


1 Translators Without Borders: https://translatorswithoutborders.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Kurdish-Factsheet-English.pdf



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