Timekettle Fluentalk T1 Review Real Time Pocket Translator Device

Friday, April 07, 2023

Can be frustrating communicating in a new language, especially when you're in the country for a short stay. This is where a translator device like the Timekettle Fluentalk T1 can come handy!

Fluentalk T1 is a handheld standalone translator device powered by ASR technology - the same type of speech dictation software used by Siri and Google Assistant, which is based on machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI), which converts human speech into text in real time. Fluentalk T1 also integrates an AI voice which translates your voice into the foreign language of your choosing.

Fluentalk T1 looks a lot like a phone - it even has an 8MP rear camera, although it is only designed for photo image translation. Once you take a photo, you can translate the converted text into any language without having to re-take the photo again, based so, if you already own an Android phone you will find navigating the T1 device very familiar. There are also physical buttons on the device to manually prompt the speech/text translation. The backside of the T1 is completely flat so, it doesn't rock on a desk. 

Fluentalk T1 uses 150 translator servers and accelerators, including Google Translate and Deepl to translate voice and text in real time. Most of the languages supported have to be accessed online via mobile data or Wifi connection but, the T1 device can also store languages offline, thanks to the built-in internal ROM memory. Fluentalk T1 is also equipped with RAM memory, which allows you to temporary store conversations and use them at a later stage.

Fluentalk T1 comes pre-loaded with 8 languages (Chinese, French, Russian, English, German, Korean, Japanese and Spanish) organized in pairs of two (e.g.Chinese - English//English - Spanish//English - Russian//, etc). You can choose to have Fluentalk T1 translate from Chinese to English or English to Chinese by pressing the blue-dotted or red-dotted button. 
The AI voice translator picks up your own voice an the other person's voice via two  built-in microphones and outputs the audio via the internal speaker. You can change between languages offline instantly, making it ideal in a hurry.

The Fluentalk T1 translator device supports physical SIM card and eSIM (digital SIM card). The fact that Fluentalk T1 has a built-in SIM card tray is a big selling point because even the new iPhone 14 models (only in the United States) do not come with SIM card support (only eSIM). The Fluentalk T1 translator takes around 1.5 hours to fully charge from 0% to 100% and has a battery life runtime of 3.5 hours.

As far as performance, the Fluentalk T1 translator device is capable of picking up physical voice (face to face), as well as audio from a phone/computer so, you could potentially use Fluentalk T1 for translating movies, TV shows and music videos but not all. The Fluentalk T1 will struggle picking up most movies so, there are limitations. 

The Timekettle Fluentalk T1 translator is, certainly, a nifty useful gadget. It does what it says on the tin - making it possible to understand and communicate with someone in a different language. Some disadvantages facing T1 include the price tag, which is similar to a midrange smartphone, making Fluentalk T1 more expensive than a translator mobile app. Fluentalk T1 also has no 3.5mm headphone jack but supports bluetooth earbuds. 
While Fluentalk T1 supports a lot of languages, it doesn't support languages such as the Odia language, which has over 40 million speakers - as many speakers as Czech, Hungarian and Swedish combined. Dimensions of Fluentalk T1 is 11.5cm long x 6cm wide x 1cm thick. Weight is 116 grams.

Potential deal breakers
  • No 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Cannot accept/make calls
  • As expensive as a smartphone
  • Cannot record video
  • Cannot playback video
  • Cannot stream/play music
  • Doesn't support 5G SIMs
  • No micro SD card support
  • Plastic construction
  • Rattling buttons
  • No protective case included
  • Limited internal storage - 32GB
  • Not capable of recognizing multiple languages simultaneously
  • Recording not supported in spectator mode

Selling points 
  • Smaller than a smartphone
  • Works via mobile SIM or WiFi
  • Image translation support 
  • Free 2 year eSIM support
  • 3GB of RAM
  • Adjustable speaking interval
  • Tactile clicky buttons
  • Effective for face-to-face communication
  • Real time voice output
  • Real time text output 
  • 3.5 hrs continuous translation
  • 4 day standby time
  • Android 10 interface
  • Supports over 75 countries
  • Supports 40 languages
  • 4 inch touchscreen
  • Anchor point for lanyard
  • Physical SIM card tray
  • 720p display
  • Pre-loaded common expressions
  • Supports 4G LTE
  • Voice memo
  • Chat translation
  • World clock
  • Currency exchange rates
  • SIM card support
  • Built-in flashlight
Accessories included are a pin tool, lanyard and charging cable - both unbranded. You can buy the Timekettle Fluentalk T1 translator from amazon and Fluentalk website.

Similar Gadget Explained Reviews


Connect With Gadget Explained