While many speech recognition and voice translator programs exist today, Microsoft has demonstrated its new one that is well ahead of its competition. They have showcased their new software at Microsoft's TechFest 2012, and have named it Monolingual TTS. (TTS, Text To Speech)
Unlike most translators, this one has the capability to output the translation in a voice that sounds just like your own and also includes a 3D image of your face. Additionally, it simulates movements of your facial expressions such as your lips and eyebrows while it speaks and can currently support 26 different languages. However, their software is not completely ideal yet as it will take up to an hour of audio-visual 2D video recording to create the avatar simulation. During the process, a 2D-to-3D reconstruction algorithm is used to create the face simulation and data is collected for the speech synthesis.
The Monolingual TTS voice translator can have many useful applications when fully completed. Microsoft suggests it can be used in applications such as a voice-agent, telepresence, gaming, and speech translation. If it is possible to create an app for smart phones out of this software, it can be a very valuable tool for people who like to travel to foreign countries. Without a doubt, it will change the way we all do business internationally.