Never order the wrong thing again: App translates Chinese restaurant menus


When you’re a foodie, ordering something you thought was pork fried rice, but ends up being fried pig intestines, is just an occupational hazard. It happens to the best of us. But the next time you need to translate the menu at a Chinese restaurant, there’s an app for that.

Waygo is designed to translate Chinese characters on menus and signs. All it requires is a semi steady hand and a smartphone camera. It uses your phone camera to read the text, then translates it. You don’t need an Internet connection.

In a comical video ad above, two men accidentally order a live chicken you have to kill yourself at the table. The table next to them is able to translate the menu and avoids this disaster.


We used Waygo on a portion of the menu at 101 Noodle Express. It matched translations for shrimp and pork dumplings, celery pork dumplings and leek and pork dumplings.

It should be noted that the app doesn’t work well when pointed at a computer screen. A translation for shrimp and pork dumplings turned into “Wide carry on your shoulder.”

The app allows 10 free translations per day with a Waygo trial. If you need more, you can purchase unlimited translations for $6.99.

Translate Abroad, the company behind Waygo, plans to launch more translation apps with different languages in the future.

Want more techie food news? Follow me on Twitter: @Jenn_Harris_



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