Why has Google named its translation service "Google Translate"? Wouldn't "Google Translation" or "Google Translator" be more natural?

3 Answers 3


This is marketing, not grammar. Verbs convey a feeling of action, by definition, so by using the verb translate, Google is hoping to emphasize that they're doing something. In theory, this makes their translation service sound more exciting and/or emphasizes that translation is a lot of work.

For very similar reasons, many people recommend that your résumé or CV should describe your work experience using verbs, which shows dynamic action on your part.

  • There is a semantic reason for it which has nothing to do with marketing.
    – Lambie
    Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 15:38

The name is in a commercial style which deliberately seeks to add "pizzazz" to product names. The verb connotes action.

It would not be surprising to find a Google app about city transportation schedules called Google Commute, or an iOS app about local restaurants called i-Eat or i-Dine.


It is Google Translate because it translates stuff for you. It is not a finished product.

The German translation of Gone with the Wind = a finished text.

The translation of the Bible into Russian = a finished text.

Google Translation for the online application would be a misnomer.

However, people will often cite a poor Google translation as "proof of x, y or z".

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