#What is localization?

You might have seen some Asian translation failures which is not accurate in Asian countries.
Is it because of poor translation? Well, I would say that it did go through translation well but not localization.

# What is localization?

Basically, localization is changing product/service’s language into local languages, it requires various additional work than translation.
Localization has advent in 1980’s as a result of software development and supply.
For example, we can think of Windows or Microsoft as localized products.
Those software offer many languages so that everyone in the world can purchase and use it no matter what language they speak.


In this manner, localization contributes to overcome language barriers that exist between technology and culture.
Moreover, it aims at providing identical quality, productivity and entertainment.

Recently, some game developers considers localization from the beginning like making a character of the country which will create great amount of profits.



# What’s different from translation? 

In general, countless people assume the term ‘localization’ as the term ‘translation’.
Unfortunately, localization and translation are not identical concept; in fact, localization includes translation.


Translation (t8n)

Translation is, basically, a process of text replacement in another language. It expresses word for word with consideration of grammar and syntax.
Cultural context may or may not be reflected in translation, so it’s more appropriate for literal content such as manuals, legal documents, books, documentation, technical publications, medical and scientific information, and more.

Localization (L10n)

Localization requires more than the translation does—content adaptation to the language and the target language’s culture and style.
The goal of localization is creating a content of a product or service which projects targeting culture on it.
And it will be with the look and feel for certain targeted audience with local inclination.
Therefore, localization contains not only text but also other works such as graphics, content modification and local format application.


# ‘Easy as pie’ – localization and translation example

It is culture that differentiate them.
Let’s assume that we translate ‘Easy as pie.’ in Korean for Korean audience.
It means ‘it’s simple.’ and translation will give you the same sentence, ‘it’s simple.’

However, localization will give you the different answer. Instead of ‘it’s simple.’, it rewrites it as ‘eating cold soup.’ which means ‘it’s simple.’ in Korean saying version.

While translation simply conveys the meaning of the sentence, localization changes it with Korean culture reflected for Korean audience.
And those two will give the audience different impact in their cultural context as a result.



#Localization – Easy global market entry

Due to localization’s  attributes, culture, localization is recommended to global companies.
With localization, they can advance into global market simply and easily.

But if your localization is poor or not in your targeted region’s cultural context, it will make your business undervalued.

Therefore, when taking localization into account, choose local localization company you target.
No one outside of culture can fully understands the culture, and it will eventually cause problems and waste your time and money.

Especially, when it comes to Asia, TEXTree offers the best localization service.


We have our Korean, Chinese and Japanese native speakers to review your localization.
Moreover, compared to western countries, Asia has cheaper labor cost which affects on your localization expenditure.

If you consider Asian localization, you can contact us and consult your localization anytime.

Make your business in Asia easy and simple with us!

You can refer to the TEXTree’s case study of localization below.

Abby Lee
Abby LeeMarketing team
T +82. 70. 8270. 8970 | F +82. 2. 3431. 4273