You can’t always do what you want.
You can’t paint with the quiet elegance of Bob Ross.
You can’t single-handedly bring your favorite show back from cancellation. You’re not Netflix.
And sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you just can’t translate a certain phrase from English to Russian or Russian to English.
Whether you don’t know the Russian vocabulary, don’t understand the underlying grammar rules or just don’t know the Russian alphabet well enough yet, there can be plenty of factors standing in the way of translating on your own.
But luckily, with these seven online Russian translators, you’ll never have to translate alone again.
How to Choose the Best Online Russian Translator for You
Consider how many features you need/want.
Each online translator offers different features, so you should consider how many features you want and/or need when selecting one.
If you’re simply looking to translate text, a basic translator with fewer features may be easier to use. However, if you’re studying Russian and want to use an online translator as a Russian learning tool, options with more bells and whistles can be versatile study tools.
Pay attention to how you can input words/phrases.
Like Russian translator apps, online Russian translators offer a wide variety of input methods, including audio, text and websites.
Choosing a translator with an input option you find convenient will make it easier for you to use it quickly and efficiently.
Consider your preferred interface.
While some online translators offer similar features, the interfaces themselves can vary quite wildly. The best interface is a matter of personal preference, so pay attention to which look you like best as you try out these translators.
Translate Anytime, Anywhere with These 7 Online Russian Translators
Many Russian learners can understand standalone Russian words and short phrases, but once they start speaking with natives or interacting with authentic material, they’re lost. There’s always a ton of slang and idioms in foreign languages that are hard to master!
That’s why FluentU is a handy tool to have alongside your online Russian translator.
Not only will you familiarize yourself with authentic Russian media and learn to understand Russian accents, but FluentU also provides Russian and English subtitles for all its videos. You can even hover over a Russian word in the subtitles to pause a video and read the definition. This is a fantastic way to both quickly translate Russian words and understand how they’re used in the real world.
FluentU is available on your web browser and as an app at the iTunes and Google Play stores. Bookmark or download it to keep it right next to one of these seven Russian translators!
LexiLogos offers a simple, straightforward interface that translates short texts (150 words or fewer at a time) between Russian and English or English and Russian. However, while the interface may seem simple, the features it offers are pretty awesome.
My favorite thing about LexiLogos is that it allows you to translate through multiple translators, meaning you can enter the text just once to see how other translators (including PROMT, Reverso, Google Translate, Yandex, Systran and Bing Microsoft Translator) will translate the text. This is a handy way to cross-reference a translation between multiple translators to ensure the translation is as accurate as possible.
You can enter text using your keyboard. However, if you don’t have a Russian keyboard installed, LexiLogos provides you with some helpful options. The Russian alphabet (in alphabetical order) appears below the input box. You can click the necessary letters to spell the words/phrases you want translated. If you’d prefer a larger version of this, you can also click the “Russian keyboard” link for an easier-to-use, alphabetic list of Russian letters.
While the main translation service is obviously text, you can also use it to translate web pages. To do so, scroll down the main page and click “web page translation.” From here, you can select which other translator you want to run the translation through.
Available: iOS | Android
Yandex.Translate offers a simple interface but pairs it with some additional features you won’t find just anywhere.
For instance, Yandex.Translate offers a huge array of input methods. You can translate websites, images and text. Don’t have a Russian keyboard? That’s cool. Yandex.Translate has a keyboard you can use (click the keyboard graphic in the text input box), and it’s laid out like a traditional Russian keyboard so you can start getting a hang of the layout.
Not sure how something is spelled? The input area also offers spellcheck, so you don’t have to be so precise. If you prefer, you could also just speak what you want translated to save yourself a little trouble.
Yandex.Translate also offers some additional features Russian learners can use. For instance, you can listen to audio pronunciations of inputted or translated texts. Want to study a phrase you’ve just translated? You can share it, copy it or add it to a collection to give it a little more attention later.
Available: iOS | Android
Wish you could get a quick, in-context example of words and phrases you translate? PROMT can offer you just that, making it much easier to understand how to actually use common words and phrases in real life.
PROMT offers fairly standard text input methods. You can paste text, type it or use the virtual Russian keyboard to enter Russian text. Additionally, spellcheck helps you find errors in your entry before translating. Once translated, PROMT provides some useful features. You can share, copy or print your translation.
However, PROMT’s true claim to fame is its examples. If you’re translating a common word or phrase, PROMT will provide you with some example sentences that use that word or phrase, giving you the perfect opportunity to practice.
Systran offers one of the simplest, most straightforward online translator formats you’re likely to encounter. Input your text using a simple box on the right side of the screen, and Systran translates it for you. It’s that easy.
Granted, you won’t find any fancy entry methods, pop-up keyboards or other frills, but if you really just want to translate text quickly without any distraction, Systran gets the job done.
Smart Link offers many of the features you’ll find with other online translators. Russian keyboard? Check. Spellchecker? Check. Ability to run through several translation services? Check (PROMT), check (Google Translator) and check (Bing Microsoft Translator).
But one unique feature sets Smart Link apart from the other translators you’ll find online: Back translation.
What’s back translation, you ask? Good question. Back translation is the translation of text from the original language into the target language and then back into the original language. This is a convenient way to check to see if the text is consistent. If not, there could be an issue occurring in the translation that you should investigate.
Available: iOS | Android
If you’re looking for a go-to translator to help you out of virtually any Russian language pickle you may encounter, you can’t go wrong with Google Translate.
On the surface, Google Translate looks relatively simple—but as you play around with it, you’ll discover more and more features.
Once you’ve set your language translation options, you can input text in a variety of ways. You can input it as audio by clicking the microphone icon in the text input box. Need a Russian keyboard? Click the keyboard icon. Want to translate a document? Just upload it. Need a website translated? Just enter the link. Amazing, no?
Once you’ve translated your text, you’ll have almost as many options for what to do with it. For plain text, you can play audio of your translation. Play it a second time to hear a slower pronunciation. For shorter words and phrases, Google Translate will also provide a list of possible alternatives along with a gray bar that indicates how common they are. You can also save, copy and/or share your translated text.
Bing Microsoft Translator
Available: iOS | Android
Bing Microsoft Translator is another high-power online Russian translator. It may not offer quite as much versatility as Google Translate, but it still has some terrific options.
You can enter either text or a website URL for translation. Do note, however, that there’s no Russian keyboard available, so you’ll either need to have one installed or copy and paste the text from elsewhere.
One unique feature of Bing Microsoft Translator is that you can hear audio pronunciations for both your inputted and translated text. Plus, you can select whether you want to hear a male or female voice. You can also copy and/or share your translations.
While you might not always be able to translate Russian words and phrases with just your brain, with these seven online Russian translators at your fingertips, you’ll never struggle to find the words you need.
If you liked this post, something tells me that you'll love FluentU, the best way to learn Russian with real-world videos.