Evolution of Machine Interpreting

Article was written by Ewandro Magalhaes and Roman Civin


From data collected on the interpreting systems featured in Nimdzi’s Language Technology Atlas, we have compiled a public version of the Nimdzi Evolution Matrix. We have supplemented the data with the cumulative knowledge and experience of our experts who work with a variety of interpreting products on a daily basis.


The Nimdzi Machine Interpreting Matrix can be used to help developers and businesses assess the potential and promise of the main interpreting service providers on the market. For example, an investor could use the matrix to compare and contrast historical data and projections as they decide where to place their bets. Providers themselves could use this positioning to learn how mature and innovative the technology is as the basis for their M&A or divestiture decisions.

Players, Dimensions and Labels

The original Language Technology (LT) Landscape features over 150 different interpreting systems, broken down into four categories, with Machine Interpreting category being the most dynamic in this space. The matrix aims to give some order to this wild competition going on in that segment by sorting the racers according to the dimensions and labels identified below. 

In the first version of our momentum grid, we have narrowed it down to six (6) top contenders. The selection criteria centered on vendors whose solutions aim at providing interpretation for meetings or conferences that would otherwise require human interpreters. We left out solutions geared at helping users through short and quick daily interactions, like asking for directions, navigating urban centers, or finding care. 

The six vendors selected have been plotted on the map according to how solid they are (funding / revenue) and how fast they seem to be growing (client base growth) on the market as well as their ability to innovate and lead the space.


  • Client adoption, depicted horizontally, indicates  the provider’s relative growth since entering the market. It is a fair indication of how popular and well-received their solution has been.
  • The vertical axis reflects the financial availability of a provider to sustain growth. It is an indication of their endurance to go the distance in what is probably going to be a long game.

Crossing these two dimensions results in a reliable indicator of a provider’s product maturity (as evidenced by the pace of client adoption) and their ability to fuel future growth by waiting for greater market maturity and player consolidation. It helps answer a few important questions:

  • Is the provider’s lead based on the technical merit of its own solution? Or is their lead fueled by an inflow of investment that may or may not be sustainable overtime?
  • Can those in the lower right quadrant (large client adoption, low funding) continue to grow organically, or are they obvious targets for acquisition by players with deeper pockets? 
  • Are those on the bottom left quadrant on their way out? Can an influx of funding get them back on track? 
  • Will those on the upper left be able to leverage their funds and grow by acquisition?


Depending on how they fare against each of the two dimensions above, contenders will fall into one of four quadrants. In labeling each quadrant, we looked for an analogy that would preserve the competitive nature currently seen in the environment. The labels also introduce an element of speed, which is key to identifying trends in what is currently a very change-prone configuration. The labels are as follows:

  • Pacers (top center): Well-established and financially viable players with enough power to grow organically or wait competitors out.
  • Sprinters (top right): Financially viable and fast-growing players, with a declared appetite to stay in the lead pack.
  • Challengers (bottom right): Innovative and nimble players whose growth is fueled by the merits of their own product and their sales effort.
  • Laggers (bottom center): Low funding and dwindling client base, probably on their way out.
  • Bystanders (bottom left): Companies with low resources that have potential to skyrocket through innovation and become Pacers.

Disclaimer: Scoring is somewhat subjective, and so are the cut-offs

Financial availability is assessed through verifiable or estimated funding and revenue data available on the market or through consultations. 

While this scoring mechanism is not completely objective, and may be biased by industry perceptions, it provides a useful means of clustering. The separators between clusters were placed with simple sophistication to highlight key insights. However, these separators are not set in stone, and borderline cases could in fact go either way within a margin of uncertainty.

Ask the experts

The aspects that are most important for a particular technology buyer vary depending on the actual application. Talk to a Nimdzi expert to identify the specific needs of a VIT application in your organization. By carefully selecting the variables for its partners, Nimdzi creates custom assessments that result in a valuable tool for understanding the potential of the required language software.


The article was written by Ewandro Magalhaes, Nimdzi's Expert on Interpreting. If you wish to learn more, reach out to Ewandro at [email protected].

The article was co-written by Roman Civin, Nimdzi's Head of Solutions. If you wish to learn more, reach out to Roman at [email protected].

16 November 2023

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