What is this story about

Using the PressReader platform, users can subscribe to digital versions of popular newspapers and magazines on their iOS, Android, computers, and other devices.

PressReader offers over 7,000 publications from over 120 countries available in more than 60 languages, and since 2017 have been using Yandex Translate to help deliver a superior reader experience.

Adapting a product to a multilingual environment

PressReader processes thousands of pages each and every day, extracting text and images from them. Many newspapers, including The Washington Post, USA Today, International Herald Tribune, Daily Mail, and The Herald, appear on the platform as soon as they hit newsstands. All materials become available for search, and they are easy to read on mobile devices.

PressReader makes publications available to the broadest range of readers possible. A German article published in the morning must be available within a few hours to an Indian student or an American businessman in their native languages.

No agency can translate such volumes with any real speed — what’s needed is a high-quality machine translation.

This became all the more important during the pandemic when the need for access to content online became even greater.

Price, quality, scaling, and data processing speed

To create your own machine translation service, you would have to hire a team of developers, set up the infrastructure, and spend a lot of time on product development. The project costs alone would make it unprofitable for virtually any company.

Adopting cloud technologies can significantly reduce these costs. This also makes it much easier to store, organize, and transfer large amounts of information.

PressReader considered three options at the selection stage: Yandex Translate, Microsoft Translator, and Google Translate. They chose Yandex Translate because its quality and scalability are as good as its competitors while costing much less.

Integration with Yandex Translate

Yandex Translate is connected to PressReader via the API. Using cloud technologies, the service receives texts from the aggregator, determines the source language, and then returns a translated version.

Integrating the machine translation service took PressReader less than a week. Now, you don’t need to speak Italian or French to read the most recent editorial in La Repubblica or the latest issue of Vogue France. Despite the huge amount of work involved, Yandex. Cloud processes the information at impressive speeds and displays the final results almost immediately.

Yandex Translate uses a hybrid machine translation model that includes neural network and statistical approaches. The result obtained from both systems is evaluated by an algorithm based on the CatBoost training method. The evaluation considers dozens of factors: from the length of the sentence (the statistical model is better at translating short phrases and rare words) to the syntax. Then the algorithm evaluates both translations based on a range of factors and shows the user the best version.

Users get instant access to content in a language they understand

By using cloud technologies, PressReader allows its users to read any issue of almost any popular newspaper or magazine worldwide in over 60 languages.

The aggregator provides translations for 365 language pairs (and this figure keeps rising). Translating, for example, from Russian to French or from Finnish to Czech is no problem. Yandex Translate translates over two billion characters for PressReader every month.

Running a business on an international scale brings additional opportunities and challenges, such as adapting your product to a multilingual environment. This applies mostly to media platforms, whose users expect to get instant access to content in a language they understand and in a user-friendly format. Only cloud services can provide fast and high-quality translations when dealing with large volumes of information. Our four years of experience working with PressReader shows that Yandex.Cloud can meet international companies’ growing needs for unique services and make valuable content available to people worldwide.

Oleg Koverznev,
COO at Yandex.Cloud


Alexey Krasnoperov,
VP of Platform Development, PressReader
Alexey Krasnoperov,
VP of Platform Development, PressReader

Over the past four years, Yandex.Cloud has helped us provide high-quality translations to our readers worldwide. Integrating Yandex Translate with our product was easy, and their technologies keep improving. We haven’t received a single complaint about translation quality since adopting Yandex Translate. It’s just great.

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