Simultaneous Interpretation

No doubt, one of the most challenging language-related professions is Simultaneous Interpretation. The real-time oral translation of a speech is called simultaneous interpretation. In this type of interpretation, the interpreter talks alongside the speaker, thus resulting in the audience understanding the speech as soon as it is said.

It’s pretty different from consecutive Interpretation, which requires the speaker to pause while the Interpretation and translation happen. Simultaneous Interpretation is also much harder, considering the translator has little to no time to think before translating. This is why it is challenging since the translator must convey the message appropriately along with all the tones and implications. They need to know what phrases to use and what vocabulary is appropriate to convey the right message.

What are the primary skills involved in simultaneous Interpretation?

The basic skills required to be a language interpreter are to have an expansive lexicon and impeccable grammar in more than one language. Apart from this, they must also have a deep knowledge of the cultural details of the languages they can speak to ensure that their audience can genuinely grasp their message.

But to be identified and certified as a simultaneous Interpreter, numerous other skills are required. They must be able to stay calm under extreme duress. Since they must interpret simultaneously, they must be quick on their feet and very witty. They must have incredible critical thinking skills since they are forced to listen and analyze simultaneously. Their command of language is an absolute must. Since they listen to words in one language while speaking in another, there is always a chance of messing up. Even Bilingual interpreters, even though they only know two languages, are at high risk of getting their thoughts muddled.

Another essential aspect to remember is that simultaneous Interpretation occurs mainly amongst large impatient, and restless crowds. So the translator must be able to recognize primary information in split seconds as well as cut down any unnecessary information during translation.

Where is Simultaneous Interpretation used?

The ideal setting for simultaneous Interpretation is a place with a large audience, Be it formal or fun, and a place with a jittery crowd requires a Simultaneous Interpretation.

Diplomatic Conferences: Meetings between countries and states are meaningful and impactful and require the utmost tact and care during translation.

Conventions and seminars: Every scientist is comfortable and confident expressing their thoughts in their native language, and the audience can understand their thread of thought thanks to a simultaneous interpreter.

Business and board meetings: These important meets that often determine the progress of a country require crisp and clear communication.

Courtrooms: No victim or plaintiff should be denied justice simply because they cannot understand a language.

Tours: A tour is no fun without the true essence of the tour, the language. Enjoying the language while understanding it is a must.

Concerts: When an artist wants to thank and pass on a message, simultaneous interpretation service comes into play.

Pros and cons of simultaneous Interpretation

Like the two sides of a coin, even simultaneous Interpretation has its benefits and disadvantages.


1. A lot less time is wasted in translation as compared to consecutive Interpretation. The message is translated and relayed immediately as soon as it is spoken.

2. Since simultaneous interpreters tend to work in shifts, each person gets a break when they switch, relieving them of some stress.

3. It is similar to seeing subtitles on a show since you hear the language you understand. In contrast, you see the events happening in real-time, which is a more comfortable experience.


1. These interpreters are usually placed in a booth further away from the speaker themself, which can be a little distracting and does not allow for improvisations.

2. This Interpretation requires much expensive equipment. It is in no way cost-friendly.

What is the essential equipment required for simultaneous Interpretation?

Some of the basic equipment required for simultaneous Interpretation includes a soundproof booth. Since the interpreters are already exposed to two different languages, it is best to eliminate all the background noise and disturbances to allow them to concentrate. It must also allow for two-way communication between the speaker and translator in emergencies. Some more expensive booths often have air conditioning and soundproof plexiglass to obtain the best translation.

Some other basics are a microphone and a headset, a transmitter, a monitoring device, a receiver with a headset, and all the necessary ports and cables. All the microphones must be attached to either clear speakers in the venue or the case of multiple languages being translated, to the earpieces of the audience.

Another vital aspect is volume control, which is handled by IR systems. It also adds a cloak of encryption through static noise or fog, which is necessary for high-profile meetings with sensitive information.

White Globe as a simultaneous interpretation service provider

Simultaneous interpretation is important because it is essential to entrust such tasks with reliable interpreting companies, those having years of experience and loyal clientele that is indicative of their excellent service. White Globe is one such company, guaranteed to offer unparalleled services that will yield desirable results.


Ans: There are two types of interpretations. Those that don’t use equipment, from booths to microphones, are known as whispering simultaneous interpretations, locally known as Chuchotage. On the other hand, those that utilize equipment are referred to as Bidule.

Ans: Yes. Suppose you are organizing a virtual event or looking for a simultaneous interpreter for conferences. In that case, White Globe provides on-site, remote video, and over-the-phone interpreters who are well versed with the systems and execute seamless Interpretation without interruptions.

Ans: Yes, some interpreters specialize in certain types of conversations. Companies like White Globe understand such specializations and provide political and diplomatic interpreters aware of current matters and relevant jargon.