Chinese Translation News

Over-the-Phone Simultaneous Interpretation Made It Possible to Conduct Online Focus Groups in China

Traditionally, focus groups in China and focus groups that require translations are conducted on site.  With the over-the-phone simultaneous interpretation service provided by Abacus Chinese Translation Services, it is now possible to conduct online focus groups in China for American Companies.

by Sunny Wang
November 13, 2009

Los Angeles, California.: With the advancement of internet phone technologies, it is now (November 2009) possible to provide simultaneous interpretation services over the phone simultaneous, enabling online focus groups to be conducted in China, a service provided by Rockhopper Research Inc., a company based in Los Angeles, California.

Traditionally, focus group, a form of qualitative research in which a group of people are asked about their attitude towards a product, service, concept, advertisement, idea, or packaging, is conducted in one physical location in which everyone meets face to face. This is especially true when the participants speak a foreign language. Questions are asked in the interactive group setting where participants are free to talk with other group members.  An interpreter, then, is to interpret everything the participants said simultaneously into English.  Rockhopper Research Inc. recently made a breakthrough in running such focus groups in China in which people do not have to meet physically.  Instead, internet technology helps them to bring participants in different parts of China together, and a simultaneous Chinese translator, Samuel Chong, interpreted everything simultaneously from Chinese into English, also through the internet.

"With Internet phone technology, it seems that everything is possible." says Samuel Chong, the Chinese simultaneous interpreter at Abacus Chinese Translation Services. "I have done many simultaneous interpretations before, but this is the first time I am doing a simultaneous interpretation over the phone for a focus group located in China."

Rockhopper Research Inc, the company who pioneered this method, does not wish to disclose its proprietary technology.  However, from the experience of the Chinese translator, it has ran fairly well.

"I was surprised that they were able to get people from different regions of China together, and to have a free and open discussion.  Participants can see each other's faces online.  The focus group moderator is also very professional and experienced.  It seems that this company is an ideal candidate for companies who wish to conduct focus group studies in China." Adds Samuel Chong.

"There are other companies that provide online focus group qualitative and quantitative market researches such as e-FocusGroups.  However, I do not know if they are able to conduct the focus groups that would require a simultaneous interpreter".  Chong suggested.  "If Rockhopper Research Inc. can do it in China, they can do it anywhere in the world."

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