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Japanese Localization

Japanese Localization

In order to attract Japanese customers and clients, you will have to familiarize yourself with the idea of Japanese localization. Japanese localization is the process of adapting the language, appearance, and functionality of a product or website for the Japanese market. A complex Asian language, Japanese presents a variety of unique challenges to Japanese localization professionals.

Japanese consumers are known to have high standards for the performance and appearance of products. To ensure a positive reception for your software, website, and documentation, it is a good idea to work with an experienced localization company. Your localization service provider should employ Japanese, native speaking teams of localization specialists who understand how to anticipate and solve the myriad of potential Japanese globalization issues.

Some examples of Japanese localization issues:
Japanese Localization: Web site IssuesColor schemeDate, time, currency formatsE-commerce paymentsJapanese Localization: Software IssuesTime-to-marketHigh user expectationsJapanese Localization: Documentation IssuesText lengthPrinting Japanese fontsJapanese Internationalization

Japanese Internationalization (I18n) can be defined as the process of enabling back end technologies to function or support any language and locale. Localization, on the other hand, deals primarily with the front end or linguistic and cosmetic aspects of a software application or website, including locale-specific Japanese content, Japanese cultural correctness, translations and design.

Some of the reasons for internationalizing are to ensure your application or website a) supports non-English characters (including double-byte enablement), b) sorts based on Japanese language rules, c) is architected by externalizing all translatable text strings (separate text from code), d) handles different address, time, date, and numerical formats, among other considerations.

The process of Japanese internationalization may include the following 4 steps:

1.      Discovery – Includes the preparation of a Japanese localization kit and an analysis of the current internationalization readiness of the source Web site or software application.

2.      Assessment – Includes review and analysis of the following:

o    Source architecture and source code of Web site or software application.

o    Global marketing plans and requirements.

o    Design, development and build processes.

o    Current I18N and localization strategies.

3.      Implementation – Includes externalizing text strings for ease of localization, currency/time/dates/numbers issue resolution, double-byte enabling, I18n-friendly build methodology, I18n test plan preparations, localization kit preparation, knowledge transfer I18n education, recommended I18n tools and any required tool training.

4.      Testing – Includes client-driven I18n and DBCS-enablement testing, bug reporting/fixing and regression testing.

Find more Japanese translation and localization resources in our translation blog:

For information on The Japanese language and translation, please see our information on Japanese Translation services.

Japanese Localization Requirements
Inoffensive colors for example
Change to standard Japanese formats
Enable various payment methods such as bank transfers
Japanese Localization Requirements
Translation memory tools help speed translation
Testers should be Japanese speakers
Japanese Localization Requirements
Accommodate possible text expansion/contraction
Embed fonts in PDF file for printer