The App Store is available in over 150 different countries, and internationalizing your app is the first step to reach this global market. Using iTunes Connect, you specify whether your app is available in all territories or specific territories. Then you customize your app for each target market that you want to support. Users in other countries want to use your app in a language they understand and see dates, times, and numbers in familiar, regional formats.
Localization and Internationalization go hand in hand. There is more to localization than just strings. You also have to take into account dates, text format etc. It is important to understand the difference between internationalization and localization and how it affects your project. Let’s start by defining each term.
Localization is the process of translating your app into multiple languages. But before you can localize your app, you internationalize it.
Internationalization is the process of making your app able to adapt to different languages, regions, and cultures. Because a single language can be used in multiple parts of the world, your app should adapt to the regional and cultural conventions of where a person resides. An internationalized app appears as if it is a native app in all the languages and regions it supports.
At a glance, here is what is involved in each process.
TraductoPro supports incremental localization of your Xcode project. But first you need to do all the prep work including internationalizing your user interface and code during development.
Internationalize Your App
Prepare your app for localization by separating language and locale differences from the rest of your user interface and code.
- Use base internationalization to separate user-facing text from your .storyboard and .xib files.
- In Interface Builder, use Auto Layout so views adjust to the localized text.
- Separate other user-facing text from your code.
- Use standard APIs to handle the complexity of different writing systems and locale formats.
- Adhere to the user’s settings when formatting, sorting, searching, and parsing data.
- If the app supports right-to-left languages, mirror the user interface and change the text direction as needed.
Localize Your App
Export and import the localizations using standard file formats.
- Lock views in the user interface.
- Export the localizations.
- Submit the exported files to translators.
- Import the localization files and confirm the changes.
- Perform additional localization steps yourself.
The good news is that TraductoPro automates this step for you. It can import your interface and code strings automatically.
Test Your App
Test your internationalized app, using a variety of techniques, during development and after localization.
Before you localize your app:
- In Interface Builder, preview the user interface using pseudolanguages.
- Run the app using different pseudolanguages.
After you import localizations:
- In Interface Builder, preview the localizations.
- Run the app with options that detect non-localized text.
- Run the app using all supported languages and regions.
- Ask native-language speakers to test the app.