The remote simultaneous interpretation guide: Everything you need to know

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Interpreting is a profession that has been around for centuries. The interpreters listen to the source language, translate it in their heads, and then communicate the message in the target language to a group of people.

Interpreters can interpret in real-time or through recorded media. In either case, interpretation is an art form that takes years of practice and training to master, especially when it comes to remote interpreting.

Ready to learn more about remote simultaneous interpretation? Let's get started!

What is remote simultaneous interpreting (RSI)?

Remote simultaneous interpretation is a process of transforming spoken or signed speech from one language to another in a matter of milliseconds. In RSI, this process can happen despite the physical distance between the speaker and interpreter, even if they are on different continents.

But to understand it from a deeper perspective, let's talk about simultaneous interpreting first, which is also known as conference interpreting. In short, it is an oral translation of the speech. However, keep in mind that there is no such thing as simultaneous translation.

We might say that the interpreter translates the source language and transforms it into the target language of the audience. But what actually happens is that we simultaneously interpret the meaning, just in another language.

So if someone is talking about simultaneous translation, they probably have simultaneous interpretation in mind!

Remote simultaneous interpretation (RSI) is becoming increasingly popular in online and hybrid meetings. They introduce a new variable to communication in governmental institutions (such as United Nations!), corporate companies, and even non-profit organizations.

RSI allows simultaneous interpreters, participants, and speakers to connect remotely from any place on Earth and interact in their own language, thus breaking the language barriers. All users can receive a live video & audio feed virtually.

All you need to make remote simultaneous interpretation technology work is a phone or a laptop, a headset, and an Internet connection to join the meeting.

Remote simultaneous interpretation services can come in handy when organizing your next virtual multilingual event, so let's learn more about the way interpreters work and what are the advantages of RSI.

How do remote simultaneous interpreters work?

To provide a professional remote simultaneous interpretation service, you can use some of the specific aspects of RSI. Explore the features below to understand the way interpreters work.

You can work remotely anywhere in the world

Fully remote events eliminate the need to use hardware conferencing equipment. It means that event organizers can connect such things as FM systems, stationary or table transmitters, and personal wireless receivers to a digital world.

After putting their headset on, the interpreter listens to the speaker and delivers their speech in another language simultaneously as they speak, in a similar register and tone. However, it is not as simple as it sounds: the whole process requires a lot of experience and skills.

But keep this in mind: remote simultaneous interpreters can work from home or any location of their choice. Imagine two interpreters: one interpreter has to travel to a distant place, understand its logistics, and quickly get to the event.  Another interpreter works remotely, has more time to prepare for the event, and doesn't have to rush anywhere. Probably, the second one will feel less stress, but they can provide equally accurate interpretation no matter where they are.

It is now up to you to decide where your soundproof booth is – on-site or in your room!

You must have a perfect audio quality

Ensure crystal clear sound with a quality headset and microphone. Your location is also significant. Better audio depends on sound-isolated rooms in a quiet environment with no distractions.

Wondering how to achieve high audio quality as we speak? Read Top 8 tips for interpreters you can't miss.

You should choose a remote simultaneous interpretation solution that suits your needs best

Check the ratings, read success stories, get a quote, ask for a demo, do it all. Also, check if the user interface works for you and features of the platform are relevant for your event. If you know that you want to conduct live polls with your audience, search for remote simultaneous software with a voting system. If chats are essential for you, don't forget to check for this feature.

A remote simultaneous interpretation system like Interactio can make virtual, hybrid, and on-site multilingual events happen and thrive, assisting you from the preparation stage till the last minute of your event.

What are the advantages of remote simultaneous interpretation?

Remote simultaneous interpreting has solved a lot of issues till now. While many recognized the advantages of virtual solutions with the rise of the pandemic, the bigger picture shows many other benefits of using remote simultaneous interpretation:

Event organizers

There are 3 main groups of people for whom RSI can be highly beneficial. Let's start with the advantages for event organizers – they are usually the first ones that get to comprehend the idea of the upcoming events.

A wide spectrum of assistance in one place

RSI platforms enable you to organize a flawless, secure, and easily accessible multilingual event on any scale, both online and offline. RSI offers a more flexible setup of your choice: entirely virtual or hybrid with some interpreters working in booths and remotely at the same time. Remote simultaneous interpreting also comes with live statistics, dedicated technicians, intuitive design, event recordings, and more.

Inclusivity for everyone

In a global world, the ability to engage a diverse audience in an online or hybrid setting is the key to success. Remote simultaneous interpretation software helps you connect to your listeners regardless of the location with the power of interpretation. Live polls, surveys, and chat discussions are also there to help!

Imagine all of these tools in virtual conferences, where your audience can sit, relax, and fully understand all of the presentations. From now on, you can listen to every speech with ease, and it doesn't matter which language the speaker is talking in: no dictionary is needed!

High scalability

Choosing a venue with enough space for interpretation booths and accommodating large audiences (we're talking thousands of people) can be stressful. Within the concept of remote simultaneous interpretation platforms, thousands of people can enjoy their favorite events online. All the participants need is a device to run a simple yet powerful RSI application and a stable Internet connection.


RSI providers continuously focus on interpreters, trying to make the whole interpretation process flawless. Let's see how interpreters can benefit from remote applications.

Dedicated support and fewer technical issues to worry about

Remote simultaneous platforms like Interactio support interpreters every step of the way. Dedicated technical support during the event, flexibility in choosing assignments, and an easy billing process are just a few of the benefits.

Less time wasted on logistics & more time spent on interpreting

Previously, traveling to different countries required every simultaneous interpreter to quickly adapt to entirely different cultures and surroundings. Instead of wasting your time booking tickets and housing, you can connect with your family and friends. Remote work mode also allows for much more flexibility in choosing your assignments as you can attend several events the same week from the comfort of your home.

Keeping up with industry standards from your home

You can now advance your skills without leaving your favorite spot while gaining continuous experience and expanding your portfolio. RSI platforms attract the most qualified interpreters and do it all to make them succeed.

As a bonus, research has shown that simultaneous interpretation has always been a task that increases your cognitive functions. A simultaneous interpreter might feel some cognitive overload in the short term, but scientific findings behind the brain functions suggest otherwise.  

New connections are initially made in your brain when you attend to dual tasks, like listening and interpreting. This 2016 study suggests that simultaneous interpreters have an advantage on performing dual-tasks, thus multitasking. You might not see the changes immediately, but you're likely to benefit from them in the future!


Listeners are usually the largest group of people in every event, so many advantages of RSI apply to them too. Discover some of the benefits that your participants will definitely enjoy.

The language barrier is gone

Listeners can enjoy the content of the event in their preferred languages. Have you ever tried to Google and translate something in the middle of the speech just to understand it? It usually gets awkward and puts you in a stressful situation. Remote simultaneous interpretation technology has got you covered, and it doesn't matter how many multiple languages you will need in your next online event.

After all, precise and correct communication is vital everywhere, even in small meetings. We will never be able to learn all the languages in the world, machine translation is not accurate enough yet, and we can only rely on interpreters at the moment.

Networking in a virtual world

Remote simultaneous interpretation platforms provide many options to keep all the attendees connected. Enjoy private or public chats, participate in live surveys and see all the other listeners in one place. Looking for a particular person in a vast venue would have taken a lot of time, but now it's only a few clicks away on RSI platforms.

Networking sessions in your mother tongue are much more efficient. Now, if you use simultaneous interpretation, you can give your participants a whole new meaning of online events. Only a few of us have an extensive vocabulary in more than two or three languages, so let's not worry about that anymore.

What is RSI in interpreting?

During traditional simultaneous interpretation (SI),  interpreters are usually physically present in the location of a meeting. Interpreters can work together: each interpreter relies on the other when they need to take a break and hand over the interpretation to another.

However, they must work in the same language pair. Organizers must prepare for the SI process and deploy the necessary infrastructure (soundproof booths) and hardware (from the control unit to the interpreter console and specific details such as a recharging unit).

If you're organizing your first SI event, some equipment pieces might be difficult to understand. For example, there is no such thing as one transmitter: we've previously mentioned table ones (these are stationary transmitters), but have you heard about belt clip transmitters? The rest of the hardware talk is here, so check it out!

And if you're suddenly missing on-site interpreters, virtual solutions will definitely help you in such emergency situations.

Thus, RSI is like a second, improved version of it where everyone can enjoy the process remotely. All you need is an Internet connection, a device compatible with the remote simultaneous interpretation platform, and an event to join and enjoy.

Where can you use remote simultaneous interpretation?

The scope of opportunities for multilingual meetings with remote simultaneous interpreting is immense. Business meetings, webinars, multilingual conferences of any scale, governmental sessions, and even worship nights – basically, anything you want!

Remote simultaneous interpreting use cases also include various formats of events. Whether you are organizing an on-site event, online meeting, or a hybrid conference – it works either way.

By the way, you can integrate remote simultaneous interpretation services with any video-conferencing platform of your choice to enhance usability and accessibility. Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Webex, and many more! Find your integration.

To wrap up

Remote simultaneous interpretation is an advanced and constantly evolving asset for multilingual events. The combination of industry knowledge and the right tools can significantly improve the experience for all participants in the RSI: event organizers, listeners, and interpreters.

For further reading, head over to our Knowledge Base to learn more about all 8 types of interpretation you have to know.

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Published on

Jul 15, 2021

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