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Trados's biggest competitor, MemoQ

Last week, we had a quick dip into the world of Trados. The comments ignited and a lot of you seemed incensed that I had started with their nemesis. So for all out there who are indecisive about choosing one of the two “giants”, here are a few words about memoQ, the CAT tool that is set to dethrone good old annoying Studio.

Why translators love it:

memoQ is a tool that was initially developed in 2005 by Kilgray and marketed as the software that has all the functionalities of the market leaders, with none of the nasty little bugs. It was also the first to market its compatibility with the proprietary file formats used by Trados Studio and STAR Transit (later Transit NXT). It was also the first to allow for importing of reviewed documents to update the translation memory. At the time, it was also cheaper.

Nowadays, it still has a few advantages over Trados. If an agency or client has a licence for freelancers, then said language professionals don’t have to buy their own licence for the tool. Without a licence, though, you can’t work on your own projects. The full memoQ translator pro version is a great tool. The interface is modern and flexible, with a live preview pane and TM results shown in the same pane as the terminology. What makes the difference for a lot of us, is that memoQ developers truly take into account user feedback for future versions of the software.

What translators don’t like:

There’s little translators who use memoQ don’t like about memoQ. It can lack intuitively for translators accustomed to other tools. Function-wise, users complain that it’s sometimes cumbersome and requires high processing power for translating large files. Complex Excel files seem to need to be cleaned up after translating. Various projects can’t be opened at the same time in all versions.It’s also costly and like Trados, only works on Windows.

My personal opinion: I couldn’t get used to the interface and the keyboard shortcuts were cumbersome. I expect if I gave it time and patience, I’d get used to it.

I used memoQ years ago when I couldn’t afford Trados (since then, it’s become more expensive), and again more recently with a client’s limited licence. I think a step learning curve and some dedication from the makers to better support and simpler settings would make me switch from Trados, but not quite yet.

Have you used or do you use memoQ? Do you have a complete licence or do you connect from client projects?

What are your personal pros and cons?



Image credits: memoQ

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