Naver’s ‘Papago’ Translation App Partners with Stores to Ease Communication Barriers in Korea

South Korea’s Naver Corp. has partnered with convenience store operator GS Retail Co. on the use of a translation app that will allow non-Korean speakers to shop easier by reducing communication barriers.

‘Papago’, which is free for smartphone download, has been available since August of last year. Under the new initiative, it will partner with different organizations whose staff, such as those at the ubiquitous GS25 convenience stores throughout the country, will be trained how to use it to better assist customers.

Naver said Papago’s code is written to go beyond simply breaking down sentences into phrases, but to instead take a holistic approach by seeking to relay the overall context of a conversation.


The app currently provides translation services in Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese, French and Spanish.

Papago signed an agreement with the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency in February to ease their communications channels with non-Korean speakers.

“Papago reflects our strategy to develop smart, easy-to-use services for the public which make use of AI and a simple interface,” said Naver’s chief technology officer Song Chang-hyun in a statement announcing the app. “We will compete with global rivals by continuously improving our AI technology and offering our users more convenient and enjoyable services.”

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