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Butterfly Network:

Translating 75,000 words in 10 days

Adrian Cohn

Adrian Cohn

Director, Brand Strategy and Communications at Smartling

How Butterfly Network leveraged Smartling to rapidly localize their platform in over 10 languages.

Butterfly Network is a first of its kind point of care ultrasound (POCUS) company that has redefined ultrasound technology.

Because it doesn’t utilize ionizing radiation, ultrasound technology has increased in popularity over the last 10-15 years. But because the technology was previously expensive, it limited the number of people who could access it.

Butterfly Network’s founder Jonathan Rothberg wanted to apply his expertise in semiconductor technology to develop a safe, yet accessible imaging device, using ultrasound technology.

The result: Butterfly Network emerged from its cocoon with the first and only handheld ultrasound system built on a semiconductor chip that plugs into a mobile device - all for the cost of $2,000.

Butterfly has been able to deliver a revolutionary experience to people in need while realizing its mission of democratizing medical imaging.

The Challenge: Localize the UI in six weeks

When Brandon Fiegoli, Senior Product Manager at Butterfly Network, was tasked to build out the company’s international footprint, his initial localization strategy was focused on meeting all regulatory requirements, and then slowly expanding localized content to websites, apps, and marketing content to ensure customers had an experience native to their language.

After further investigation, it was clear that he had to pivot the strategy to focus on translating the app user interface prior to the launch. The big obstacle the team had to overcome: There was only six weeks before the committed launch date. Butterfly Network needed a tool or platform that would help them achieve this ambitious goal.

Additionally, the company had other important criteria that needed to be met when considering the right solution, including:

High-Quality Translations

Because Butterfly’s customers are medical professionals, all content that goes out from the company needs to be translated at the highest quality. All info needed to convey all medical information clearly and accurately.

Sophisticated Integrations

Butterfly Network’s ability to frequently update the software for the handheld ultrasound device is a major competitive advantage. To maintain this edge, they needed a platform that could be properly integrated into their complex engineering and product release workflows so they could continue to release software weekly, which is quicker than most companies in the medical device space.

Customer Support

Butterfly’s experience with other translation providers yielded negative results. Poor quality translations, poor communication, and lack of visibility and transparency into the translation process all contributed to the negative experience. The previous language service provider never asked for the tools that would enable Butterfly Network to be successful.

For Butterfly Network, having the right support team was essential for being able to localize their content as quickly and as effectively as possible.

The Solution: Smartling

Impressed with their technical integrations and their outstanding customer service, Brandon was confident that Smartling could help them deliver high-quality translations of their app UI in a very short timeframe.

Utilizing Smartling’s Translation Management tool, Brandon and the Butterfly Network team saw the following benefits:

Acceleration to market

In the first 10 days of using Smartling’s platform, 70,000 words were translated. This enabled Butterfly Network to successfully expand its product into 13 markets in six months. Because Smartling was able to meet every one of these tight deadlines, Butterfly Network was able to commit to rolling out their product to these international markets as promised.

Unlocking a new source of revenue

Prior to translating their UI content, Butterfly Network’s was only able to reach the English speaking market. Once they deployed their localization efforts, their revenue experienced double-digit growth, enabling them to realize an accelerated time to value with the investment in Smartling.

Superior customer support

Smartling’s Customer Engagement team was able to quickly onboard Butterfly Network on building out comprehensive linguistic assets as part of the translation preflight process.

Smartling not only asked for assets, such as style guides and glossaries, but also provided an online portal that made it easy for Butterfly to own those assets and update them frequently.

Partnering with the Smartling customer success and solution architecture teams, Butterfly Network was able to seamlessly integrate with Smartling’s API connections to automatically send and receive translated words efficiently.


What Brandon loves about Smartling’s TMS is the transparency it offers him in the entire localization process. Being able to see the upfront costs is essential for him to factor in his localization budget. And having visibility into the different timelines and workflows for each project allowed his team to prioritize and meet the critical deadlines for the global launch.

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