Multi-language JSON file

Multi-language JSON is a file format which contains translation strings for multiple languages. Save time on managing content by yourself.

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What is multi-language JSON?

Multi-language JSON is one of the most common JSON formats for web applications and software localization programs. It contains translations for many languages, where the first level JSON is a language key or locale. For example, for English, Polish, and German it would contain keys: en_US, pl_PL, de_DE. Each of the language keys contains an object with key-values, where the key is usually a translation key and the values are translations for the corresponding language. A sample file is shown below:

{
  "de_DE": {
    "SALE": "Verkauf",
    "ADDRESS": "Adresse"
  },
  "en_US": {
    "SALE": "Sale",
    "ADDRESS": "Address"
  },
  "pl_PL": {
    "SALE": "Sprzedaż",
    "ADDRESS": "Adres"
  }
}

In some cases, multi-language JSON files can contain additional levels of translation keys, but the rule of thumb is that the first level always contains locales or languages.

{
  "de_DE": {
    "navbar": {
      "title": "Titel",
      "home": "Startseite"
    }
  },
  "en_US": {
    "navbar": {
      "title": "Title",
      "home": "Homepage"
    }
  },
  "pl_PL": {
    "navbar": {
      "title": "Tytuł",
      "home": "Strona główna"
    }
  }
}

When to use multi-language JSON?

Multi-language JSON format is a very elegant way of keeping translations because it's only one file with all translations for all languages. It's commonly used in applications where the translations are loaded once and kept in application memory, or in an application that works on server-side. Thanks to that, client (end-user) never downloads the whole file. The server application returns only a subset of content to the user.

Client-side applications built with ReactJS or VueJS without any additional frameworks like NextJS or NuxtJS usually uses more sophisticated approaches to download translations to the client. One of the ways is to split translations into a multiple files by language.

No matter which type of application you need to translate, you have two options to access translations. One is to host translations on CDN, which offers fast access to translations for your end-users and option to change translations without re-deploying your application.The second option is to include translations with your project bundle, by downloading translations files locally and add them to the application package.

What is translation hosting?

translation hosting process

SimpleLocalize offers a translation hosting service that splits localization files automatically and upload them to the fast server, from which every end-user can freely download translations just for his language. A more sophisticated solution is to split translations even more and use only required translations for certain website. In such case, translations are additionally split by translation namespaces and loaded automatically by i18n plugin.

How to manage translation files locally?

SimpleLocalize also offers an option to upload and download translations thanks to open-source CLI which can be installed on any machine with any operating system including CI/CD sever machines.

Install SimpleLocalize CLI or download it manually.

$ curl -s https://get.simplelocalize.io/2.5/install | bash

Upload your translation files using upload command

$ simplelocalize upload \
        --apiKey YOUR_PROJECT_API_KEY \
        --uploadFormat multi-language-json \
        --uploadPath ./locales/translations.json

After adding new languages or changing translation strings, you can download translation files again to your project files by invoking download command with parameters like below

$ simplelocalize download \
        --apiKey YOUR_PROJECT_API_KEY \
        --uploadFormat multi-language-json \
        --uploadPath ./locales/translations.json

Need help? See our documentation page.

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  • React
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  • Unity
  • Microsoft Teams
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  • JavaScript
  • Angular
  • Ionic
  • GitLab
  • TypeScript
  • Bitbucket
  • TypeScript
  • GitHub
  • i18next
  • Microsoft Teams
  • Discord
  • next-i18next
  • React Native
  • Spring Boot
  • DeepL
  • Swift language
  • Java language
  • Unity
  • Excel
  • Android
  • Jekyll
  • Angular
  • Slack
  • FormatJS
  • Figma
  • iOS
  • GitLab
  • React
  • next-translate
  • NodeJS
  • OpenAI
  • Cloudflare Workers
  • Webhooks
  • FormatJS CLI
  • Ionic
  • Laravel
  • Expo
  • Ruby on Rails
  • Vue
  • Kotlin language
  • Cordova
  • GitHub
  • GatsbyJS
  • JavaScript
  • Google Translate
  • macOS

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