How Android Localization Works


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Compared to other mobile platforms, the Android SDK provides reasonably extensive support for internationalization. However, this is a fairly complex topic with lots of caveats—and the Android documentation in this area is virtually nonexistent.

Android localization considerations fall into three main categories:

► The languages and locales supported by the Android platform (an extensive list—the superset of all available languages)

► The languages and locales supported by a specific Android handset (a list that varies—a subset of languages chosen by a handset manufacturer or operator)

The countries, languages, and locales supported by the Android Market application (the countries and locales where Google can sell legally; this list grows continuously)

The specific locales supported by Android (as of this writing) are shown in Table 19.1.

TABLE 19.1 Languages and Regions Supported in Android



Chinese (zh)

PRC (zh_CN)

Taiwan (zh_TW)

Czech (cs)

Czech (cs_CZ)

Dutch (nl)

Netherlands (nl_NL)

Belgium (nl_BE)

English (en)

United States (en_US)

Britain (en_GB)

Canada (en_CA)

Australia (en_AU)

New Zealand (en_NZ)

Singapore (en_SG)

French (fr)

France (fr_FR)

Belgium (fr_BE)

Canada (fr_CA)

Switzerland (fr_CH)

German (de)

Germany (de_DE)

Austria (de_AT)

Switzerland (de_CH)

Liechtenstein (de_LI)

Italian (it)

Italy (it_IT)

Switzerland (it_CH)

Japanese (jp)

Japan (jp_JP)

Korean (ko)

South Korea (ko_KR)

Polish (pl)

Poland (pl_PL)

Russian (ru)

Russia (ru_RU)

Spanish (es)

Spain (es_ES)

Did you Know?

The locales are likely to be enhanced. The latest list of locales can be viewed at

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