In March 2010, Google offered an ability to automatically create captions on YouTube videos, "since then auto-captions have been generated on nearly 40 million videos, and the number of manually-created caption tracks has more than tripled," revealed Brad Ellis, Product Manager, YouTube Japan.
"We're eager to see more videos captioned in more languages, so we just rolled out this feature to a new language -- Japanese," Ellis said.
"Now on any video with a clear Japanese speech track, a red "CC" button will appear at the bottom of the player, where you can click it to generate automatic captions from the speech."
Ellis said they're also working closely with the the Japan Federation for the Deaf to improve this technology and make it more useful.
Here's an example of how it works from ANN News Channel:
And if you really want to get multilingual with YouTube videos, when these auto-captions are combined with auto-translate feature, you'll be able to generate subtitles into more than 50 languages.
"Google Translate adds real-time machine translation to any caption tracks you upload. To get a translation for your preferred language, move the mouse over the bottom-right arrow, and then over the small triangle next to the CC (or subtitle) icon, to see the captions menu. Click on the "Translate..." button and then you will be given a choice of many different languages.
When you add captions to your video in one language, it'll be readable to almost everybody through auto translate. While machine translation is not perfect, we hope this will help creators to offer you a better understanding of their videos," Google explains.