HarperCollins has announced that it will be making its Collins Dictionary free for anyone to access from December 31, 2011.
This is the first time that a publisher has made a dictionary available online for free access. The company said that users will be able to access the collinsdictionary.com website from December 31.
The website will allow users to access 120,000 dictionary entries, which will be expanded to 220,000 entries by March next year. Users will also be able to access 350,000 translations of some of the most common English words in 35 languages, Press Association informs.
"We are extremely proud of this new online tool for lovers and users of the English language everywhere. This is part of an ongoing strategy to make Collins' content available to as wide an audience as possible through new digital media," said Alex Brown, head of digital at HarperCollins.
"It's been a privilege to bring together the world's best language specialists and lexicographers with a leading digital agency to create www.collinsdictionary.com." he added.
The online dictionary will also come with around a million audio pronunciations of English words and dictionary entries will be accompanied by photos from Flickr, in order to help people understand what exactly a word means.