Best Apps For Learning Japanese For Android And iPhone [Update 2023]

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Learning Japanese (日本語, Nihongo) may seem hard, but not with a good teacher. Even more comfortable if you have access to your teacher or sensei at your ease. Whenever you want, and from wherever, you will get the solution instantly.

Now, to your wonder, having a sensei as such is not only possible but also very easy. You can do it with a few clicks. Yes, I am talking about the best apps for learning Japanese, of course. With those best apps, learning this East Asian language has never been easy.

A language that is spoken by around 128 million people. Hence, if you are thinking of downloading such an app, probably this is the article you are looking for! An item with a list of all the great apps to choose from.

So, without further delay, let’s get started!

What Makes An Excellent Japanese Learning App?

There are some essential features every good learning app should have. It comes with features like user interactivity, proper explanation with lots of examples, audio-visual content, self-testing option, etc. So, when it comes to learning Japanese, that’s not all we can share. The app needs to have a little more than that.

You see, Japanese is a unique language in many ways. Along with the spoken form, a good app should focus on its two main ways of writing. The syllabic writing “Kana” (again having two types, “Hiragana & Katakana”). Similarly, a writing system using Chinese characters “Kanji.”

Japanese is a self normed distinctive language. Often, several general methods that are fine for other prominent words will not go with Japanese. Good apps for learning Japanese do apprehend this and are designed accordingly.

12 Best Apps For Learning Japanese Language Reviews 2021

Now that we are all set let’s dive right into the list of apps. We will take a brief look at each one of them. So, let’s go ahead and find the best Japanese learning app for you.


1. AnkiDroid Flashcards

One of the best ways of learning anything is repetition. Especially if it’s a language. It’s even more valid for the one that requires a bit more attention like Japanese. AnkiDroid Flashcards, the first app in our list, provides just that. It lets you create your flashcards. Then you can use them repeatedly. You can create those with text, images, sounds, or LaTex. On top of that, there are more than 6000 batches or decks of cards readily available for download on numerous topics.

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1 AnkiDroid Flashcards

Another cool feature that makes this app most effective is it does not let you forget. Using its two super algorithms, it keeps on showing your previous cards. Those cards that you may haven’t opened in a while. So, you can learn very quickly with it and then do not forget. So useful, right? Definitely, yes, and it would be wise to give it a try.

Why you use this app?

The main reason for using AnkiDroid is it is best for memorizing anything. Along with huge 6000+ card decks, the text-to-speech integration will surprise you. Besides detailed progress statistics, whiteboard, AnkiWeb synchronization, integrated dictionary, more features come with this great app.

2. HiNative [Q&A App for Language Learning]

The second app in our list is HiNative. It’s a community focused on learning different languages. They have more than 5 million users from all around the world. The users not only get support; at the same time, they provide it too. Including Japanese, you can query on almost any other language here. A simple but fantastic fact in this regard is auto-translation. When you ask something to others, they see it translated to their native language.

2 HiNative - Q&A App for Language Learning

So, for such a large community, in most cases, chances are your answer is already there. If not, then there will always be someone you will get the answer form. One who is native to that language and the best part is it’s all for free. Support is available for over 110 languages and counting. After all, lots of learners are joining every day. Thus increasing the support as well.

Why you use this app?

It is the number one of the top app for learning a language online. With 2 million+ registered users, it was on Google play store’s 2017 best list. You can upload audio to check pronunciation, picture of your unsure piece of writing, and many more.

3. Japanese

Are you looking for a dictionary type app that is English to Japanese and vice versa? Then you may want to check out the Japanese app that is third in our list. Because it’s not just any other dictionary in this regard. With over 174,650 entries, it’s a vast one. Nonetheless, it gets into your android device with dalliance. You also can add notes to the listings. That’s not all. The Japanese dictionary app also contains over 52,000 examples. It’s undoubtedly more than you bargained for.

3 Japanese

In addition to the enormous entries and examples, the Japanese provide kanji animations. The order of every stroke of each kanji is adequately maintained in the animations. It makes this app a complete learning package with the kana(s) & kanji. Once you download the app, you are good to go. No further internet connection is needed as it runs fully offline. You can even make your particular chart of vocabulary.

Why you use this app?

In terms of apps for learning Japanese, it’s a must. A comprehensive yet lightweight dictionary in your device. With a speedy loading time, you can search your desired translation at ease. With regular updates, it’s one of the best free apps you can get.

4. Kanji Recognizer

The Kanji Recognizer app is a one-stop solution for all your kanji learning needs. This app is all about kanji. Kanji is a unique symbolic form of writing Japanese using the Chinese alphabet. So, usually, it is the final writing part after kana. You may be struggling with it too. If its the case, then this is the app for you. It provides you with a virtual blackboard for kanji writing practice.

4 Kanji Recognizer

You can directly write kanji on it using your fingertip. You can choose the quiz mode to test yourself. Using an animated diagram, you can check your strokes. The app works fine with both online and offline. First, you follow the training mode. Then you can train yourself in this mode. Stroke guidelines also can be used if needed. Only after you complete one kanji writing then proceeds to the next.

Why you use this app?

For practicing kanji writing anytime and anywhere, you can use Kanji Recognizer. With training and quiz mode, it makes your learning simple but effective. Like other features, including table support, ordered stroke animation, automatic search for immediate feedback, etc. it has more benefits that may attract you to use this app.

5. Google Translate

At number 5th in our list is Google translator. As it’s an app from Google, there is no question on quality. Chances are it’s already installed in your device, and you previously used it. For translating one language to another, it’s matchless. So, no wonder this familiar app is also on our list. Though the UI experience can be improved, it does best what it is supposed to, translating with optimal accuracy.

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5 Google Translate

You can translate 88 languages only by pointing your camera to it. It works with 50 words from photos. Will you believe 95 languages can be translated by drawing on the screen! On top of everything, you can even translate a conversation that is bilingual in real-time. And that is in 43 languages. So to translate Japanese from most other languages, it is an excellent recommendation. Then there is also syncing over all your devices.

Why you use this app?

When it comes to translating a text of anything, it is the most trusted app. You can translate between 103 languages, including Japanese, online in typed text, and 59 languages offline. Other than that Instant camera, photo, conversation, handwriting translation available as mentioned.

6. Duolingo [Learn Languages Free]

The main four aspects of thoroughly learning a language are listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Looking for an app to learn Japanese that covers them all? Then Duolingo, the free language learning app, is your ultimate solution. Designed by experts, this reliable learning app provides you interactive, game & fun like lessons. It aims for you to have a robust and long-lasting capacity over the language you are learning.

6 Duolingo

You can prepare yourself for real conversations in Japanese with this. It follows proven scientific methods for teaching you the language. You can trace your progress level, too. It will encourage and guide you to give more effort. With new goals and playful achievements, your learning will continue. Whatever the reason you are learning your desired language, Duolingo takes it very seriously. Hence, with the Editor’s Choice badge in Google play, it provides the best complete learning experience.

Why you use this app?

It’s one of the highest downloaded educational apps around the world. It indicates it is very much useful. With lessons in all four significant language aspects, it’s a community of 300+ million language learners. Therefore, it would be a wise decision to join them.

7. Learn Japanese Phrases [Japanese Translator]

Another exciting app you may want to check out is the Learn Japanese Phrases. As the name suggests, it is about different Japanese phrases. You will learn phrases for greetings to everyday use. Phrases that will help you depending on various circumstances. With just a single tap, it provides pronunciation too. So, there will not be any confusion regarding that. Native pronunciation also enables you to be confident while you talk.

7 Learn Japanese Phrases

Apart from that, you can use it as a quick fix if you are on a visit to Japan. It gives you the ease of use with the control of fast and slow play. So, you can learn by listening right and repeating. You can play the right phrases in a situation of your need. It will remove the language barrier and give you a pleasant, smooth experience.

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Why you use this app?

The Learn Japanese Phrases provides Japanese phrases; those are most useful. Native speaker’s pronunciation makes it extremely effective. In offline mode and quick search options, this simple app enables you to have a clear idea and confidence with the Japanese language.

8. Learning Japanese

Learning grammar properly is crucial for language proficiency in the long run. Though many a time a lot of apps missing on that part but not the learning Japanese app. It is focused on basic Japanese grammar as well as on some essential elements too. You can also learn some advanced topics like volitional, formal expressions, and more. All the learning materials are carefully designed and put in an order that is centered on easing the users.

8 Learning Japanese

It focuses on learning, especially in a sensible way, in terms of the unique Japanese norm. You will be able to learn grammar systematically. If you are aiming for a long term solid teaching them, this might be the right app for you. It tries to teach you naturally in an easily understandable way.

Why you use this app?

The foremost reason for you to use this app is Japanese grammar. From Basic to most essential concepts like verbs and the necessary grammatical use of conditionals, it takes you through all. Additionally, with the whole Japanese writing system, you may want to have this app for some advanced learnings.

9. Doongle [Where your global journey begins]

The natural way of learning a language is by living among the people. You grow up with them. Share and care for them. It is how the whole language connection and communication gets built. The Doongle app tries to provide you that same way & experience of learning. It connects you with a community of over 1,000,000 from 118 countries around the world.

9 Doongle

You can bypass all the hazards of memorization and grammatical rules with this app. Just simply connect with fellow doonglers from Japan. Start sharing and caring, simply learn from each other. Doongle is the ideal platform for all of this. It makes you a part of a trustworthy community. Connect you with people, you get a real-time answer and beyond.

Why you use this app?

Doongle is like a global journey. Here you learn from the community as a whole. You start queries, get to know people of your interest using the story filter of the app. As you go with mutual share and care, you learn along the way through the real-time translation of doongle.

10. Kana [Hiragana & Katakana]

Kana is an app that is all about the topic with the same name, kana. It is the Japanese alphabet. They are divided into Hiragana and Katakana. The app covers everything you may need to know about them. It focuses on reading them as well as teaches you how to write them. With an in-depth but easy, organized way, the app presents the topics chapter by chapter.

10 Kana

In each of the chapters first, you learn the basic concepts and then practice. That gives the whole learning process an excellent start. Then there are quizzes for self-evaluation. Also, flashcards for easy review. To help you truly connect and understand the topics, it presents you it provides you history and usage.

Why you use this app?

It provides you with the entire coverage of both the kana(s). You will have interactive, well-designed lessons with flashcards and quizzes. Also, audio examples, stroke diagrams, and different ways of testing your progress.

11. Pokekoro: Pocket Colony

[Pocketcolony Let’s dress up cute avatars! A cute avatar dress-up game to enjoy with friends]

Pokekoro or Pocket Colony is a famous fashion dress-up game in Japan. If you’re looking for fun ways to learn Japanese, then you might take a look at this game. In this app, you get an avatar that you have to dress-up. You can take a look at already available 40,000+ costumes and items. Or, you can create your fashion sense. In this virtual world, you can even redesign your room. Hence, you can have fun and learn Japanese at the same time.

11 ポケコロ かわいいアバターをお洒落に着せ替えよう!ともだちと楽しむかわいいアバター着せ替えゲーム

Another main feature that effectively enables you to learn more is its chatting option among fellow gamers. You can grow your little circle of friends here within this game. You can talk, share your ideas or avatars. Thus, you get more into it and, through more interaction, keep on learning.

Why you use this app?

The primary appeal of Pokekoro is passive learning. It gives you an environment where you play and also learns Japanese along the way. You make and interact with friends while sometimes learning without even realizing it.

12. Ameba

The last and final entry in our list is the Ameba app. It’s a blogging site based on Japan. Likewise, all the content on the app and the web are in Japanese. So, it can help you to a great extent to learn Japanese. You can get in touch with the blogs you like. Try and read something every day to stay in practice. It is also an excellent platform for meeting native Japanese people. You may find some good native friends here.

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12 Ameba

When you are confident and comfortable enough, you can even start your blog in Japanese. We will also be more exposed to the social norms of Japan. It may substantially help you to connect with the language itself.

Why you use this app?

The primary purpose for which you may want to use this app could interact on an advanced level. It will help you sharpen your Japanese language skills. You will be able to connect with the language in a better way.


Can the android / IOS app be for help to learn the Japanese language?

If you have an android or IOS device and can access one of those great learning apps, the answer is yes. Japanese learning apps for iPhone or Android can be of help to learn the language. There are many similar apps available on both platforms.

Are all apps free?

No, not all the apps are free of cost. In terms of value, they come in three main categories. Free (usually contains ads), In-app purchases, and the ones that you have to buy. In the in-app purchases apps, some primary features are free. Then you have to buy as you go using the next.

Is the Japanese learning app worth learning?

It depends on you and the app you are using. You can find all kinds of apps for learning Japanese. Of course, they differ in quality. They are designed in different ways to learn different things. Therefore, you have to choose carefully for your particular need, and hopefully, it will be worth it.

Final Thought

Learning the Japanese language takes determination. Infect, it is right in terms of anything, for that matter. Then again, you can make it easy by choosing a learning app. An app from the above list of best apps for learning Japanese.

So, depending on your personal preference, you may choose one, start your journey of learning. Hopefully, you will be speaking in Japanese in no time.

Happy learning!

Professional Tech Content Writter and Developer. He finds his sense of work in Windows software, Andorid Apps, tools, ROMs , Emulator , and what not. Apart from mobile OS, I also enjoys testing softwares for PC. and Testing android software for pc, Windows 7, Windows 10, Xp, Mac, Linux.

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