August 2, 2017

Welcome to Japanese 4.0 for iOS

Today is the big day! After years of development, we're happy to announce Japanese 4.0.

Rewritten from the ground up, Japanese is now better than ever. We've updated all of our best-loved features and added new features that'll help you take your Japanese learning to the next level.

Faster & More Accurate

We’ve taken huge steps in improving Japanese's search engine. Perhaps the biggest leap forward is our new Handwriting Recognition software, which allows you to draw any kanji in any order and have it recognised by the app. We've got it pegged at about 99.3% accuracy at the moment, but as more and more users make use of the new software, that accuracy will go up and up.

We’ve also added a text reader tool, where you can input text copied from messages, emails, the internet etc. and have Japanese display the kanji readings in furigana. Each word links back to its dictionary entry so that you can translate the text quickly and accurately and add any unknown words to your study lists.

Intuitive and Easy to Use

Japanese's study system has also been improved. The flashcard system has been redesigned and upgraded, making it more intuitive and useful. We also upgraded the SRS study algorithm study algorithm behind it and it is now based on the famous Anki algorithm. However, we’ve made changes to the code, gearing the platform to those learning the Japanese language.

Across the board, Japanese has become even more intuitive to use. With an all new user interface and the inclusion of Split View for large screen Apple devices, you can now look up definitions while you surf the Internet, without ever having to switch apps. We think this is the best version of Japanese yet.

Constantly Improving

To make sure the app is always the best version of what it can be, users can now submit feedback/report errors on definitions and examples, and we will forward this feedback to the relevant sources: JMdict for definitions and for examples sentences. We hope you enjoy all the new features! We hope you enjoy the update, and the access to new features! To see a more comprehensive list, please visit our features page.

As ever, thanks for using the Japanese App, and for sending in your suggestions for updating and improving the app.

- The Japanese Team

July 19, 2017

Version 1.7 for Android

Today we’re pleased to announce the launch of Japanese 1.7 for Android. This update brings the Android version of Japanese closer to the iOS version and is free for all users.

The main changes can be found in the reference section. JLPT lists (N5 - N1) have been added, meaning that you can study the words you need for those taxing proficiency tests.

We’ve also added words by parts of speech and by classification, alongside a list of kanji that can be found in each level of the notorious Kanji Kentei and classifications of kanji by school year.

For those needed to refresh or relearn their kana, we’ve added a kana library, allowing you to quickly and easily check basic kana before moving on to kanji.

We’ve also made several minor bug fixes and changes under the hood that should speed up the running of the app.

Thank you for your continued use of Japanese for Android and as always, we welcome your feedback,

- The Japanese App Team

September 26, 2016

Version 1.6 for Android

Welcome to version 1.6 of Japanese for Android. It's another big release that takes the Android app ever closer in functionality to the iOS app.

New features include:

  • Search from other apps: You can now directly search for words from another app in Japanese. Just highlight the desired search term and use the 'Share' button to look up the term in Japanese.
  • Component keyboard: The component keyboard design has been updated to make it more intuitive to use.
  • Flashcards: Several improvements have been made to the flashcard sections including language direction selection (Japanese → English, English → Japanese), the ability to shuffle lists and enhanced display options.

We hope you enjoy the new features in version 1.6. Thank you for using Japanese for Android

- The Japanese App Team

December 11, 2015

Version 1.5 for Android

Today is the day we release version 1.5 of Japanese. In this update, we introduce flashcards to the Android version, giving you an easy and effective method to study new vocabulary.

We've also added the ability to share your lists with friends/family/study buddies, allowing you to show off your killer lists to the world.

Thank you for using Japanese and good luck with your future studies! Please get in touch with any suggestions for improvements to the app, we're always looking to improve the Japanese language learning experience.

- The Japanese App Team

November 19, 2015

Version 1.4 for Android

Today, we launch version 1.4 of Japanese for Android, along with a whole raft of new features that'll help improve your Japanese learning.

New features include:

  • ‍Text-to-speech: Click on a word to hear its pronunciation using Android voice software.
  • Advanced Input Methods: Search for words by their radicals or by using SKIP notation.
  • Open to Search: This feature has been added as an option to the app. When turned on, the app will automatically open to the search menu.

As ever, thanks for using Japanese for Android!

- The Japanese App Team

November 6, 2015

Japanese Partners with Kai Language School

We are pleased to be working with Kai Language School to provide Japanese on their Digital Learn System (DLS).

About Kai

Kai Language School is based in Shinjuku in Tokyo and was founded in 1987. The school welcomes everyone, from beginners to advanced Japanese learners and has a range of courses lasting up to 9 months.

Digital Learning

In 2016, Kai Japanese Language School launched their Digital Learning System (DLS), giving each and every student the opportunity to study Japanese on iPads provided by the school.

200 iPads

Their new digital ecosystem includes a copy of Japanese on each of their 200 iPads, giving students access to our comprehensive dictionary and flash card study system.

Because Japanese works completely offline, students can use the app wherever they go during their studies, look up words on the fly, and get the most out of their Japanese language experience.

You can see Japanese in action at Kai Language School in the video below:

October 30, 2015

Version 1.3 for Android

We're pleased to release version 1.3 of Japanese for Android today. New features include:

  • ‍Clear History Logs: You can now delete your search history to clear up the feed for new words.
  • Labels: This iOS feature has now been added to Japanese for Android, allowing you to annotate and highlight words with labels.
  • Kana References: We've now added references for kana, allowing you to quickly access their readings.

Thanks for using Japanese for Android, we hope you enjoy using it and it's helping you to master the language!  

- The Japanese App Team

October 16, 2015

Version 1.2 for Android

Version 1.2 of Japanese for Android is a bug fix release which should get rid of some of the more pesky bugs that caused the app to run slow or crash.

Thank you for your bug reports, let us know if you find any more issues with the app.  

- The Japanese App Team

October 14, 2015

Version 1.1 for Android

Today sees the release of version 1.1 of Japanese, building on the features released in version 1.0. Included in this update are several features that bring the Android version closer in functionality to the iOS version:

  • ‍Folders: Lists can now be organised into folders so that you can easily manage your learning process.
  • Import of iOS data: An update much requested by our users, this allows all those who were previously using the Japanese on iOS to import their iOS data to the Android app. This allows you to access the same lists, notes etc. on both devices. To import data, just open the Japanese file from your File Manager or Mail application and choose which data to import.

Thanks as ever for using Japanese for Android, and keep your suggestions coming!

- The Japanese App Team

October 3, 2015

Version 1.0 for Android

Today we're happy to announce Japanese's release on Android!

Here's what's included in version 1.0 of Japanese for Android:  

  • Search: In version 1.0, you can search our extensive Japanese dictionary. Search history is logged so you can easily find your recently visited words and, from the search menu, you can create lists to help you group vocabulary that you want to learn.
  • Themes: Japanese for Android launches with several themes, allowing you to customise the application's look.
  • Romaji: Struggling to learn katakana and hiragana? Then turn on romaji to get you through the transitional phase. This option will show you the latinised readings of the words you are studying.

Let us know what you think of the first release! We're really pleased to finally be able to offer Japanese to our Android fans.  

Suggestions and feedback is always welcome, so don't hesitate to get in touch if you have ideas for improving the app!

- The Japanese App Team

October 2, 2014

Version 3.4 for iOS

Today we released version 3.4 of Japanese. In version 3.4 of Japanese, we've optimised the app for the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 and added the ability to import lists from an even greater selection of apps, including imiwa? and Midori. These lists can be imported and shared through iOS 8's new AirDrop feature.

We've also added 1164 new entries and updated 6447 existing dictionary entries.

Please be aware: this version of Japanese requires iOS 8.

Once again, thanks for your ongoing support and for sending us ideas on how to improve the app,  

- The Japanese App Team

March 26, 2014

Version 3.3 for iOS

Today we released version 3.3 of Japanese. Thanks for all your kind feedback in response to the last update, we've been working hard to incorporate some of the many features that you've suggested.

New features include:  

  • ‍An updated UI for iOS 7 - say goodbye to skeuomorphisms!  
  • The ability to listen to the pronunciations of words using iOS 7's new Siri feature - just click on the word to hear how it is pronounced  
  • Increases to the size of the handwriting keyboard, making it easier  to draw characters  
  • 732 new words and 1884 updated definitions  
  • Links to our Facebook Page  
  • Bug fixes to stop the search bar disappearing when Japanese is used on iOS 7.1.

Enjoy the update, and thank you for your continued support,  

- The Japanese App Team

May 14, 2013

Version 3.2 for iOS

Version 3.2 of Japanese is out today and is packed with a bunch of new features and a number of bug fixes.

New features include:

  • ‍An updated handwriting recognition keyboard  
  • Flashcard order options: SRS, linear or random  
  • The return of lexical categories (adjectives, verbs, nouns etc.)  
  • The ability to tap the headword or 'Show Entry' to display the current flashcard entry  
  • The ability to display notes and word transitivity information on flashcards  
  • The option to hide the English translations of example sentences on flashcards  
  • A separate switch for romaji on flashcards  
  • Reference for each word and kanji that appears in the JLPT  
  • The japanese://jlpt/ URL scheme.

Besides these features we've added 2621 new entries and updated 3196 existing entries.

Thank you for your continued support and suggestions for new features and improvements,  

- The Japanese App Team.

November 28, 2012

Version 3.1 for iOS

Today, we've released version 3.1 of Japanese, which includes a number of new features, including:  

  • Support for the iPhone 5 and iOS 6    
  • Unlimited flashcard study  
  • The ability to mark all cards as learned by tapping the progress chart  
  • A study progress indicator at the top of the flashcards  
  • The ability to  undo the last stroke instead of deleting the whole drawing when using the handwriting system.  
  • Japanese will now remember the last selected JLPT level

We've also fixed a load of bugs with the App, including:  

  • A bug that caused incorrect display of long text when using flashcards  
  • A bug that caused words such 天邪鬼 to display incorrectly  
  • Fixed Hepburn Romaji 
  • Fixed example sentences  
  • Other bug fixes

Thanks as ever for using Japanese and submitting your suggestions,

- The Japanese App Team

May 30, 2012

Welcome to Japanese 3.0 for iOS

Today is the biggest update to the Japanese app since version 2.0 was released way back in 2009. The team has expanded, and we're pleased to announce feature after feature after feature that'll take your Japanese learning to the next level!

All New UI

Let's start with the user interface: Japanese 3.0 introduces compatibility with the iPad, and the app will run at full resolution and full screen on both your iPad and iPhone. We've also improved functionality on the iPhone so that you can use the app in landscape mode, improving the ability to draw kanji and the general functionality of the app.

A Smarter Way to Search

Talking of drawing kanji, we take a big leap forward in this version with the introduction of an integrated handwriting system; you no longer need to rely on the iOS keyboard.

We've improved the search engine, decluttering the whole thing and making it more tailored to your needs, presenting the most obvious and useful kanji first. We've also improved the data for kanji component searches. Furthermore, frequently used characters are now highlighted, which makes them easier to find.

For those new to the Japanese language, word readings (a.k.a romaji) are now available for all dictionary entries, including kanji.

A Better Way to Study

The study feature has been improved tenfold and we have incorporated a completely new flashcard study system based on your feedback. The SRS scheduling algorithm used in previous versions has been completely rewritten to better schedule repetitions and we have updated the JLPT lists. In version 3.0 we have finally released a vocabulary list for JLPT Level 3 and we have updated the vocab in the lists we already had.  

Make it Social!

New social features allow you to share the lists you've made with friends, family, colleagues, enemies, pets et cetera. You can also import lists from other Japanese language tools such as Rikaichan and Midori.

For the full list of updates in this version, see the release notes in the App Store, there're plenty more not included in this blog post.

As ever, thanks for using the Japanese App, and thank you for sending in your suggestions for updating and improving the app.

- The Japanese App Team

August 9, 2010

Version 2.3 for iOS

Good morning!

It's been almost half a year since the last update. Time flies!

In version 2.3 I've added support for iOS 4, optimising the app's graphics for the iPhone's new retina displays, and allowing the app to make full use of the new multitasking feature.

Other improvements to the app include the addition of transitivity pairs, allowing you to switch quickly between the transitive and intransitive form of each verb.

Lists have been greatly improved, and you can now add folders to your vocabulary lists. I've also added a feature that lets you search inside lists.

Finally, following some recoding, scrolling inside the entry detail view should be much smoother and I've ironed out a few pesky bugs that caused the app to crash midflow.

Keep the ideas coming, as ever,  

- Mark

February 25, 2010

Version 2.2 for iOS

Good morning all!

I'm announcing the release of version 2.2 of Japanese. I've added a few more features based on your suggestions, keep them coming in!

When looking at a headword in the dictionary mode, you'll notice that furigana now appears above the word, helping with the reading of unknown kanji.

I've also added a feature that allows you to discover compounds of the kanji simply by tapping on the kanji.

Finally, I've made adjustments to the SKIP results section so that they are sorted in the same way as the Kanji Learners Dictionary, which should make going between the two a whole lot easier.

Till the next update,  


December 5, 2009

Version 2.1 for iOS

Version 2.1 of Japanese is out today, with several big changes.

I've made improvements to the flashcard learning tool, including the incorporation of lists for JLPT Levels 1 and 2. The algorithm for scheduling flashcards has been updated, and I've also added a feature to randomize the flashcards.

The vocabulary lists have also been updated and to improve functionality I've added a copy-and-paste option (touch and hold your finger on the list) for lists. You now have the ability to import lists by pasting and lists can now be sorted.

I've also revamped the entry display field, so that it shows the components of compound verbs and highlights which nouns can take the auxiliary verb する.  

Also included in version 2.1 are a number of minor bugfixes, and additions to the settings menu, allowing you to customise the app to suit your needs.

Enjoy the updates!

- Mark

September 9, 2009

Welcome to Japanese 2.0 for iOS

It's been almost a year since I launched Japanese version 1.0 and the response has been phenomenal. Thank you so much for your support!

I'm pleased to announce a bunch of new features based on your suggestions for improving the app. Let me run you through some of them.

User-Suggested Features

One of the most common requests was for example sentences so, with version 2.0, I've incorporated over 70,000 example sentences into the app, with links to each dictionary definition. There's also the option to have furigana or romaji displayed above words, to help with the readings of kanji.

Even More Useful

Talking of kanji, you can now search for kanji by component (i.e. 明 ➔ 日 + 月). This feature is available for over 11,000 kanji, and should make the search feature much more functional.

I've also added stroke order animations for each kanji to help users learn how to draw kanji without the need of a Japanese teacher or textbook.

Study With Flashcards

Version 2.0 also introduces a flashcard-based learning system. I'm really pleased with this system and it should help with the your ability to learn and test your Japanese. The flashcard system works with lists to create decks of kanji flashcards from which you can practice.

The kanji entries have been updated to include alternate readings, etymology, transitivity, components, conjugations and compounds, as well as dictionary codes for each kanji.

Keep 'Em Coming!

Let me know how you get on with the new features and whether they meet your needs. I'm always open to your ideas for improvement.

Thanks again for all your support!

- Mark

September 16, 2008

Welcome To Japanese

Good morning! Today Apple released its brand new App Store and with it comes Japanese, the first Japanese dictionary app for iPhone.

A New Dictionary for New Times

When the first iPhone came out, I saw its potential as a study tool, and I began developing the first ideas for the Japanese App.

The app was born out of my own needs as a Japanese learner. I was an exchange student at Oita University on the Japanese island of Kyushu and I wanted something better than the super expensive Casio Word Tank dictionaries.

I had already started on the prototype when, three months ago, Apple announced that they would be launching the App Store, allowing iPhone users to properly develop and release their own apps.

Three crazy months of coding later and I'm pleased to announce the launch of Japanese, the first Japanese dictionary app for iPhone.

Designed for Japanese Learners by a Japanese Learner

I designed it to meet my own needs as a Japanese learner, and I hope you'll find it as useful an aid in your Japanese studies as I do.

I'm planning to keep improving the app, so please send in your suggestions. I'll incorporate the best ideas into the app and together we'll create the most useful Japanese language learning tool around.

Finally, I want to offer my thanks to Professor Jim Breen of Monash University. He's the man who compiled the JMdict database, the underlying framework on which this app is based.

- Mark

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