Japanese learning iOS apps

So I recently switched to iPhone so I was wondering if any of you would have any good iOS Japanese learning tips/apps that I could take a look at, as I’m completely lost.

I found one for Kanji that I had purchased on Android as is kinda of a shame that I have to buy again, but I’ll probably end up doing anyway.


I really like ‘Yomiwa’ for a dictionary: https://www.yomiwa.net/
…and I also really like ‘Tsurukame’ for a WaniKani client (if you use WaniKani): ‎Tsurukame - For WaniKani on the App Store

Hope this helps!


Not exactly an app, but an extension. If you’ve ever used Yomichan, it’s that but for mobile.


Love this one, especially on iPad ! Great for vocab but also isolated kanji. I’m also using ‎Easy Japanese News やさしい日本語ニュース on the App Store

I used previously a lots of apps, like vocab etc, but ended up using the buld-in dictionary …


Are the ads over the top? It looked great until the description mentioned they offer upgrades for purchase

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For a dictionary / flashcard app, I have settled on Nihongo. To me it is just really easy to look up words, create flashcards, add images to the flashcards, and study those flashcards with SRS. They have some recorded audio for some words and (optional) automatic text-to-speech for others. Of course TTS is not perfect, but I find it to be helpful.

One of the great features of the SRS (in my opinion) is that if you miss a day, the SRS does not advance and so you don’t get a huge pile of cards to review. It removes some of the stress of SRS for me.

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I know I’m late to this thread, but here’s a couple apps…

== highly recommend ==
‎imiwa? on the App Store
SRS vocab sorted by frequency…
‎iKnow! on the App Store

== interesting to try out ==
‎Easy Japanese News やさしい日本語ニュース on the App Store
‎JLPT test N1-N5 - Migii on the App Store
‎Bunpo: Learn Japanese on the App Store
‎Skritter: Write Japanese on the App Store

While we’re necroposting :wink:

Other posters have mentioned Yomiwa and Imiwa? as dictionaries. I personally prefer Midori (App Store) for its interface and design—I find it quicker to use if I need to find a word when reading. Features are similar to the other dictionary apps (but no OCR).

Seconding (thirding?) JLPT test N1-N5 - Migii (App Store) and Easy Japanese News やさしい日本語ニュース (App Store) for free practice JLPT tests. There are some mistakes/issues with each, but nothing horrendous. I’m considering buying a short-term subscription for only when I want additional practice tests (there are constantly sales…).

I’ve been using StickyStudy Japanese (App Store) as my main tool for kanji and vocabulary SRS for years. Not free ($10 USD and no in-app purchases) though I found it well worth the price. It has built-in decks for Joyo (old+new)/school grade/JLPT kanji and vocab (by JLPT level) and you can create your own decks as well. The test setup (audio, kana, kanji, english) and the SRS times are completely customizable. Best with (your favourite) kanji dictionary, so YMMV.

I’ve also checked out Bunpo (different from Bunpro!), but I found that the lessons and reviews were a bit underdeveloped.

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Dictionaries App

App by Monokakido where you can purchase lots of different Japanese dictionaries. You can search all your dictionaries at the same time and jump back and forth between them.

Imo, a proper EN-JP/JP-EN dictionary with a lot of examples go a long way in better understanding nuance. If you’re interested in a J-J dictionary, 新明解国語辞典 is an easy read since the entries are insightful without being too long. I have seen it being highly recommended to native students as an essential second dictionary.

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While that’s a good dictionary, I think for learners using this specific app, the 明鏡国語辞典 is also a good choice for a first J-J dictionary. Its definitions are on the easier side too, and it’s the only dictionary in this app where it’s possible to enable furigana for the entire definition text. However, it doesn’t have accent info and audio like the 新明解国語辞典 does.

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iOS actually has a built-in monolingual dictionary (スーパー大辞林) for free. You only have to enable it in the settings. You can then just search words with Spotlight search, where it will show the definitions somewhere at the bottom including pitch-accent, reading, and other stuff related to the word in question.

Additionally, there is also a bilingual dictionary (ウィズダム和英・英和辞典).

I’d recommend using them first if you have an iOS device, since there’s no additional upfront cost and you can access them from anywhere since they integrated into Spotlight search.


!! That’s how you get it to search. I have just been doing highlight -> look up this whole

I would say the different explanations, jump function, and appendices still make the additional dictionaries worthwhile but the built-in iOS ones are great too.

edit: One example of a key difference between 新明解 and スーパー大辞林 is that the former usually includes details on how the word would be connected to other words structurally.

The app seems to have sales around the beginning of the Japanese school year, if anybody is interested.

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The sale for this app is live now. They have dictionaries with language pairs such as French-JP, Italian-JP, and German-JP also.

I’m being really silly here probably…how do I do this spotlight search vs. What I have been doing the whole time, of highlighting a word/kanji and using the “look up” function??!

I was doing the same thing until DonUnko mentioned it. If you are on iOS16 slide all the way left to where the widgets are, pull down and you should see the spotlight search.


Appreciate it, thank you for replying and showing me!


On iOS 16.4 just pull down at the middle of the screen anywhere in the home page or just click the Search button at the bottom of the screen (again in the home page).