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The 7 Apps Every Chinese Challenger Needs to Crack the Mandarin Code

The 7 Apps Every Chinese Challenger Needs to Crack the Mandarin Code

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Let’s dive into the exciting world of learning Chinese, offering a casual and approachable guide tailored for every Chinese learner.

This guide introduces a handpicked arsenal of apps, ingeniously designed to steer your voyage from novice beginnings to the pinnacle of Chinese linguistic prowess.

Learning a new language is like unlocking a whole new level in your favorite game, and when it comes to Chinese, the right tools can turn what seems like a daunting challenge into an enjoyable adventure.

Whether you’re just starting or looking to polish your skills, these seven language learning apps offer something for everyone.

From intuitive dictionaries to immersive lessons, let’s explore how each app can be your ally in conquering the Chinese language.


1. Pleco: The Ultimate Dictionary

Pleco isn’t just your average dictionary. It’s like a Swiss Army knife for anyone learning Chinese.

Notably, Pleco caters to a wide audience by covering both Traditional Chinese characters and Simplified Chinese characters, ensuring learners of all backgrounds have access to the tools they need for success.

With additional features like example sentences, pronunciation guides, and a vast library of add-ons, Pleco stands out as an essential companion for navigating the complexities of the Chinese language.

Following the dictionary features, Pleco offers a highly customizable flashcard system, supporting your unique learning pace and style.

This feature allows for a tailored approach to vocabulary retention, enhancing your learning experience with a method that best suits your needs.

Key Focus Area: Comprehensive Dictionary Covering both Simplified and Traditional Chinese Characters


2. Anki: The Flashcard Master

Anki is not just about memorizing flashcards; it’s a powerful tool designed to optimize your memory retention through a scientifically-backed spaced repetition system.

This means Anki intelligently schedules each card’s review time based on how well you’ve learned it, ensuring you focus on just the right material at the right time.

You can enrich your decks with images, audio clips, and custom fields, making Anki a versatile tool for mastering everything from basic vocabulary to complex characters and grammar points.

Key Focus Area: Customizable Spaced Repetition System


Check out our Anki Review for more in-depth info about this awesome tool.


3. Du Chinese: Immersive Reading Experience

Du Chinese takes you on a literary journey through the Chinese language, offering a wide range of stories that cater to different interests and proficiency levels.

Each story is designed to be not only educational but also engaging, with new content added weekly to keep your learning fresh and exciting.

The app features a well-designed interface that allows you to tap on any word for an instant translation and pronunciation, making it easier to build your vocabulary and improve your reading skills without feeling overwhelmed.

Key Focus Area: Graded Reading Material with Audio

The image shows an illustration of the great wall of China.


4. Skritter: Mastering Chinese Characters

Skritter addresses one of the most challenging aspects of learning Chinese: writing characters.

It goes beyond simple practice by incorporating a spaced repetition algorithm tailored to your learning speed, ensuring you remember how to write characters long after you’ve first learned them.

With Skritter, you’re not just practicing writing; you’re engaging in an interactive learning experience. You write characters directly in the app or browswer, and Skritter provides real-time grading.

Skritter ensures your learning is on the right track with instant corrections. If your character writing deviates from the standard form, Skritter will guide you to the correct written form, reinforcing proper writing habits and techniques.

For many learners, the correct stroke order of Chinese characters can be perplexing.

Skritter demystifies this by offering clear guidance on stroke order, ensuring that you not only write characters correctly but also understand the logic behind their structure.

Furthermore, Skritter provides detailed statistics on your progress, helping you identify areas for improvement.

With its engaging interface and comprehensive feedback system, Skritter turns the arduous task of character memorization into a rewarding game.

Key Focus Area: Chinese Character Writing



5. LingoDeer: Structured Language Courses

LingoDeer stands out by offering meticulously structured lessons that systematically guide you through the intricacies of Chinese grammar and vocabulary.

Each lesson builds on the previous one in a way that feels natural and progressive, ensuring a solid foundation in the language.

The app includes a variety of exercises that cover listening, reading, speaking, and writing skills, complemented by detailed explanations and cultural notes.

LingoDeer’s approach is holistic, making it an excellent choice for learners seeking a comprehensive and guided learning experience.

Key Focus Area: Comprehensive Lessons with a Focus on Grammar


6. Melnyks Chinese Podcast: Audio Learning on the Go

Melnyks Chinese Podcast is like having a personal Chinese tutor in your earbuds. Each episode tackles practical topics and everyday situations, allowing you to learn relevant phrases and expressions that you can immediately put to use.

The podcast format is ideal for auditory learners and those looking to improve their listening comprehension skills.

Sergey Melnyk, the host, provides clear explanations and cultural insights, making complex concepts accessible and engaging.

It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the language, whether you’re at home or on the move.

Key Focus Area: Listening Practice and Cultural Insights


7. Tandem: Language Exchange Community

Tandem takes the concept of language exchange and amplifies it with a global community of language learners.

The app facilitates genuine connections with native Chinese speakers, enabling you to practice your speaking and writing skills in real-life contexts.

Tandem’s interface includes features like text correction, voice notes, and video calls, making it versatile for all types of learners.

The community aspect of Tandem is particularly valuable, offering encouragement, cultural exchange, and the opportunity to build lasting friendships.

Key Focus Area: Real-Time Language Exchange with Native Speakers


Mandarin Unlocked: Concluding Your Quest

Chinese Mastery

On your journey to master Mandarin, the seven apps discussed above each carve out a unique facet of the learning experience.

Pleco unravels the complexities of vocabulary and characters, Anki embeds words into your long-term memory, and Du Chinese along with Skritter transform reading and writing into engaging quests.

LingoDeer lays down the grammar groundwork, Melnyks Podcast immerses you in cultural depths, and Tandem connects you to the real rhythm of conversation.

Together, they sculpt a victorious path through the Mandarin learning landscape, guiding you to the rewarding conclusion of your quest for Chinese fluency.