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Home / Tips and Tricks / 3 Apps to Learn Chinese with Your Phone «Android :: Gadget Hacks

3 Apps to Learn Chinese with Your Phone «Android :: Gadget Hacks

Learning Chinese is hard, but with a few great apps it can be a lot easier. As a native English speaker currently living in China, I recently went through this process. After playing on the field, here are the three apps that I personally think will help you best with your Chinese learning adventure.

Chinese has many dialects. This guide covers the most commonly used Mandarin language. Everything you need for basic Chinese lessons is provided below – and I would like to tell you from experience that learning a new language with a telephone is much easier than in the old days when you had to rely on books and the like ,

] App 1
: HelloChinese

HelloChinese is a good place to start learning. It is beginner friendly and has a good curriculum. It offers many different educational games and a variety of learning activities, including videos, multiple-choice questions, sound challenges, fun mini-games, a gamification element that motivates you, and more.

The variety of different learning activities does not help that to be so boring. You can create a good foundation for the Chinese language by using this app. Therefore, I recommend you to start at this point.


Overall, a good performance app that provides a centralized syllabus for the Chinese language. The free version is very user friendly.


The app does not contain social elements. It does not encourage you to use your Chinese in the real world.

App 2: HelloTalk

After receiving some basic Chinese chops with the first app, you can use HelloTalk. This app allows you to speak Chinese with real people, including other learners and native speakers. There are many Chinese people learning English. Chinese want to practice with native English speakers, you want to practice with someone who speaks Chinese so you can have a language exchange.

Talking to others in a new language is great fun and you can find friends pretty easy. Unlike the other apps, you can get real feedback from native speakers. Many people feel uncomfortable or nervous about talking to people in a new language. HelloTalk helps with that, because it's online and not so intrusive. HelloTalk is not only suitable for learning Chinese, but also for practicing any language.


Meet people who speak Chinese. Practice Chinese with real people. Feeling comfortable talking to real people in Chinese. Get feedback from real people who correct your mistakes. The free version is good enough. You may want to upgrade in the future.


This is more of an app for practice than for learning. The translation function can cost you money.

App 3: Google Translate

HelloChinese gives you a guided lesson with a specific set of words. If you want to learn something specific, you are on your own. This often happens when you have a basic vocabulary in a new language, but you are constantly finding that you need to learn new words to fill in small gaps.

With Google Translate, you can translate things from Chinese into English and German into English into Chinese. It can even help you communicate with the automatic translation feature. If you need to search for a particular word, you will get all the necessary information: Pinyin (Chinese with English characters), pronunciation and characters.


Finding and learning specific words. Translate Chinese in the wild. Translate audio into English.


This is not particularly good to practice a word after you have figured out what it means. It's more of an app that lets you find out what it means or how you say it and then move on.

Cover picture and screenshots of Spencer Depas / Gadget Hacks

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