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My Top Chinese Learning iPhone Apps

Well, since I sucked in and got an iPhone a few months ago, I’ve been trying my best to turn it into an ultimate tool in assisting with my studies. Since then, I’ve come across a few apps that I feel are the most useful in mobile studies! Also: they’re all FREE!!

I like pictures, hopefully you do too. Enjoy!

Chinese Studying Apps:

Pleco Chinese Dictionary


This app is a fantastic dictionary and I highly recommend it. The interface is appealing and easy to use. There are plenty of free dictionaries to download and use—and that is all that you will need. In addition, there’s plenty of paid add-ons ranging from audio (male/female voices), extended dictionaries, and my favorite, the OCR:


View their website here.

View more great screenshots here.

App Store link.

cBook Lite

A great ebook application that allows you to download books direct from (好讀網站). Side note: Haodoo also allows you to download in a variety of formats (pdf, as well as other ebook formats) that really extends the usefulness of the site.


Links to some kick-starter books:

Harry Potter《哈利波特》

Lord of the Rings 《魔戒之主》

cBook Lite just brings those downloads to your iPhone. Very useful for direct access to Chinese ebooks!


View cBook website here.

App Store link.


This links to news articles directly from China Times, a major newspaper in Taiwan. It’s a great way to keep up with the news on the road/commute and just browse for interesting articles. I always found more on here out of boredom on the way to work, than sitting at home and trying to browse the website. It was easier to navigate away to something else at home, so having this on the road made me focus on reading news articles. Definitely worth trying.


App Store link.

I’ll post more about useful apps for living in Taiwan (and also some specifically for Taipei). While they may not be of direct use, they may be interesting to look at for anyone planning on coming here!

6 thoughts on “My Top Chinese Learning iPhone Apps”

  1. It’s apps like these that make a strong case for splashing out on an iPhone 😛

    One question though – with Haodoo, how do you download .pdfs? All I sees is these weird .pdb files wot I’ve never come across before…

    1. After I got the iPhone in Taiwan, I found a load of useful apps for life in Taipei. I love having it, but I worry if I had to bring it back to the states I couldn’t actually afford it anymore!

      (Also! Sorry for the delay in replying!)

      With the Haodoo files–the .pdb files work fine with cBook Lite. Are you familiar with Calibre [ ]? I highly suggest it if you’re into the whole ebooks thing. If so, then you can actually download an add-one for it that deals with .pdb files (which allows you to convert them into other formats). See here: [ ] It does take some work, but you can get it going pretty easily. You can convert it by right-clicking on the file and selecting convert. If you have any trouble, I’ll snap some screenshots and help you through it some more.

      I know it’s a bit messy to do, but it’s worth it in the end! Any more questions let me know!

      1. I hadn’t come across Calibre before, so thanks for pointing it out! It’s great! 🙂 The add-on was pretty easy to install too. Now to go on a ebook downloading spree!

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