Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary Education App Review (iOS, $19.99)


Languages: English

Seller: Innovative Language Learning, LLC

-added high res icon for iPhone 4
-fixes an issue where study center entries would not get saved under iOS 4 devices that support multitasking

Customer Ratings

Current Version:
4 Ratings
All Versions:
30 Ratings


Please note that Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary requires about 120MB of free space for installation and to decompress its audio files

GENGO TALKING JAPANESE DICTIONARY – The Most User-Friendly, Comprehensive Japanese Dictionary in Existence!

Containing more than 120,000 words, this is the only Japanese dictionary you’ll ever need. At Innovative Language Learning we believe in engaging as many senses as possible to learn a new language. So we’ve developed this one-of-a-kind talking dictionary that ensures success for all Japanese language students.

Download the Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary today, and you’ll find the following unparalelled features:

-Never be without the definition you need on the spot … over 120,000 words based on Jim Breen’s highly respected EDICT Japanese dictionary.
-Search in English, Rouma-ji, or Japanese kana and kanji to find the word you’re looking for with ease.
-Learn each word’s meaning through context clues … nearly 130,000 example sentences from the highly respected Eijiro dictionary. ***Please note that due to the potentially offensive nature of some sample sentences, you must be running firmware 3.0 or above and Gengo Japanese Dictionary version 1.1 or above on your device to access example sentences***
-More than 100,000 audio clips demonstrating authentic pronunciation to help you perfect your speech fast. (20,000 clips included with Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary. 80,000 plus are available for instant download when you click on the “listen” button. Note: Internet connection is required to access the extra audio clips.)
-Each word includes a voice recorder. Use this recorder to perfectly match your speech to that of the native recording. Play your recording back and rerecord as many times as necessary to get it right! (supported by iPhone)
-Incredibly helpful on the streets of Japan … read signs and get the lay of the land with instant access to detailed information on the kanji (Chinese characters) found in each word. Also search for this detailed info on over 6,000 kanji. There’s even a built-in handwriting input to draw the character you’re looking for.
-If you need to find the meaning of a character but you don’t know how to draw it, then the kanji component search will help you find the meaning of the character in a flash. Simply pick one or more component parts that make up the kanji and hit search.
-Easily retrieve info from previous searches so you’ll only need to look up words and characters once and they’ll become a permanent part of your personal lexicon.
-Bookmark words, examples, and kanji that you want to perfect in the Study Center. You can go back to the study center later and utilize a special flashcard function to begin your studies.
-Built-in “help” function accessible by the touch of a button.

This comprehensive dictionary is the ultimate tool for anyone wanting instant access to more than 120,000 word definitions and over 6,000 kanji definitions. Download this one-of-a-kind talking dictionary at the special introductory rate and you’ll also automatically get a whopping 50% off discount off any subscription to our language learning websites.

Customer Reviews

  • すばらしい!!

    by 落ちる..


  • Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary

    by tricycle222

    I have been using this app almost from the initial issue date. There were definite problems back then, but many of these have been resolved with version 1.1. The tech support was actually timely and personal. This is something that I think is unusual. Since I already had Kotoba (free), I was a little leery about the expense. I still think it is overpriced, but it does have sound recordings and example sentences (I think they would be difficult for beginners without a large background in kanji). It is important to enter Japanese words with kana or kanji to get examples that actually match the word you are looking for. Searching by radical in the application is fun after spending years in Nelson's "Modern Reader's Japanese-English Character Dictionary". I was so busy just looking up words I almost missed this feature. I also like the implementation of the stroke order for the kanji. Tapping to start and stop the writing. The size is very nice too. I can almost trace over it as it is drawing the character. It is slow to load, so if you are in a hurry, keep another source available. But there is a wealth of material very nicely packaged in this app and I believe that an active user base (a reduced price would help) will be able to steer the developers to an even more effective dictionary when it is updated.

  • Ok! But needs some improvements...

    by Sashiageru

    This dictionary has great potential, both because of the audio feature and the example sentences. However, speed is certainly a problem (comparing to Kotoba, which is FREE), and the price seems a bit too much (app japanese is cheaper and I think it is more useful/quick). If they can improve these two things this app will be surely excelent for any student of the japanese language.

  • Swiss Army Knife of Dictionaries

    by nihonjon

    Ok, so many people say it is slower than Kotoba, but I found only maybe 3-4 seconds difference, BUT Kotoba doesn't have sound, so I don't think that's a fair comparison. It has a lot of cool things like the Kanji radical search and of course the voice recorder. I enjoy comparing my accent to the native's to make sure I say the word right. The voice quality could be better, but as of right now, it's ahead of its time and no one else has a comparable product. Keep up the good work!

  • It's ok

    by mizu22

    The Gengo Talking Japanese Dictionary is ok. The voice quality sounds extremely compressed. The red dot at the top of the screen with the pull down menu to sell additional programs is a nuisance. It seems that Inovative Learning is just throwing a bunch of programs at the iPhone/Touch to see what sticks. I would prefer one or two first class applications from this group instead of the 9 currently in inventory. Give them credit, the scope of this program is both overwhelming and underwhelming at the same time. I recommend waiting for the next rev at the earliest.

  • Weighed down with features

    by bdonnach

    This is the most feature rich Japanese dictionary, but the features seem to weigh it down so much as to render it useless. Want to look up a word while carrying on a conversation? 30 seconds to start the program and 20 seconds to search once you push go. A real conversation stopper. While hardly functional as a conversation tool, it does shine as a study aid. The kanji keyboard, an iPhone feature, was great for helping me decipher signs on a recent trip to Tokyo, and even helped decipher trail signs while hiking hakkodo san this last weekend. But, that is thanks to integration if the iphone kanji keyboard, which you can also use in cheaper and faster dictionaries. What this does that the others don't is allow me to save new words and kanji to a study folder, which coverts my saved items into flash cards. I have a problem with the search results, which tend to return lists of words for every search, most that are not relavent, or are the wrong words fir conversation. I would like to see sample applications if the words, like I can find in a good conversation dictionary. This application provides sample japanese sentences, but you need to know kanji to read them. Finally, the most common method for quiiting the application seems to be the crash. A bonus: A major warning about signing up for the lifetime free account: The developer is a major spammer, sending me multiple emails a day. Bottom line, a good study aid, but a poor and unreliable tool for daily use from an obtrusive spammer. Spend your $20 elsewhere. For now, this tool is mostly potential.

  • Slow 2 load! Ads slow down app

    by SirenSword

    Ver.1.1 still needs a lot of work. It is super slow. There is an arrow tab where everytime you go from history to study guide etc.. It will load new advertisements on the backend. Voice overs are ok but not great. There is a section in settings where it asks you to turn audio to high quality when DUH. Why would not want audio in high quality. More audio files for the long sentence structures would be nice. So, please update your app.

  • Look elsewhere

    by Jimwilt

    I had high hopes for this app. The folks at Japanesepod101 have been doing really cool stuff, but this app is not ready for prime time. First the program takes a very long time to load and the searches take much longer than Kotoba!. Audio quality is very poor especially for the male voices. Sometimes the sample phrases provided with your search word have nothing to do with that word e.g. "kedo". Many common words do not have an audio file like tempura, sushi, densha etc.I suggest using Kotoba (free) and then bookmarking Jim Breen's wwwjdic (free) and using those audio files - which ironically the folks at Japanesepod101 also did and are very good. If the sample phrases can be provided with and without kanji so the beginning Japanese learner can work through each word without having to know kanji, it's value as a learning tool would be much greater.

  • So far Useless

    by Disappointed_too

    I planned on using this app on an iPod Touch. The app will not go past the advertisement screen with the "Start Now" button. What good is an app you cannot use? I cannot rate it on functionality because so far it has none. Beware if using on latest gen devices, apparently it does not work.

  • bad for kanji; annoying ads; slow

    by cozykiwibird

    This app is very slow to load and sometimes requires user-action to enter the app. This dictionary allows you to search for example sentences, which it sometimes actually has, which is nice. The dated history is nice too. However, the slow, unattractive flash cards need work and the study lists that serve as their source should be divisable into user-defined groups. The kanji stroke order is my biggest problem. The animations are missing for many kanji that other dictionaries (such as Japanese & ShinKanji) have. It uses the same KanjiCafe animations as Kotoba!, but this app stretches them out so that they are pixelated and unprofessional looking. In addition, the layout is dull and the sometimes flashing button at the top of the screen is distracting, but the ability to minimize the record button is a saving grace. Yet, I wish that I could listen to the words without unminimizing the obtrusive record/playback panel. This is my least used dictionary and I would not use it at all if not for the fact that I was able to find the reading はくはつ in this dictionary even though I could not find it in the Kotoba; Japanese; or Oxford dictionary apps. -Updated Review- After updating, I had to delete and redownload the app due to crashing even after resetting my device (the new iPod touch with 3.0 software). App opens with a japanesepod101 ad asking the user to sign up on their website (even if they already have). In addition, while using the app, the button that advertises other applications sometimes glows/flashes annoyingly; this can be very distracting to a learner. Signing up will result in innumerable emailings often begging the recipient to pay monthly fees for their website. I didn't pay $20 for this app to be bombarded with ads. If I had known was involved, I would not have purchased it because of their aggressive advertising. There are many better products available. For example; Kotoba! (excellent free dictionary with kanji stroke order animations); Japanese (dictionary/study lists/stroke order animations/conjugations); iKanji (stroke order animation/effective kanji study/long compound and usage lists; Shinkanji (kanji dictionary with stroke order/soon to be full featured word dictionary); AccelaStudy (audio vocabulary quizzes, review lists, and flashcards) To encourage improvements on my investment, I will rewrite my review for this app after updates to see if it has aquired any value.

  • Wait for updates in hope of improvement

    by purtillian

    As stated in other reviews, Innovative Language Learning generally produces good products, but this one falls short in a couple of areas. Performance is slow, audio quality & clarity is lacking (though may sound better if played through an external unit, but then you lose mobility), and actual recorded samples seem few and far between. A large number of words that I have searched for have no recordings in the database. Lastly, since purchasing this app, I have been unable to back up my iPhone. I contacted ILL, and they have confirmed the issue as a bug for which they are currently writing a fix. So, in short, it would appear that this product was released prematurely. Additionally, it is listed at an introductory price of $20, which is somewhat on the higher end of language app prices, and one would like to see better QA and a more developed product at that price. I'm hoping that updates will greatly improve the performance.

  • not happy

    by mateokun

    This might be an awesome app if I could get it to stay open for more than 7 seconds. Every single time I open it and input a word, it immediately closes on me. So frustrating and disappointing to pay $20 and get absolutely nothing for it.

  • The Infomercial Dictionary

    by Captain Banzai

    The dictionary has some interesting features and voice for SOME words, but when I pay this much for an app, I want a registered copy, not shareware that constantly advertises other products. Also, I am getting sick of insulting emails rating how "serious" I am as a student based on how much money I send to the company. A note to the company: the $20 I wasted for this ad shooter is all you will see out of me. And do not use your infomercial emails to insult customers' intelligence or you will not have any more customers.

  • Won't even start after the latest update

    by bad¬good

    I updated the app today (8/15/09) and the app won't start any more. I really want my money back.

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