Japanese Learning Apps

One of the most convenient ways to practice learn Japanese is with learning apps.  By practicing at regular intervals throughout the day, your Japanese will really start to take off!  If you don’t know any Hiragana or Katakana yet, you might want to go visit the Reading and Writing section first.

JapaneseMEOW Kanji Game

Match the kanji with the correct hiragana.  There’s a prize waiting at the top of Tokyo Tower!  Our collection of kanji was put together with the JLPT N5 in mind.

Release Date:
August 1st, 2018


The Kanji game is here!

The game will start with the hiragana meaning marked on the white lantern. Simply match the meaning to the kanji by landing on the correct red lantern. Your success of landing on the right lanterns will lift you further up into the sky and landing on the wrong ones will have dire consequences. If you can make it up to the top of the Tokyo Tower, there’s a rocket chair waiting for you to take you to the final destination. Buckle up!

★ Features:
– Reminders of which Kanji you missed, and of course which one sent you to the ground.
– Randomized shuffling of the Kanji lanterns after every restart.
– A FREE Skype lesson for those who pass the game.

Do not play this game if you afraid of heights, cute kittens or kanji. Hey, don’t laugh — kanji can be intimidating!

JapaneseMEOW Hiragana Game


Practice your hiragana by landing on the correct balloons and pop your way up to the top of the Tokyo Skytree.

Release Date:
August 1st, 2017



The Hiragana Game - Desktop

Katakana Game Screenshot Katakana Game Screenshot

The Hiragana Game will always be free!

We designed the JapaneseMEOW Hiragana Game as a free resource for our readers.  Let’s face it – learning Hiragana and Katakana off the charts can get a little boring.  People also seem to have a fascination with popping things, so I figured why not.  If you are afraid of heights or cute kittens then this game isn’t for you.  One thing I would like to assure you of is that our main character always lands on his feet.  No cats were harmed while making this game and we paid our great hero a fair salary of low salt flaked white tuna every day.

JapaneseMEOW Katakana Game


Practice your Katakana by landing on the correct balloons and pop your way across Osaka.

Release Date:
March 26th, 2018


Katakana Game Screenshot Katakana Game Screenshot

The Katakana Game is finally here!  Buckle up, kitties.

As you may know, Katakana is more difficult to learn than Hiragana because you will have less exposure to it during your studies. We hope this game helps with that! I hope you know the drill by now – land on the wrong balloon and you pay with your life.

Memrise (flashcard app)


Have fun while learning a language with Memrise! The more you enjoy learning, the more (and quicker) you will learn. This is why entertainment mixed with real-life, relevant content is at the very core of the Memrise language learning experience. Learn French, Spanish, Japanese, Italian, German…

Memrise screenshot

My Review of “Memrise”

You can learn 25 languages with this mobile app, including Japanese of course.  With over 20 million registered users, this isn’t just an app for learning languages. It’s also great for learning math, science, economics, etc.  Memrise incorporates questions and quizzes, so it’s not just another flashcard app either.  

Anki (Flashcard App)



Anki is a program which makes remembering things easy. Because it’s a lot more efficient than traditional study methods, you can either greatly decrease your time spent studying, or greatly increase the amount you learn.

My Review of “Anki”

Flashcards are great for focusing your study sessions specifically on increasing your vocabulary.  Imagine such a flashcard session as an “isolation” exercise at the gym.  You will be targeting your word count and nothing else.  This app also makes use of a study principle commonly referred to as “spaced repetition”.  It works like this: if a flashcard is very easy for you, it won’t show up again for a long time.  If the flashcard was difficult, you will see it again much sooner.  This study technique results in a very efficient delivery of words to your brain in comparison to regular flashcards.  For this reason, Anki is a very powerful tool for studying Japanese and I highly recommend it.  The only word of caution I would throw in there is to make sure you are downloading high quality decks.  Only use decks with good reviews that are popular in their database among other users, otherwise you could be studying something that is entirely wrong.  You might end up learning a rare tribal language without even realizing it.  I’m kidding of course, but stick to the common decks on Anki and you will have some very effective study sessions!

Japanese Kanji Study



Study with flashcards, customizable quizzes and writing challenges. Each kanji has detailed information and many examples. The app provides a powerful search tool for looking up kanji by radicals, stroke count and more. You can also make custom sets to match your textbooks or focus on the kanji you struggle with the most.


My review of “Japanese Kanji Study”

This has got to be one of the best Kanji apps available right now.  Each kanji can be studied in full depth, with the definitions and examples organized by JLPT (N5, N4, N3, N2, N1).  This is very useful to my students because kanji can be overwhelming, so this makes it easy to focus on one level at a time.  The flashcards are great, but the writing challenges are really what got my husband motivated to add this to our list of learning apps.  A big advantage this app has over others is how easy it is to customize.  You can really fine tune this to be the ultimate tool for studying a specific JLPT as I mentioned before, or even a specific set of Kanji.  It’s also great to supplement with our Kanji cards for those times when you want more detail than what we show you.




This Japanese/English dictionary is massive, yet easily fits inside your Android phone or tablet. Contains more than 174,650 entries and 52,000 examples, as well as stroke order animations for kanji. Japanese works completely offline, an internet connection is not required.



My review of “Japanese”.

You may be wondering if I made a typo with my the main title.  “Japanese”?  Really?  Yes that is the strangely vague name of this dictionary app.  Don’t let that fool you though — looking past the name you will find one of the most powerful tools for studying Japanese.  I would even go as far as to tell you not to travel Japan without it.  Thousands of translations and examples can be accessed with the search function,  and yes you can even use Romaji spellings in your queries.  This makes it seem very beginner-friendly, however there seems to be a lack of furigana with most of the kanji in the examples.  Some of you may not be able to read them yet at your current level, but you can still make use of everything else this app has to offer.  Definitely add this one to your collection!