Pleco Chinese Dictionary

Pleco Chinese Dictionary

By Pleco Inc.

  • Category: Reference
  • Release Date: 2009-12-17
  • Current Version: 3.2.35
  • Adult Rating: 9+
  • File Size: 129.55 MB
  • Developer: Pleco Inc.
  • Compatibility: Requires iOS 9.3 or later.
  • App Ratings:
    4.5/5 ( 4,957 Reviews)
  • Price:
Pleco Chinese Dictionary App Ratings: 4.5
Total 4,957 Reviews

Pleco Chinese Dictionary App Description

NO SUBSCRIPTIONS; we offer additional dictionaries, graded readers, and other features as one-time purchases, but there are absolutely no subscriptions in our app. Pleco is the ultimate Chinese learning companion: an integrated dictionary / document reader / flashcard system with fullscreen handwriting input and live OCR, from a company that's been making the world's best mobile Chinese learning apps since 2001. Major features: ($ = paid add-on) • Amazing dictionaries. We offer two free built-in dictionaries: the popular open-source CC-CEDICT, with over 110,000 frequently-updated entries, and our own PLC dictionary, with 125,000 entries, parts of speech, and over 25,000 example sentences (with Pinyin). More than two dozen other dictionaries are available as free and paid ($) add-ons, including licensed titles from well-known publishers like Oxford, Longman, FLTRP, Tuttle, SLPH, and Commercial Press. • Powerful merged search: look up words by Chinese characters, Pinyin (spaces / tones optional), or English, with support for wildcards and full-text search. And no need to tediously flip between all of those dictionaries to find a word - just type in your search term and instantly get a combined, frequency-sorted result list. • Links and cross-references: easily look up character components, break down words into individual characters, look up lists of words containing a particular character, and search across all dictionaries for example sentences containing a word. • Gorgeous typography: see it for yourself in our screenshots - we think we're one of the best-looking Chinese dictionaries around. Alternate Kai/Song/Xing-style Chinese fonts are also available ($). • PRC/HK/Taiwan-friendly: every part of Pleco supports both traditional and simplified characters, headword pronunciations can be shown in Zhuyin as well as in Pinyin, and several dictionaries even support Cantonese. • Audio: Hear Mandarin and Cantonese for words and example sentences using iOS' free built-in text-to-speech system. We also offer add-ons ($) with native-speaker Mandarin and Cantonese recordings, plus higher-quality Mandarin text-to-speech options. • Document Reader: bring in text from the clipboard and tap on words in it to instantly look them up. Upgrade ($) adds support for tap-lookups in text, HTML, DOC, DOCX, PDF, and EPUB files. We also offer graded readings ($). • OCR: look up words simply by pointing your device's camera at them, or by tapping on them in a still image. ($) • Fullscreen handwriting: use your device's whole screen instead of just a little box. Extremely accurate and highly tolerant of stroke order mistakes. ($) • Flashcards: create a card from any dictionary entry with a single button tap, import premade word lists, use advanced memorization techniques like SRS, and study in a variety of modes including fill-in-the-blanks handwriting and tone drills. ($) • Stroke Order Diagrams: animations showing you how to draw each character; 500 characters for free, 28,000 in paid ($) version. • User dictionaries: create new dictionary entries right on your device as you encounter new words. ($) • Absolutely no ads. We also offer famously excellent customer support and an active user community at And we're constantly working to make our products better; our sales and customer base have been growing for 18 years across 4 different mobile platforms. You can be confident that we'll still be fixing bugs and adding features for years to come. Our paid add-ons can be transferred to other devices that link to your iTunes account just like any other paid iTunes content; simply install our free app, open up the "Add-ons" screen, and tap on the "Restore Purchases" button to activate your purchase on each device. Please contact us at, via the form at, or using the in-app "Contact Support" command with any questions - we'll be delighted to hear from you.


Pleco Chinese Dictionary App Screenshots

Pleco Chinese Dictionary App Reviews

  • Grasshopper

    By MoiDaLaLa60606:)
    Wonderful app for anyone wanting to study Chinese! Highly recommend for any serious student, or anyone who just wants to browse the entries.
  • If I could only have one app, it would be this

    By Hjhfruhgb
    I can’t imagine not having Pleco. It makes a language as intimidating as Chinese easier to learn. My Chinese would be so much worse without Pleco. It was my life line during my exchange year and is helping me continue learn once I went back to my home country. When ever I think about learning another language I just get sad knowing there isn’t a Pleco for that language. I would have never thought I would put so much money into an app before. You do *not* need to pay for the add ons to get great use out of Pleco, but the basic bundle was basically my best buy ever, and after taking a class that focused a lot on 成语 on of the specialized dictionaries for 成语 was a life saver (the other dictionaries do have idioms but the idiom specific one explains it in Chinese and that was way more helpful for my class where I had to explain them in Chinese on tests). Small suggestion: being able to add our own example sentences for words would be SUPER helpful. Also, have you guys thought about extending this format into different languages?
  • Pleco is mandatory

    By blueprince25
    If you’re learning Chinese, buy the professional version of Pleco. Not having it as a resource would be like working as an investment banker without a computer. I can’t imagine learning Chinese without it. What’s even more impressive is the developer’s commitment to updating the platform and adding new features, continuing to make an already excellent platform better.
  • Disappointed

    By jdd0927
    I had purchased both the live handwriting and the live OCR capabilities on this app prior to my recent trip to China. The translations provided were unsatisfactory for any practical purposes; compared to the free Microsoft translation app and the translation feature on WeChat, what was provided here was often non-sensical and paled in comparison. While it might be useful for academic purposes, in real life it sorely lacked
  • 太棒了的中文学手机软件啊!

    By zfjuurrghyyyji
    The gold standard in language learning apps. I've tried many different apps and they're usually quite undeveloped, unintuitive, expensive, and subscription based. Pleco gives incredible value to my studies. It's so feature rich, customisable, scalable, and not subscription based that those other apps could never hope to being me back.
  • Have been using Pleco since the days of Palm OS

    By G.L.T.
    I’ve gotten so much utility since the days of PalmOS. And only paid for the application once. Support is superb and customer centric. New dictionaries and features are introduced all the time. Six stars if I could.
  • Priciest app I own, but worth it!

    By LRNR3
    This is the priciest app I own. But for me, it's worth it. It's the most serious Chinese app I've seen yet. Today I went to request a feature (automatically importing and searching for items on the clipboard). I quickly searched through the settings, and the feature was already there. I turned that feature on, and it works great. This app has everything.
  • Changed my relationship with grandparents

    By kwghvcxgh
    This app has changed and improved my relationship with my grandparents so much. They only speak Mandarin Chinese, and I can use this app to translate on-the-fly when I visit them or call them on the phone. This app has enriched our conversations and relationship for the better. I am 100% grateful for the creators and maintainers of this wonderful tool!
  • Life Changing Truly Excellent App

    By mc2567
    Being in China now for over eight years, this app has changed my life and deeply enhanced my ability to study Chinese language, history and culture. It is a truly excellent app and provides its user with a fantastic array of materials and resources with great efficiency.
  • Best Chinese Dictionary App

    By Codyfox117
    I have searched through dozens of apps to aid me in learning Mandarin. I have ended up using this app more than any other. In my opinion, it is the most comprehensive and well designed dictionary app I’ve been able to find. Three of my favorite features are, 1: The multiple explanations and definitions for each word, 2: The clipboard reader, where I can easily look up words in a long paragraph, 3: The add-on for character stroke order. Keep it up Pleco! Note to developer: For the most part I really like the design of the app. However, one thought I’d like to mention is that sometimes all the definitions for a word start to run together. Myself and others have noted that it could be helpful to have a graphical design hierarchy that makes it easier to differentiate the various definitions, especially when there are many. Thanks for the app!