Pleco Chinese Dictionary

Pleco Chinese Dictionary

By Pleco Inc.

  • Category: Reference
  • Release Date: 2009-12-17
  • Current Version: 3.2.32
  • Adult Rating: 9+
  • File Size: 127.74 MB
  • Developer: Pleco Inc.
  • Compatibility: Requires iOS 9.0 or later.
Score: 4.5
From 4,798 Ratings


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 include two lovely free ones built-in: the popular open-source CC-CEDICT, with over 110,000 frequently-updated entries, and our own PLC dictionary, with 125,000 more detailed entries, parts of speech, and over 25,000 example sentences (with Pinyin). More than two dozen other dictionaries are available as free and paid ($) add-ons, including licensed titles from well-known publishers like Oxford, Longman, FLTRP, Tuttle, SLPH, and Commercial Press. • Powerful merged search: look up words by Chinese characters, Pinyin (spaces / tones optional), or English, with support for wildcards and full-text search. And no need to tediously flip between all of those dictionaries to find a word - just type in your search term and instantly get a combined, frequency-sorted result list. • Links and cross-references: easily look up character components, break down words into individual characters, look up lists of words containing a particular character, search across all dictionaries for example sentences containing a word, and even find synonyms / antonyms using our (experimental) free thesaurus add-on. • Gorgeous typography: see it for yourself in our screenshots - we think we're one of the best-looking Chinese dictionaries around. Alternate Kai/Song/Xing-style Chinese fonts are also available ($). • 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 we even support Cantonese search and display in our PLC dictionary. • Audio: Hear Mandarin and Cantonese pronunciations for words and example sentences using iOS' free built-in text-to-speech system. We also offer add-ons ($) with native-speaker Mandarin and Cantonese recordings, plus higher-quality Mandarin text-to-speech system options. • Document Reader: bring in text from the clipboard and tap on words in it to instantly look them up. Upgrade ($) adds support for tap-lookups in text, HTML, DOC, DOCX, PDF, and EPUB files, and in embedded lyrics in songs and podcasts. • 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.



  • Incredible Study Tool

    By Wheatability
    I can’t live without Pleco and I am glad I picked up the professional bundle. Looking forward to the update in the future!
  • Feature rich

    By JshMRsn
    It’s complex and not the prettiest app out there, but it packs an incredible set of features (via purchased bundles) that are all eventually useful.
  • Best Chinese translator

    By Super double X
    This is the only one that my teacher approves of and actually works. It is way better than google translate and 100% worth downloading
  • I wish all apps were this good

    By Nick Trell
    I’ve never had a problem with this app. It does what it needs to do and the dev is active and responsive to changes required for it.
  • Helped me pass HSK 6

    By Djsjshsbsuzuzj
    Downloaded this app for the first time 2 years ago when I started studying Chinese. Less than 2 months ago I passed the HSK 6 in China. This app was with me every single step of the way and made up a significant portion of my study and reference material. If you’re studying Chinese and are looking for an app to help your studies there’s simply no alternative.
  • Great dictionary and learning app but creepy example sentences

    By F. Tianwen
    Functionally speaking, I highly recommend this app. However I sometimes suspect they put some old nostalgic red guards in charge of coming up with example sentences. There’s a lot of creepy pro-Mao and pro-Communist Party political slogans in there that can be rather off putting.
  • Must Have

    By StewClan10
    If you are learning Chinese at any level whether you’re a student or a self-study learner you need Pleco! It has definitely helped my understanding of words and how they can be used. Chinese is not a language to learn without a good dictionary and Pleco is the one you need.
  • Excellent

    By Fm89130
    The best app for Chinese, it is useful for learning Chinese
  • The best

    By vanillapod-us
    This is hands down the best Chinese dictionary app out there. It is so comprehensive, it meets all our needs. Add-ons make it even more powerful. My kids and I have been using Pleco for years and never felt the need to look for another dictionary. 10 stars!!!
  • Support Hokkien Dictionary

    By MaxHso
    Dear developers, I really enjoy using Pleco and deeply impressed by your efforts to make it ever more accessible to people with disabilities. I'm writing this email to inquire the possibility to support Hokkien Dictionary in addition to Mandarin and Cantonese. I am native Mandarin speaker and currently preparing for Hokkien proficiency exam. Although there are many Hokkien-Mandarin dictionaries in print, few has digital version. Moreover, the most Hokkien dictionary app (such as 萌典) is issued from Taiwan, where the Hokkien pronounciation is slightly different from Mainland China and Singapore (both where Amoy accent is treated the standard). This situation makes Taiwanese Hokkien app essentially useless to me, as I am taking Hokkien proficiency exam administered from Mainland China. I wonder wouldn't it be wonderful for Pleco to incorporate Hokkien into your system? Thank you very much