Another great feature for Chinese learners which is built in to the iPhone is the dictionary. Sure, there are a number of dictionary apps that you can install that have much more advanced capabilities, but for the convenience of looking up words in any application, this is a useful feature!
Ever use your phone to read websites or books in a foreign language, but find it impossible because there are too many words you don’t know? Now you can look up words as you go, and do a little reading whenever you get a spare moment!
Here’s how you do it:
In any application, (web browser, email and text editor all work) press and hold on the word you want to look up. You will see a bar appear. Click on Define.
If you don’t have a dictionary for that language installed, you will see No definition found.
Click on Manage in the bottom left hand corner of the screen.
You will then see a list of the dictionaries available. The ones you have installed will have a black cross icon next to them. To install the Chinese dictionary, click on the cloud to the right of where it says Simplified Chinese-English (the dictionary has English to Chinese and Chinese to English). Simplified Chinese refers to a dictionary that is entirely in Chinese.
When you have installed the dictionaries you want, you can navigate back to a text, and press and hold on a word you want to look up, then press Define.
Providing the word is in one of the dictionaries you have installed, you will see the definition on the screen, and luckily for learners, it also includes a pinyin pronunciation guide. If you select an English word, you should see a Chinese definition.
And that’s all you have to do! If you find this tip useful, feel free to share it using the buttons below!