If you’re planning your trip to China, I thought I’d give you a little look at some of the most useful apps on the market to help you make the most out of your stay here. There are thousands of great apps available, so here are a few I have picked out:
1) Pleco – An incredible Chinese dictionary. Free download. There are possibilities to pay for upgrades, but the core dictionary is free (upgrade includes flashcards). It is quick, has an incredible amount of vocab and is very easy to use. It includes full-screen handwriting and a radical index. I use this for hours a day – highly recommended. Also has some great 成语’s(Chinese sayings) if you are interested.
2) Weixin / We Chat – This is essentially the equivalent of WhatsApp but for China. Another free app, you can send instant messages and voice messages at the tap of a button. Another quite fun extra is you have your own little page with your own pictures and status’, and can find and talk to people in the vicinity (after checking out their pictures…!) I’ve heard it is often used by Chinese singles looking to find potential girlfriends/ boyfriends. Probably worth a try!
3) Accuweather – A free, easy to use app with a nice interface. Has special pages for almost every city in China, and the rest of the world in fact. A nice tool for travelling and every day life.
4) XE Currency Exchange – Not much of a problem for the English in China (£1 almost exactly equals 10RMB), but for those who work in Euros and Dollars this app can be quite useful. Free download giving you up-to-date exchange rates. Each data set is stored on your phone to keep previous rates available even when you are offline.
5) China Air Pollution Index – It is no secret that China produces a lot of pollution. This app lets you know just how dangerous it is to be in 120 of China’s major cities. It shows you graphs of pollution trends and is even kind enough to let you know when it is wise to wear a mask!
6) Travel – There are loads of apps related to travelling/ city information for China. I have never downloaded any of these, but have heard that some of them are very useful. If you are interested have a look at these apps: “City Weekend Mobile”, “Explore Metro Guide” and “Dongdong Mobile”.
If you have any other suggestions please let us know!