Vocabulary Learning on the Smartphone

One way to learn vocabulary is to use flashcards. The ubiquitous smartphones make it possible to carry around thousands of vocabulary cards in your pocket.

Before we started to cary around a computer in our pockets every day however it was the most common way to carry them around as paper flashcards. The problem with this approach is that they can take up quite some space if you want to repeat cards from say 20 units of some language course at least now and then. Now we only have to decide on what software to use.

Programs available

In the past we found these programs that can be used to learn and repeat vocabulary on the smartphone.
This page is meant to give you an aid to decide which program you might use.

Anki

Anki für WindowsAnki für Windows
Anki (for Win/Mac/Linux)
Anki for Android is Open Source (Project Homepage)
Anki for iOS (AnkiMobile Project Homepage)

Pros

  • Available as a PC program so a PC can be used to create and update Flashcards without the direct need of an internet connection.
  • It is quite possible to keep your flashcard data between your PC and the smartphone although of course pushing things through the cloud is even more comfortable.
  • Has been around for a very long time. PC predates smartphones and even the Android version has seen many years of development and bug fixing.
  • It features an online service for synching learning progress across devices and even has a (limited) web based app that can be used on it's own for learning everywhere.
  • Flashcards are customizable with some knowledge of HTML. So if we find a particular well suited layout for arabic varieties it is easy to share this.
  • Because the AnkiDroid (and Anki for PC) is Open Source we at the VICAV project could fix bugs even if the authors don't.

Cons

  • The price for iOS is unusual high. Here is an explanation.
  • Has a lot of features and is very customizable thus there is a lot to learn if one wants to use all the features

Flashcards Deluxe

Flashcards Deluxe cardvocabulary on Google Drive
Available for iOS and for Android.
The Project Homepage has some advice on how to use the software in different scenarios.

Pros

  • Everything is set up in a meaningful way, you just have to get some vocabulary data and you can start.
  • You create the Flashcard Sets as Tables and they are saved updated and synched on some cloud storage on the internet.
  • Android and iOS Apps are in the usual price range of some €/$
  • The In-App-Help is very good. Try it.

Cons

  • There is only a 6 cards 4 sets demo version. You have to buy it to use it.
  • You can't customize the Flashcards in many different ways.
  • There is no PC part. Everything is done on your smartphone.
  • Some cloud storage (Dropbox, GoogleDrive) is needed for creating your own flash card sets.
  • The link to the help file on the internet is broken so you have to use the In-App-Help

gflash+ flashcards & tests

gflash+ card
gWhiz Apps
App help on the Internet

Pros

  • Free on every Platform
  • Public repository for flashcards with easy way to publish own creations
  • Integrated with GoogleDrive for private flash card sets.
  • Good In-App-Help.
  • Even sound is supported on iOS.

Cons

  • No (known) way to adjust the font used -> VICAV transcription will get unreadable.
  • No sound support on Android.