Free Android Hanping Chinese-English Dictionary

The selection of free Chinese Dictionaries available for Google’s Android mobile phone platform isn’t as plentiful as the iPhone, but there are a few out there worth checking out. One of those is Hanping Chinese-English Dictionary, although not as feature-packed as the also free Dian Hua on the iPhone, Hanping is fast and easy to use.

You can find the app in the Android Market Place by scanning the barcode to the right with your Android phone and Barcode Scanner app:

Hanping Chinese English Dictionary Barcode

The Android Market Place lists the features of the free version of Hanping as:

  • Search Hanzi, Pinyin or English
  • Simplified or Traditional Chinese chars
  • Voice Recognition (Android OS 2.1+)
  • Custom Search
  • No Internet Connection required (but will use one if required for ad support)
  • Dictionary installed to SD card

The pay version (available for £4.49UK, about $6.49US) has the following extra features:

  • Mandarin audio
  • Favorites, Chinese Idioms
  • Widgets
  • Clipboard
  • QSB
  • Useful links to websites
  • No ads!

Back to the free version – after launching Hanping, you simply get a search box, within which can be entered either Chinese characters, English and also Pinyin. Text entry works fine, and there is only one small issue of the buttons to choose whether you are entering Pinyin or English becomes obscured by the word suggestion list that is built into android (see images below).

Hanping Search Box
Hanping Search Box

Hanping Chinese Search
Hanping Chinese Search

Hanping Pinyin Input
Hanping Pinyin Input

Hanping Options
Hanping Options

The search results consist of one page – a list of Chinese words with Pinyin pronunciations, and below each word the English definition, there’s no way to view a word alone, you can only view the search results as a list.

The adverts appear above the keyboard or at the bottom of the search results list, they are unobtrusive and never cause any problems with the interface.

Pressing the phone’s menu button brings up the in-app options, which are ‘Traditional <-> Simplified’ display, Help and About.

It is a shame that the free version doesn’t have a favourites/bookmarks option, but for free it’s hard to complain. As of yet I have not tried the pay version of Hanping, but judging by the feature list of above, it should meet the requirements of most Chinese learners.

Not a bad dictionary at all and definitely worth checking out if you using an Android phone. After asking the developer about the pro version on twitter, I got the following response regarding a new version with UI updates:

@ChineseHacks BTW, in one or two weeks time there will be a new version with an overhaul of the UI and UX, plus some nice new touches.

So check back in a few weeks for an updated review after the new version is released!

You can read more about Hanping Chinese-English Dictionary on the official blog and in the official forums. You can also follow the developer Embermitre on twitter.

Know of any other Android Chinese dictionaries or software for learning Chinese? Let us know below:

19 responses to “Free Android Hanping Chinese-English Dictionary

  1. I cannot “hand-write Chinese characters in the search box” in the free Hanping Chinese-English dictionary. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Lilian,

      The ability to write Chinese is a functionality of the phone software itself, and not Hanping. If you don’t have an Android phone that was bought in China or Taiwan then you might not have Chinese writing functionality by default.

      Though there is hope! You can install a Chinese input method through the Android Market Place. gPen seems to be quite good and if you search for that in the Market Place there is both a Simplified and Chinese version available:

      Let me know if you need any more help with configuring this and I’ll see if I can track down the creator of Hanping to see if he can add any advice.


  2. It doesn’t work. The free version used to work on my HTC Desire HD. But the PRO version and now the old free version cannot open the data file. Also states database disk usage is malformed. Help !

    1. Sometimes SD cards do not work as well as they should 🙁 The latest version of Hanping does a better job of detecting such issues and attempting to auto-fix them. So, please try the latest version and see if it helps!

  3. Hi John,

    It sounds like the data file on your SD card (or the SD card itself) is corrupt. Please try deleting the file located on the SD card at:


    If that does not work, then please try using another SD card.

    If that does not work then please send an email to

    1. Thanks that worked fine. I think the problem came about after I downloaded the free version, and then seperately the PRO version.I then deleted the free version.Maybe I should have just upgraded it.
      The speech doesn’t work though on my HD Desire HD, but that is not so much a problem.
      Many thanks.

  4. Best Android dict. app! I use the app on my Samsung G2 and works fine.
    Got the pro version with the audio replay of the words.
    Hope soon there will be an update for displaying cantonese pingyin as well next to mandarin. That would be helpful if you are in Hong Kong. great job!

  5. I have to agree with you, this app is one of the finest I have encountered for English – Chinese translation. It’s simple to use, I can enter English, Pinyin, BoMoPoFo (I live in Taiwan where that is the standard), or even the Chinese character itself and find whatever I’m looking for quickly and effeciently. If the pro version was available for purchase in the Taiwan market I wouldn’t hesitate to spend the money.

    If you’re on Android, and you’re looking for help in learning Chinese — this program is your best bet.

    1. I have to add this, after having used the HanPing for about 9 months now. One thing I don’t care for about this is how it switches BACK TO Pinyin every time I power my phone off. I despise Pinyin passionately, as it really doesn’t work well with English users. BoMoPoFo(Zhuyin) really is far superior, and having to change the settings every day or so is very annoying. I’ve actually considered switching to Google Translate instead.

  6. Thanks for such review but i am using free version and it can not be used without inernet access.Can you please guide me how to use it offline without internet access.I mean offline.
    Thanks in advance

    1. I have never had a problem using it offline or online. I usually keep my WiFi settings turned off and my background data off as well to save on battery use, so my use is always offline primarily.

      Try saving the program to your SD card and see if that helps.

    2. There is no reason why it should not work offline or online. The latest version will not even need an internet connection for completing the initial installation. Simply install and run!

  7. I m using my iPhone 3GS n wanna install hanping lite any of the kind but u genius talks I completely didn’t got pls suggest how can I get this software install in my iphone

Comments are closed.