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iPhone apps: English Thai Dictionaries

iPhone Thai English Dictionaries

Reviewing iPhone apps for the Thai learning market…

UPDATE: Review: English Thai iOS App Dictionaries: iPhone and iPad

NOTE: An updated series, compiled from my GINORMOUS List of iOS Apps to Learn Thai: iPhone, iPad and iPod, is coming soon. Please stay tuned.

In this series, so far I’ve reviewed Thai Language Phrase Books and Thai Alphabet and Vocabulary apps. So unless you’ve downloaded a Thai dictionary already, this review is for you.

You might notice that I included all dictionaries listed as English Thai. And the reason I did this is so that others can avoid buying/downloading a dictionary that won’t fit their needs. On the flip side, Thai students of the English language might be able to find what they need too.

The criteria I used for the iPhone English Thai dictionary review…

Many of these dictionaries are for Thais learning English, or those able to read Thai script, with the Thai script being very tiny as well. But other considerations were equally as important:

  • Help: Is there a help or tutorial section?
  • Thai script: Is the Thai script too small to read?
  • Zoom: Is a zoom to read small Thai script needed?
  • Internet connection: Do you need to be connected?
  • Design style: Does it add or subtract to the experience?
  • Tone tips: Are you given transliteration, or nothing at all?
  • Type of Dictionary: Do you get an explanation of the word, or a translation?
  • Target market: Does the app target the English market, or is it for Thais?
  • Sound: Are Thai voice files available, or are they English only?

A few more things about this review…

I realise that this is a mother of a review. And I can only imagine that it will be as tedious for some of you to read as it was cumbersome for me to write. With that in mind, here is a quick breakdown:

Dictionaries with transliteration: ClickThai Dictionary Thai-English, Dr Wit’s Library Edition, Dr Wit’s Desk Edition, Dr Wit’s Pocket Edition, English Thai Dictionary, The Thai Translator, The Thai Translator Lite, YourWords English Thai English (on some, not all).

Dictionaries with Thai sound files: ClickThai Dictionary Thai-English, The Thai Translator, The Thai Translator Lite.

Help files: ClickThai Dictionary Thai-English, English Thai English Dictionary, Thai Fast Dictionary.

Some of these dictionaries were a real bugger to get around because they were lacking in help files. And a few even stated in the iTunes store that they were easy to navigate. I wish.

Tip: If you are stumped to find that there is no Thai section, just turn on the Thai keyboard and viola! voilà! sometimes there it is.

And mystery of mysteries, the iPhone apps listed as dictionaries are all over the place.

Dictionary.com gives this definition of dictionary:

dic·tion·ar·y [dik-shuh-ner-ee] Show IPA
–noun, plural -ar·ies.
1.
a book containing a selection of the words of a language, usually arranged alphabetically, giving information about their meanings, pronunciations, etymologies, inflected forms, etc., expressed in either the same or another language; lexicon; glossary: a dictionary of English; a Japanese-English dictionary.

To explain what I mean: Search results give anything from one to a scrolling list of Thai words to choose from, and some dictionaries offer detailed definitions while others are somewhere between slim and nothing. But as the variations are many, I’ve passed on noting which dictionaries do what. Btw – only one dictionary consistently gives a single word translation: The English Thai Dictionary.

Now on to the iPhone English-Thai dictionary review…

If you have questions about any of the dictionaries, feel free to ask. Also, I will continue to add new iPhone apps to this post so if you know of any not listed, please drop me a line.

One more thing… putting together a Thai dictionary iPhone app can’t be an easy project to pull off, so I’d like to thank the programmers here. And while I do touch on some negative elements, they are merely meant to reflect an honest review.

Tip: If the Thai dictionary below has sound files in English but not in Thai, the target market is mostly Thai.

ClickThai Dictionary Thai-English

Thai English DictionaryClickThai Dictionary Thai/EnglishClickThai Dictionary Thai-EnglishClickThai Dictionary Thai-English
Price: £23.99 | $39.99
Author: ClickThai
Released: 11 Mar 2010
Version: 1.0
Size: 157 Mb
Sound: Thai
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: Yes
Zoom: No (not needed)
Rating: 12+
Help: Yes
Other dictionaries: Thai-German
Target market: English readers

  • English-Thai: 874,000 entries.
  • Thai-English: 331,000 entries.
  • Thai-Thai: 466,000 entries.

This is the top Thai dictionary with sounds in Thai (most have English). Some of the sounds are tinny (but not too bad). Regardless, the sounds are loud and clear enough to hear over workmen hammering, sawing, and drilling (my neighbour next door is renovating their condo). And while there aren’t sound files for all words/phrases, a fair bit are covered.

There are three main navigation options in this app: ‘English’, ‘transcript’, and ‘Thai’. The transcript is hit and miss as you need to learn their system (logical). The English and Thai search works fine. As with all of these apps using Thai script, in order to type in Thai you need to turn on the Thai keyboard. If you don’t know how, their instructions will walk you through the process.

When you do a search, you often get a long scrolling list of the same word (help has 28 listed). I found it time-consuming to find the word I was looking for as I would select one word, read the description, not find it, then go back to the list working my way down. When I contacted the company I was informed that in the next update the nav problem with be addressed.

Except for having to scroll through long lists of words, ClickThai is my favourite iPhone English Thai dictionary presently on the market.

Dictionary with Voice

Dictionary with VoiceDictionary with VoiceDictionary with VoiceNo longer online
Price: $0.99 | £0.59
Author: Alterme Inc
Updated: 15 Dec 2009
Version: 3.0
Size: 2.5 MB
Sound: No Thai
Help: No
Internet connection required: Sometimes
Transliteration: No
Zoom: No
Rated: 4+
Languages: English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Spanish
Target market: This apps does have Thai, but it is for the English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, or Spanish market instead.

  • Provides many dictionaries in one.
  • Read input text and the output text. (voice support)
  • Give a suggested word if there is typo.
  • Allow the change of the input language.
  • Provide web definition of the word.
  • Change voice and adjust speaker volume.
  • Parental Control provided.
  • Network is required for the dictionary but voice is built in.

This is a basic dictionary. ‘Input language’ is the language you are translating from. ‘Target language’ is the language you want the words translated to. Computer generated sound files are available if you select English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, or Spanish in your input and/or target language. But there are no sound files for Thai.

This version of the dictionary does not work with the latest iPhone update (4).

Dict Thai Plus

Thai English DictionaryThana TassanasteinkitDict ThaiDict Thai
Price: £1.19 | $1.99
Author: Thana Tassanasteinkit
Updated: 22 June 2010
Version: 1.3
Size: 7.8 MB
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: No
Zoom: No
Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

  • English to Thai and Thai to English word search.
  • Has a Bookmarks page to help you remember words.
  • Very fast for loading and searching.
  • Support grouping. You can categorize words in your own custom groups. This helps you easier to review and remember words.
  • Support email, you can email list of words and print out the list on your PC.
  • Add statistic views, so you can track your learning vocabularies progress.
  • Add more words.
  • Improve translation.
  • And more added/adding features.
  • Based in LEXITRON dictionary database developed by NECTEC.

Along the bottom nav there is ‘search’, ‘bookmark’, ‘groups’, and ‘settings’. In settings you turn on and off ‘quick search’, ‘auto bookmark’, ‘show description’, and ‘random words’. ‘Quick search’ gives a smaller return. ‘Auto bookmark’ collects all of your searches (turning it off allows you choose to which ones to save).

To use groups, create a category (I chose fruit). Then I went in search of different fruits. As the app was set to auto bookmark, I gathered in a selection and went to bookmarks, clicked on the name of each fruit (not the arrow next to the name), and then clicked on the folder to the bottom right of the screen, which allowed me to chose the fruit category.

To take a word out of bookmarks, select the word. At the bottom of the screen there are two boxes. One has ‘new’ and the other has ‘familiar’. Clicking ‘familiar’ deletes it from your bookmarks but not your groups.

Dict Thai

Thai English DictionaryThana TassanasteinkitDict ThaiDict Thai
Price: $0.99 | (but it says free on my iPhone)
Author: Thana Tassanasteinkit
Updated: 22 June 2010
Version: 3.0
Size: 7.7 Mb
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: No
Zoom: No
Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

  • English to Thai and Thai to English word search.
  • Has a Bookmarks page to help you remember words easily.
  • Very fast for loading and searching.
  • No banner.
  • More than 100,000 entries.
  • Based in LEXITRON dictionary database developed by NECTEC.

From what I could tell, the main difference between Thai Dic and the Plus version is the lack of groups. In the settings you are limited to quick search and auto bookmark.

Dr Wit’s Library Edition

Thai English DictionaryDr. Wit's Library Edition (Thai-English, English-Thai and Thai-Thai Dictionary) - C&N Solution Co., Ltd.Dr Wit's Desk EditionDr Wit's Library Edition
Author: C&N Solution Co. Ltd
Price: £10.99 | $17.99
Date: 25 April 2009
Updated: 9 Mar 2010
Version: 1.3.1
Size: 9.1 MB
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: Only in the Thai-English section
Help page: No
Zoom: No
Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

  • English-Thai More 4,000,000 entries.
  • Thai-English More 855,000 entries.
  • Thai-Thai More 855,000 entries.
  • Concise, Easy-to-understand Presentation of Information.
  • New Words survey.
  • Comprehensive, Easy-to-understand Presentation of Information.
  • Easy to Read Word Meanings with Smart Layouts.

There are two options along the bottom of the app: ‘More’ and ‘recent’. Recent shows you the words you searched for last. More has a list of three dictionaries: Eng-Thai, Thai-Eng, Thai-Thai.

There is no help page (and it is needed). But I figured out two ways to get to the options (more and recent). 1) Click the cancel button and the keyboard slides away. And 2) click Dr Wit’s head, and then click his head again.

To use the Thai-English and Thai-Thai parts of the dictionary, you need to turn on your Thai keyboard or cut and paste Thai script into the search. Typing a Thai word in Thai script gives you the word in transcription in brackets (no tone marks). Following is the definition of the word in English. Below that is an explanation in Thai script.

If you click on a Thai word from a scrolling selection, there is no transliteration for English.

When you do a search for a Thai word using the English keyboard (in the Eng-Thai section), in brackets you are given the transliteration for the English word in tiny Thai script. So tiny, the needed little bits fall off (and there is no zoom either).

Besides larger Thai script or a zoom, what would improve this dictionary would be the ability to type a word in English and get the explanation in English like is given in the Thai section. Because right now, when you type the word using the English keyboard, you are given everything in Thai.

Talen made the point that if you have a Thai other you can do a search using English and then show them the Thai script. But as I don’t have a Thai other by my side, acquiring one would turn this into a very expensive app. But what you can do instead is copy the Thai script in question and past it into the search bar. The downside is that it doesn’t always work, and when it does you can only get one definition at a time.

It is a basic dictionary. You get word searches (not phrases), and a record of the words you’ve seen recently.

Dr Wit’s Desk Edition

Dr Wit's Desk EditionDr Wit's Desk Edition (Thai-English, English-Thai and Thai-Thai Dictionary) - C&N Solution Co., Ltd.
Dr Wit's Desk EditionDr Wit's Desk Edition
Price: £3.49 | $5.99
Author: C&N Solution Co. Ltd
Date: 25 April 2009
Updated: 9 Mar 2010
Version: 1.3.1
Size: 5.2 MB
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration English: Yes (no tone marks)
Transliteration Thai: Yes
Zoom: No
Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

  • English-Thai,Thai-English,Thai-Thai.
  • English-Thai More 874,000 entries.
  • Thai-English More 331,000 entries.
  • Thai-Thai More 466,000 entries.
  • New Words survey.

Just like the Library Edition, this app includes the English-Thai, Thai-English, Thai-Thai dictionaries. Instead of around 4,000,000 entries for English-Thai, you get in the 874,000 range. But the Thai-English and Thai-Thai dictionaries are the same.

Dr Wit’s Pocket Edition

Thai English DictionaryDr Wit's Pocket Edition (Thai-English, English-Thai and Thai-Thai Dictionary) - C&N Solution Co., Ltd.Dr Wit's Pocket EditionDr Wit's Pocket Edition
Author: C&N Solution Co. Ltd
Price: £2.39 | $3.99
Date: 20 May 2009
Updated: 20 Mar 2010
Version: 1.3.1
Size: 2.0 Mb
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: No
Zoom: No
Rated: 4+
Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

  • English-Thai: 182,000 entries.
  • Thai-English: 120,000 entries.
  • Thai-Thai: 140,000 entries.

Dr Wit’s Pocket Edition is the slimmest version of the dictionary. As with the other two, except for the word count everything is the same.

Dr. Wit’s Dictionary of Thai Laws

Thai English DictionaryDr. Wit's Dictionary of Thai Laws - C&N Solution Co., Ltd.Dr. Wit's Dictionary of Thai LawsDr. Wit's Dictionary of Thai Laws
Author: C&N Solution Co. Ltd
Price: £11.99 | $19.99
Updated: 9 March 2010
Version: 1.3.1
Size: 1.5 MB
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: I’m not sure
Zoom: I’m not sure
Rated: 4+
Target market: I’m not sure

This is the only English Thai dictionary listed here that I don’t own. For me, £11.99 was too steep to just get a peek, so I passed. Someone else just might need it (desperately even), so here you go.

2 in 1 Dictionaries by Professor Dr. Wit Thiengburanathum, author of the world’s most trusted dictionaries with Thai language, world’s most definitions and most entries bilingual English-Thai, Thai-English dictionary of vocabularies in Thai laws.

  • English-Thai 177, 290 entries.
  • Thai-English 252, 900 entries.
  • Used by Microsoft for over a decade.
  • Rapid-access format.
  • Concise, easy-to-understand presentation of information.
  • New words survey.
  • Comprehensive, easy-to-understand presentation of information.
  • Built-in full functions.
  • Real time and quick lookup words.
  • Easy to read word meanings with smart layouts.

English Thai English Dictionary

Thai English DictionaryEnglish Thai English Dictionary - Clickgamer.comEnglish Thai English DictionaryEnglish Thai English Dictionary
Price: £2.39 | $3.99
Author: Clickgamer.com
Date: 12 Aug 2009
Updated: 10 Dec 2009
Version: 3.0
Size: 25.3 MB
Sound: No Thai
Help: Yes
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: No
Zoom: Yes
Target market: Thais (mostly), those who read Thai script

  • Wordlist and test module for GRE, SAT, TOEFL.
  • Thesaurus with 20,000 entries.
  • Full WordNet 3.0.
  • Google translation support.
  • Online dictionaries: Google dictionary, MobileAnswer, MobileWikipedia, WordReference.
  • English to Thai dictionary with 52,567 entries.
  • Thai to English dictionary with 35,138 entries.

This app has a help file so go there first instead of messing around like I did. Right away it was confusing because I didn’t realise you have to select the English-Thai dictionary to get Thai. Without it, all you get is English.

To access the English-Thai dictionary (and a lot of other goodies, most not needed by those of us learning Thai), click on the blue icon located on the top bar. What you’ll get is a screen with a selection of options to choose from: Wordnet (English only), Thesaurus (English only), English – Thai (bingo), GRE Vocabulary (English only), SAT Vocabulary (English only), TOEFL Vocabulary (English only), Mobil Answers (English only), Mobil Wikipedia (English only), WordReference (English only), Google English-Thai (bingo), More Google (other languages).

The navigation to the left of top nav changes to whatever you selected last from the list I just shared. But those to the right stay as is: Sound icon (English only), star icon (to save your search to favourites, or delete a favourite), speech bubble (to jot down notes on your search).

If you need to get rid of the keyboard without typing, click on the back arrow (if available) or ‘done’.

This dictionary has nice attributes. All Thai words are linked to more vocabulary. Also, you can zoom in if the Thai script is too small. Another plus are the related words and sample sentences (all in Thai). It does have transliteration in English, but it is for the English vocabulary only.

A minus is that you cannot copy and paste the Thai into your email. Well, you can, but you get garbage. This is because the standard copy iPhone bubble selection does not work in this app. For output, you get a screen with open, copy, cancel. And when you copy, you get file:/mobile/Applications… instead. I’m clueless.

The same as the Dr Wit dictionary trio above, this app is targeted at Thais learning English and intermediate to advanced students of the Thai language. With the resources heavy on the English side, Thais will get more out of this dictionary than their English counterparts. A beginner of the Thai language would need another dictionary or a Thai mate glued to their side.

English English Thai Dictionary

English English Thai DictionaryEnglish English Thai DictionaryEnglish English Thai DictionaryNo longer online
Price: £2.99 | $4.99
Author: McHahm Inc
Date: 2 July 2009
Updated: 18 Sep 2009
Version: 2.5
Size: 54.6 MB
Sound: No Thai
Help: No
Internet connection required: No
Transliteration: No
Zoom:
Target market: Thais (but others can use it as well)
Rated: 4+

Kernerman English English Thai Dictionary is a semi-bilingual English learner’s dictionary for speakers of Thai. It consists of a full English-English dictionary core including a precise translation of each sense of the entry to Thai.The user is thus encouraged to immerse in the English language, while being actively supported by the Thai translation.

  • Human voice audio pronunciation for English headwords.
  • Today’s quiz & quiz results history.
  • Bookmark.
  • Search history.
  • Headwords: 25,000 / Sample sentences: 30,000.

When you start this dictionary you get a screen with the search bar across the top. Across the bottom there is: Search, bookmark, quiz, and info. The first two are logical, the quiz is for those aiming ti increase their English vocabulary, and the info gives information about the company. There is no help file. The search results comes up with the targe word in English, definition in English, the translation in Thai, and sample sentence in English. Also included is sound for the English word.

Thais aiming to learn English might do well out of this dictionary. Although this is targeting Thais learning English, I found the sentence samples useful.

English Thai Dictionary

English Thai DictionaryEnglish Thai dictionary - AanthaiAanthai English Thai DictionaryAanthai English Thai Dictionary
Price: £5.99 | $9.99
Author: Aanthai
Date: 8 Dec 2008
Updated: 5 Jan 2009
Version: 1.1
Size: .4 MB
Sound: No
Help: No
Internet connection required:
Transliteration: Yes
Zoom: No
Target market: English readers

  • 7,000 individual words.
    • In addition to English, the dictionary consists of Thai and phonetics.
    • The dictionary has search feature that makes it easy to find just the words you are missing.
    • The Phonetics standard is the same used in ‘Thai for beginners’ and other Paiboon publishing books.
    • Phonetics takes advantage of the markings of vowels to indicate tones.
  • This app opens at a scrolling list of words in English, with tiny Thai script below. You cannot zoom in to the script. On the far right of the screen is an alphabet nav. This is where you can jump to the beginning letter of the alphabet to start your scrolling search there. Clicking on a word takes you to the word in English (large) with translation in small Thai script below, and below that is a transliteration of the word in English. On each page you get instructions on how to use the phonetics.

    There are two ways to access the keyboard to conduct a word search in English. Scroll to the top of the list, or click on the question mark above the alphabet nav in the grey band. You cannot search using Thai script.

    This is a simple app that would be easy to improve: Increase the Thai script.

    EnThai Dictionary

    Thai English DictionaryEnThai Dictionary - Chitrlada ChanbaiEnThai DictionaryEnThai Dictionary
    Price: £2.99 | $4.99
    Author: AtiSoft LLC
    Date: 11 Sept 2008
    Updated: 22 2008
    Version: 1.1.0
    Size: 3.1 mg
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: Yes
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    EnThai is an English to Thai dictionary with more than eighty thousand words and phases. It is simple and easy to use and based on the popular LEXiTRON dictionary database developed by NECTEC.

    • EnThai contains more than 80000 words and phases.
    • Support wildcard search.
    • Display Thai vowels position correctly based on contextual.
    • Index view shows every word in the dictionary for browsing.
    • Remember last search in Recents view.
    • Easily navigate to the next word using up/down button.

    The nav is across the bottom of the app: Search, index, recents, info. Search brings up the keyboard (Thai keyboard is not utilized). Index gives you a scrolling list with the alphabet nav on the right (similar to one above). Recents shows the latest searches. Info is information about the company. There is no help page.

    Select a word or phrase and a page comes up with the word in English, Thai script below (no English transliteration, just Thai), and depending what the word is (noun, verb, etc, and if there are any synonym’s or antonym’s included), additional information after that. At the top of the definition page there are three nav options: Index (obvious), and up and down arrows that take you to the next or the previous word on the list.

    The Thai script is small but you can zoom in to your heart’s content. You cannot tilt the phone on its side to get the wide screen.

    English-Thai Talking Dictionary

    iDictEnglish-Thai Talking Dictionary - LingvoSoftEnglish-Thai Talking DictionaryEnglish-Thai Talking Dictionary
    Price: $7.99 | £4.99
    Author: LingvoSoft
    Released: 16 Feb 2010
    Version: 1.2
    Size: 25 Mb
    Sound: No Thai
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Rated: 4+
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    A talking bidirectional dictionary that features advanced functionality and up to 1,000,000 entries.

    The Dictionary contains an extensive vocabulary, a choice of 5 display languages, advanced TTS (text-to-speech) voice capabilities, and unique User’s Dictionaries.

    • Advanced TTS (text-to-speech) functionality.
    • Customizable interface (toolbars, font settings, colors, etc.)
    • English, French, German, Spanish and Russian display language options.
    • Convenient Virtual Keyboard helps you to enter special and language specific symbols.
    • Quick paste and translate (translates a selected word in other application with just one click).
    • Personalized User Dictionaries (create, add, and edit you own personal dictionaries).
    • Input Line search finds any word matching the sequence of symbols you enter.
    • History function to view and select previously entered words.

    When you open this nav you get a search bar across the top, scrolling list of words below, and a bottom nav. The nav consists of: Arrows which toggles the word list between English and Thai, a magnifying glass that brings up a search bar, a book icon that gives you a history of your last searches, a round icon where you set your preferences. In the preferences you can play with: Language (English, French, German, Spanish and Russian), explanations (turn them on and off), search mode (fragment or word), and a company page is tagged on the far end.

    The sound is English only, so the main target of this app is the Thai market, but readers of Thai can use it as well. The ability to chose French, German, Spanish or Russian only applies to the display language, not the dictionary words and phrases.

    It’s quite a well linked app as clicking on words will take you to another set of words in the opposing language: English to Thai / Thai to English.

    There is no transliteration and no zoom, so that totally nixes out those who cannot read tiny Thai script, or any script at all. If for students of the Thai language, I would put this at the intermediate level.

    It mentions the ability to personalise your own dictionary, but I cannot find that option. I contacted the company and they said that it is a typo.

    iDict

    iDictiDictiDictNo longer online
    Price: Free
    Author: labs.thomaskiesl.de
    Date: 3 May 2009
    Updated: 18 Dec 2009
    Version: 1.4
    Size: 2.5 Mb
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: Yes
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Rated: 4+
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    • Translate between 51 different languages.
    • Translate words, complete sentences, and complete web pages.
    • Keeps a history of last translations and translated web pages.
    • Capabilities to send the translated text via email.
    • Flip easily between languages.

    Please note: The application is based on the ‘Google Translate API’ therefor Google is responsible for the quality of the translations.

    This application is labeled ‘dictionary’ but it should be in the translation section at iTunes instead.

    When you first get into the app you need to set your two languages of choice. I of course selected English and Thai. Sometimes it remembers your settings when you next open the app, but not always. Across the top you’ll see country flags with you input country on the left and your target country on the right. There is a flip button to switch the direction of translation. So all you do is type in your word, click ‘translate’, and the translation appears in the box on the bottom in the script of the country (no transliteration). If you like what you see, click on the email icon (bottom left) to send an email.

    On the bottom nav there is: ‘Translation’, ‘webpage’, ‘languages’, and ‘history’. Translation is the landing page I just described. On ‘webpage’ you type in a url of choice and it connects to google translate (you can flip the screen to get a wider view). It will translate the webpage to whatever you have set. And as it’s a slow bugger in Thailand, be sure to remember that before you head out. ‘Languages’ is where you set your target language by spinning the cylinder or clicking on flags. ‘History’ not only saves what words you’ve seen lately, but the webpages as well.

    The app is free, but if you pay a teensy amount to upgrade, the ad comes off the bottom of the app.

    Longdo Dict

    Longdo DictLongdo Dict - Metamedia Technology Co., Ltd.Longdo DictLongdo Dict
    Price: Free
    Author: Longdo Dictionary
    Date: 31 Aug 2009
    Updated: 25 Mar 2010
    Version: 1.1.0
    Size: 91.1 MB
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: Yes
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Rated: 4+
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    Longdo Dict is an iPhone client to Longdo online dictionary service at http://dict.longdo.com/. It provides access to multiple bilingual dictionaries between Thai and non-Thai (English/Japanese/French/Chinese/etc) languages.

    Longdo Dict client on iPhone features a fast full-text head word suggestion, with search history and random word of the day.

    On Longdo nav you get: ‘Search’, ‘news’, ‘settings’, and ‘about’. ‘Search’ is obvious (you type using the keyboard that pops up), news covers what Longdo is up to. ‘Settings’ is where you can clear history and news, and turn ‘show random word’ on and off. ‘About’ is a page detailing what makes Longdo tick (what dictionaries it uses, etc).

    When you search for a word, a long scrolling list comes up with samples from all of the dictionaries. Some of the words are linked, taking you to more words. There is the ability to copy and paste results into your email for afters. It does not zoom in and the Thai script is tiny, but the Thai script is clear enough for those with decent eyesight and already have an idea of the words.

    Truthfully, I’m not the one to review this dictionary as I’ve always found it difficult to make sense of. If you live in your left brain, then you might have better luck.

    Multilingual Dictionary SE Asia

    Thai English DictionaryMultilingual Dictionary SE AsiaMultilingual Dictionary SE AsiaNo longer online
    Price: £7.49 | $12.99
    Author: McHahm Inc
    Date: 20 Aug 2009
    Version: 1.0
    Size: 56.2
    Sound: No Thai
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: Yes
    Target market: Those learning English

    The dictionary consists of an English-English core with translations in the eight major languages used in South East Asia: Hindi, Urdu, Thai, Vietnamese, Malay, Indonesian, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese. Each sense of the entry has a short and clear definition in English, and translation equivalents in the eight languages.

    The application offers human voice pronunciation for the 24,000 English headwords and expressions, and includes lists of bookmarked words and of recently searched words. It is a particularly helpful learning tool for intermediate-level users.

    This dictionary is for those learning English, so I won’t describe it further here. Also, it does not work the way explained (only English shows on the screen).

    QuickDic Thai-English Dictionary

    QuickDic Thai-English DictionaryQuickDictQuickDic Thai-English DictionaryQuickDic Thai-English Dictionary
    Price: £1.19 | $1.99
    Author: QuickDict KK Studio
    Date: 10 July 2010
    Version: 1.0
    Size: 6.0 MB
    Sound: No
    Help: Yes
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: Yes (you can enlarge the font size)
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    • High-quality Thai-English and English-Thai dicts
    • No need for internet connection
    • Very handy, very fast
    • Spell checking for both languages, very useful!
    • Fuzzy search using “?” for any single character or “@” for any number of characters
    • Infinite-level inverse search
    • Bookmark and history
    • Adjustable font size
    • Landscape support

    I quite like this simple little dictionary. It does not have sound, but it does have extras (read the list above). It starts up with the keyboard (your choice, English or Thai script). As soon as you start typing, an alphabetized list appears in either English or Thai. If you have poor eyesight, you can set the results font to be larger (but it does not affect the search list). The nav is logical. Within the search list the nav includes: Home, search, history, bookmark and help. Once you select a name, spell check is added. Yes, it has a spell check for both English and Thai.

    Quick Dic Thai Dictionary

    Thai English DictionaryQuick Dic Thai DictionaryQuick Dic Thai DictionaryNo longer online
    Price: £1.79 | $2.99
    Author: quetouch.com
    Date: 24 April 2009
    Updated: 11 Aug 2009
    Version: 1.3
    Size: 17.2 mb
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    Quik Dict is an bilingual dictionaries integrated English-Thai and Thai-English dictionary. It real time fast lookup and easy to use. Using first few letter for real time fast lookup word. Build-in full function Thai input for search Thai word.

    • English-Thai, more than 80,000 Words and phase include relate, examples, and synonyms.
    • Thai-English, more than 50,000 Words and phase.
    • Real time and quick lookup word.
    • Support Thai input by build in fully function thai keyboard. (iPhone OS 2.x)
    • Support International Thai Keyboard on iPhone OS 3.0.
    • Easy to read word meaning with smart layout.

    The fun part of this dictionary is that it starts off with ‘er indoors’.

    Nav: ‘More’ only shows you the dictionaries they use. ‘Recents’ shows the search history. Inside the dictionary you get ‘previous’ and ‘next’ word.

    You can search by English, or by Thai script (to do the Thai search, switch keyboard to Thai). This dictionary uses LEXiTRON 2.0 and WordNet 3.0. LEXiTRON give (mostly) Thai and WordNet the English explanation, stacked.

    Glitches: When I started using the Thai keyboard, the next word arrow changed the Thai word on the top banner but not in the search. With the keyboard visible and a word in search, the words I click on are not the words appearing in the next screen. The scroll in both English and Thai sticks sometimes.

    There is no transliteration, so the target is for those who read Thai. There are no instructions. The Thai script is small, but legible (some of the bits fall out, but not as bad as other dictionaries).

    Thai Dict Version

    Thai English DictionaryThai Dict - True Move Company LimitedThai Dict VersionThai Dict Version
    Price: Free
    Author: True Corp Co., Ltd
    Date:15 Jan 2009
    Updated: 19 Mar 2010
    Version: 3.2
    Size: 9 MB
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    English-Thai Dictionary is well designed English to Thai dictionary and Thai to English dictionary based on popular LEXITRON dictionary database developed by NECTEC.

    • English to Thai dictionary and Thai to English dictionary.
    • Over 80,000 words.
    • Keep search history.

    This is True Move’s dictionary application.

    Nav: ‘i’ has information about the company, not information on how to use the app. The search bar is the typical typing area. The magnifying glass brings up the top search bar. ‘History’ shows recent English and Thai words and gives you the ability to delete history items.

    Nav on results screen: ‘Back’, ’email’, ‘search’, and ‘history’. Across the bottom of each page is a flashing ad.

    If you type using the English keyboard, an English word with Thai explanation, next to it English comes up. If you type using the Thai keyboard, a Thai word with the English explanation, next to it Thai comes up. Clicking on words on search results pages does not take you further into the dictionary. No sound. No transliteration. No zooming.

    With no transliteration, this app is target to Thais and intermediate-advanced readers of Thai.

    Thai English Dictionary

    Thai English DictionaryThai English DictionaryThai English DictionaryNo longer online
    Price: £0.59 | $0.99
    Author: Alterme Inc
    Date: 22 May 2009
    Updated: 22 Dec 2009
    Version: 3.4
    Size: 2.5
    Sound: Sound did not work
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: Sometimes
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Target market: Thais with good eyesight?

    • English Thai, Thai English Dictionary, English English Dictionary.
    • Build-in English Text to Speech.
    • Word suggestion.

    It is a dictionary between English and Thai. It can read any text in English. However, Thai text to speech is not supported.

    This dictionary is the same as Dictionary with Voice (reviewed above).

    Nav: ‘VK’ is the virtual keyboard. ‘Look up’ is for after you type in your target word. The round icon to the right is where you select your input language.

    The virtual keyboard must be a left over from when we couldn’t access the iPhone keyboards, so it is no longer needed.

    When you do a search, the screen that comes up has the English or Thai, but not your target word.

    There is tiny Thai script and the app does not zoom. The sound did not work for me. And there are is no transliteration. This app needs work.

    Thai Fast Dictionary

    Thai Fast DictionaryThai Fast DictionaryThai English DictionaryThai English Dictionary
    Price: Free
    Author: Tanut Apiwong
    Date: 10 June 2010
    Updated: 18 Jun 2010
    Version: 1.0
    Size: 3.9 mb
    Sound: No
    Help: Yes
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: No
    Zoom: No
    Target market: Thais, those who read Thai script

    • Fast application startup.
    • Fast word lookup.
    • History and Favorite mode.
    • Long list words scrollable table.

    This product is created by the adaptation of LEXiTRON developed by NECTEC (http://www.nectec.or.th/).

    A free app, there is an ad across the bottom. The nav has: ‘Search’, ‘favourite’, ‘search history favourite’.

    The Thai script is legible (to me). The English keyboard brings up Thai translation. The Thai keyboard brings up English translation. There is no zoom. No sound. No transliteration. This is a simple app but you need to be able to read Thai.

    The Thai Translator

    The Thai TranslatorThe Thai TranslatorThe Thai TranslatorNo longer online
    Price: £5.99 | $9.99
    Author: Ncephalon Corp Pte Ltd
    Updated: 22 Feb 2010
    Version: 1.2
    Size: 77.6 MB
    Sound: Thai
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: Yes
    Zoom: No
    Rated: 4+
    Target market: Beginning students of Thai and up, Thais

    The Thai Translator is an essential Thai dictionary or translator tool for both English speaking and Thai speaking users. TTT translates from both English to Thai and Thai to English. It even allows you to search by the transliterations!

    You will find many practical features in TTT that are not found in other translators or dictionaries, namely; Transliteration, Audio and Multiple Word Search.

    • Thai Audio and English Audio.
    • Transliteration.
    • Thai Keyboard Support.
    • Search by English, Thai or Transliteration.
    • Multiple Word Search.
    • Partial Word Search.
    • Simple phrases eg. What time?, How are you?, I am fine.

    This is another mislabeled app as it leans more towards the dictionary side than translation. Translation gives you the ability to drop in any word, while dictionaries have set words.

    After the slow loading splash screen there is a page to register. It’s annoying, but it is supposed to be gone in the next revision. After, you get a page to choose English-Thai and Thai-English.

    Selecting English-Thai, you get a search screen with ‘back’, ‘by English’, ‘by translation’, and a back button. The translation results gives you English with a sound icon. Next down is ‘pronunciation’ where the transliteration for the Thai script further below is shown. The Translation in Thai script sometimes has a sound icon. The Thai script is small. There is no zoom. Some of the sounds are distorted (especially the English). And not all words have sound.

    The Thai Translator Lite

    The Thai Translator LiteThe Thai TranslatorThe Thai TranslatorNo longer online
    Price: Free
    Author: Ncephalon Corp Pte Ltd
    Updated: 17 Feb 2010
    Version: 1.1
    Size: 45.2 MB

    Full access to alphabets A – I

    The Thai Translator Lite is a lite version of the popular TTT.

    The Thai Translator is an essential Thai dictionary or translator tool for both English speaking and Thai speaking users. TTT translates from both English to Thai and Thai to English. It even allows you to search by the transliterations!

    You will find many practical features in TTT that are not found in other translators or dictionaries, namely; Transliteration, Audio and Multiple Word Search.

    YourWords English Thai English travel and learning dictionary…

    YourWords English Thai English travel and learning dictionaryThe Thai TranslatorThe Thai TranslatorNo longer online
    Price: $2.99 | £1.79
    Author: Ncephalon Corp Pte Ltd
    Updated: 30 Apr 2010
    Version: 1.0
    Size: 1 MB
    Sound: No
    Help: No
    Internet connection required: No
    Transliteration: On some, not all
    Zoom: No
    Rated: 4+
    Target market: Thais, those who can read Thai

    Over 11500 definitions. No internet connection required (ideal when traveling). History and Quizzes to help your remember new words. As you type suggestions for quick searching.

    Everyone who has ever studied a second language knows the challenge involved in trying to increase “word power”.
    “Your words” is here to help you overcome this challenge as well as to provide an easy to use dictionary for your travels.

    • Contains more than 11500 Words.
    • It provides real time suggestions for easier and faster searches.
    • You can dig into an Archive section for an easy access to previously searched words.
    • You can challenge yourself by taking Quizzes.

    Nav: Across the top you get the search bar. Along the bottom you get ‘En search’, ‘Th search’, ‘archive’, and ‘quiz’.

    As with the majority of the apps, to search in Thai, turn on your Thai keyboard. Ditto for ‘En search’. The quiz is created from your searches.

    This dictionary has promise, but there are missing important words and odd errors. But he plans on adding 3000 more words, so hopefully the glitches will be addressed then.

    iPhone Three-Way Talking Thai Dictionary…

    All through this review I’ve been writing, ‘too small’, ‘too quirky’, ‘not enough’, etc. It is early days in the iPhone app market, sure, so I haven’t really been that fussed. I know that programmers need time to get their heads around what is needed, and taking on Thai dictionaries is not a dawdle.

    I’m going to end this review with the promise of a fabulous dictionary coming this year, the iPhone version of Chris Pirazzi and Benjawan Poomsan Becker’s software dictionary. If you haven’t read my thoughts, please do: Review: Three-Way Talking Thai Dictionary: Mac and PC

    The iPhone version:

    • It will be a three-way dictionary with three sections, as the Windows product is.
    • It will have the same high-quality Thai sound recordings of a native Thai (Kun Benjawan!) as the Windows product, and it will be possible for users to store those sounds on the iPhone itself, so that the user can play any sound even if he or she is not currently connected to the Internet.
    • It will support multiple pronunciation guide systems, just as the Windows product does.
    • It will feature the same dataset (vocabulary, entry details, classifiers, stress, etc.) as the Windows product.
    • When we double the size of our dataset in 2010, we will offer that as a free upgrade to iPhone users just as we do for Windows-based users.

    Their coming iPhone dictionary app sounds great, yes?

    EDIT: It’s here and it’s clearly the top Thai dictionary for iPhone so be sure to get a copy too!

    Learn Thai on Your iPhone: What’s next…

    What’s next? Following will be an exciting range of flash card apps for the iPhone.

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    My passion is promoting the Thai language. Fullstop. Oh, and traveling. I'm passionate about that as well. And photography too.

    29 Comments

    1. Awesome post as always, Cat. The best I’ve used so far is Dr. Wit’s, but admittedly I haven’t tried all of these yet. I’m going to check a few of these out thanks to you!

    2. Wow Cat…I don’t know where you find the time to do such a massive amount of detailed work investigating each of these apps. Without a doubt you have become the resource for Thai language iPhone apps.

    3. Thanks Josh. The app designers have made decent inroads into Thai dictionaries, but no one is ‘just right’ just yet. And after getting sound files, that’s what is on my wishlist for any Thai dictionary.

      Talen, this was the most tedious one in the series to write, for sure. And the endless rereading and edits are not over yet.

      But my biggest headache so far is trying to find what is making my code go wonky. There is a ` that is pushing the copy away from the thumbnail on the homepage and in the nav. It’s not in my copy, so it is driving me crazy trying to find it.

    4. Very fine article, but what about WeDict Pro? I’ve been using this Thai/English English/Thai dictionary for quite a while on my iPhone and it’s very good.

    5. Richard, the app store says that WeDict Pro has Chinese and English. How are you getting Thai?

    6. You can download many other dictionaries. They have Thai/English, English/Thai, Vietnamese, Irregular English words, WordNet, Longman, Oxford. I think they are all free, but I’m not certain. It’s quite a good app.

    7. Ok, Thanks. I’ll check it out. It’s expensive and the reviews are quite harsh so I had to ask. So far, I’ve only wanted to return one app (I’ll write about that later).

    8. The Thai dictionaries are the Lexitron — same as used by many other apps and mysteriously missing many common words (ยินดี for example).

    9. So why do you like this particular dictionary? It’s more expensive than others.

    10. Richard, I have the dictionary. I downloaded two – Lexitron and Longdo – and none are showing up. Did you do anything else besides download?

    11. Hi, great site. I, upon your recommendation downloaded click-Thai. I am interested in the Dr Witt but cant really tell by your description is there is transliteration in Thai when looking up the word in English. I cannot read Thai script well enough and need the transliteration in English. The photo included doesn’t show it.

      thanks

    12. Hi Jimmy. Thanks. For each review, you’ll see a list of attributes that start right under the name/logo.

      Price, Author, Date, Updated, Version, Size, Sound, Help, Internet connection required, Transliteration, Zoom, Rated, Target market.

      For all of Dr Witt’s products – Transliteration Thai: Yes

    13. Heads up: A new app has been added – QuickDic Thai-English Dictionary

    14. It appears to be using the same Lexitron engine as WeDic and some other apps. (The Thai-English page in the sample at iTunes is identical with the WeDict app. for the same word).

    15. Yes, a lot do use Lexitron, but most say say so. I’m surprised that this one does not. Btw – I still can’t get WeDic to work.

    16. You’re right, Catherine, there seems to be no mention of the usage of Lexitron. But it surely does use it.

      I really wish I had an answer to your WeDic problem. My only suggestion would be to get an expert (a teenager at one of the phone shops MBK, say) and show him the problem. I’ve had good luck with that.

      Richard

    17. Ah. Yes. Teenagers are great for helping out. I’m not a lover of MBK, but I can check out the other shops around.

    18. Cathrine,

      Thanks so much for this fantastic resource. Your hard work must have saved a lot of people (myself included) a lot of time and aggravation downloading programs without phonetic translations. I found it so odd that the electronic translators sold in Thai stores are the same. It just seems like something that would naturally be included.

      In any case, I found this today and thought you might be interested in checking it out if you havent already. http://download.cnet.com/English-Thai-English-Dictionary/3000-20428_4-10966808.html At $4 its pretty cheap, but the description doesn’t mention phonetics leading me to think it probably doesnt have it. Not sure if I want to risk $4 to find out, hoping maybe you know something about it before I tried it.

      Thanks,
      -Rick

    19. Hi Rick. Welcome to WLT, and thanks for the kind words.

      In the review above, look for ‘English Thai English Dictionary’, author Clickgamer.com.

      I purchased all of the Thai dictionaries to write the review, but I only use one. To check their recent update, I turned it on.

      It’s still the same (only better). A great little app, it continues to be aimed at the Thai market. It does not have Thai transliteration.

    20. Hi Catherine,

      It would have saved me a lot of time had I found your review earlier. I spent yesterday going through many of these and was a bit stuck concluding ClickThai appeared best but at a high price. So I wanted to make sure and your review confirmed it will be worthwhile for me. I was particularly confused by Lingvosoft which IMO deceptively advertises the product as if it has Thai sound. My other pet peeve, which is front and center in your clear review, is the tendency for most commercial products to make the Thai script tiny. What is up with that? Its just plain dumb IMO. One extra bit that would perhaps be worth adding to your review is whether they function in landscape mode. Thanks for the great review!

    21. One more thing I forgot to mention. There is a new app out called Collins Mini Gem that looks promising. You may want to check it out.

    22. Hi Brian, I agree that it’s totally crazy to have tiny Thai script when the target market is for English speakers. I’m not sure what the Thais are saying (but I will ask). Trying to read English even on iPhones in the wrong light is difficult and English doesn’t have those tiny squiggles top and bottom! Landscape – good point…

      Thanks for the heads-up on Collins Mini Gem. I’m downloading the dictionary now for a review.

      The only dictionay I have on my iPhone at the moment is ClickThai. When Benjawan and Chris’ dictionary comes out I’ll compare either the two together, or Collins as well if it’s in the running.

    23. I will look for an update in the future. But I am very happy with the ClickThai so far. Sound, sensible transliteration with tone markers, and reasonably sized beautiful thai script. Simple and clean with a lot of content (150mb!). I would not mind seeing ability to increase the font size in the future, and getting the info button out of the way, but that is nit picky and it is quite nice as is. I am new to this mobile format stuff and just picked up an iTouch about 4 days ago. So my comment about landscape perhaps is not so relevant. I suspect I won’t use that mode so much once I get used to the keyboard? At any rate thanks again for putting together this great review.

    24. Catherine,
      Fantastic update 2.0 to Click Thai English now. Short definitions are now given in the listings to more easily direct you to the proper word, and you can thumb through the meanings without going back to the list. It is also a bit easier to not mistakenly hit the info button when deleting the search field (although still too easy IMO)

    25. After working with 2.0 Click Thai English a bit more it is really really nice now. The only negative I really have is that it does not do the best job of putting the most relevant and common definitions first, although that is their intention. Nonetheless it is an awesome bit of software.

    26. It looks great, but I wish it weren’t so expensive. Since I can read and write Thai, I really have no use for the transliteration, but the other features look quite good.

      Of all the ones I have tried, I like QuickDict the best. It is really fast on my new iPhone 4 and opens right up with the keyboard, which is what I always want.

    27. http://www.paiboonpublishing.com/info/product/new-talking-dictionary-app-for-iphone/

      This one looks to be the best in my opinion… I have read the books from this publisher… The teaching style and transliteration are simple and easy to understand… We use the paper dictionary at home all the time as it allows either me or my wife to look up words for explanation during conversation… =]

    28. Also you can install
      Dictionary Universal program

      and download all
      Thai dictionaries

    29. Thanks. I’m writing a new series, starting with Thai dictionaries (just waiting for the remaining apps to update to iOS 7).

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