Doing the 10k on iOS

Had a good search for a solution but can’t find one so i’ll ask the WK braintrust.

I want to launch into doing the Core 10k but need to find the tool that works for me. I’m very mobile so it needs to work on my iPhone. I’m pretty much 100% working through WK on Tsurukame and that’s working well, I’m able to keep up with things by being able to hit my reviews anywhere any time.

What i’d Like is an SRS app that works on iOS, probably with a backend that can be acccess on the computer (web or whatever). Ideally it would work offline; I fly a reasonable ammount and planes are a great place to knock out reviews. I’d like to be able to type my answers, that really seems to work for locking things down. Other than that the more undefinable thing is an interface that works for me, hard to describe but Tsurukame is spot on in this regard.

So what are my options so far:

AnkiMobile - this may well be the solution if I customise it right but at $25 it better be right and I’m investigating other things. Do I want to spend the time making anki perform the way I want to. It seems like writing in LaTex, yes you can and get a good result but there are many ways to get good result without putting that work in. - good and getting better but the mobile experience needs some work.

Quizlet - shows some promise, SRS requires a cheap subscription

Memrise - typing is bad and they seem to be shunting all their community and individually created content into a separate web only experience and turning themselves into Duolingo.

Anyway, I’m keen to get suggestions. Let me know what you use.

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Of the options you mention I have only used Anki, so I can’t compare it to the others. But I can say that Anki is good and highly customizable. And you don’t even need LaTeX, just some HTML, for most of it. It doesn’t look fancy, but it works very well as a general-purpose SRS tool. (General-purpose in the sense that it doesn’t have any Japanese-specific features like WK does, it’s just general flashcards suitable for any subject of study, including Japanese.)

Just keep in mind that you can’t manage your decks in the iOS app, you’ll need to do that in the desktop app. The iOS app just syncs with AnkiWeb and lets you do the reviews and add/edit cards. You can make a few modifications in the mobile app, but you’ll absolutely need the desktop app to import/create and customize your decks.

If you want to try it out, just give the desktop app a spin, it’s free. If you can get the reviewing experience to suit you on the desktop, it’ll be fine on mobile as well.

Just to let you know, I’m currently looking into possible app solutions for Kitsun. No promises though


I didn’t even realise Anki did LaTeX until about five minutes after writing my post. It wasn’t more a point about not having to deal with that in this day an age. As my subscription to WK proves I am quite happy to (and prefer to) pay someone else sort this all out for me.

@neicul good to know. The offer stands about beta testing for you. I could even have a shot at writing a bunch of user stories if you wanted.

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AnkiMobile is the way to go IMO. Consider all the money you might spend in pursuit of learning a language, especially if you’re serious about it. $25 is about the cost of one textbook, and it’s the one platform that’s capable of everything all the others can do. This is especially true if you ever want to create your own study materials (which any serious learner will at some point).

I use AnkiMobile every day. I use it for school (I go to Japanese language school full-time), I use it for the worst of my Wanikani leeches, and I use the core decks two different ways. One is default reading sentences, and I’ve modified a second copy for listening practice. At some point I might setup a third one to do individual words without context, because I sometimes find that I can recognize words in the flashcard sentences, but not outside of them. You just can’t do these sorts of things outside of Anki without using a wide array of tools.

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I have both the $20 Anki for iOS as well as another flashcard program I bought recently for $4 called Flashcards Deluxe:

I didn’t really like Anki that much on iOS, but it was the only option I knew about for a long time. Flashcards Deluxe is pretty neat and customizable. It’s got some SRS modes as well as standard flash card modes. What I like about it is just the fact that it’s very well put together.

As for the syncing, I’m just now hitting the need for that myself. I’ve been creating all the decks on my iPhone but haven’t tried sharing them to my iPad yet. I only see a Dropbox option. But anyway, I’ll look into it and report back with what I find.

Also there’s an identical light version that’s great because you can try out the deck building and rules features. It just has a limit of I think 6 cards, limiting its usefulness to evaluating whether you want to spend the $4 on the real one.

Update: Neat, so it looks like you can import raw deck data from iOS Files since 2 months ago’s patch. I’m still not sure about the “Backup” option, since that requires Dropbox and I don’t want to sign up for an account. But at least for creating new decks, there’s many ways to do that with a PC.

You could always try They have a mobile app with an offline mode and are basically the source of the original 6k. They have a mix of fill in the blank, multiple choice, and listening (which may or may not work for you). But they are a bit pricey (unless you catch a sale) and their customer service is mediocre. You definitely won’t get the kind of personal experience you get with WaniKani and Kitsun.


I was initially hesitant too about Anki. By default, most decks are super ugly, it takes some time getting used to and the mobile app is not free.

I tried Memrise but soon gave up on it because I wanted to have more options for customization. Then I went to Anki and I absolutely love the flexibility and have invested quite some time in setting it up in the right way for me (custom templates, enhancing/merhing/ creating decks thanks to the csv import, subs2srs and voracious cards, wrote my own pligins, scraped some websites to put the content into anki…).

Anki is a great tool for me and I don’t think I‘ll ever switch to any other tools. However, every once in a while after solving a tricky problem I wonder how people with a less technical background are supposed to use it because it really can be a bit much. But one can at least start with shared decks and then slowly extend from there. Good thing is that the answers for most questions can be found online.

There was a code for 3 months free around new years from this WK thread. made the original core 6k. Their IOS app is decent and you have a number of choices on how you would like to go through the words such as MC, fill in the blanks, type out the reading, type after listening, or a combination.

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