Kanji on mobile devices

If you write in Japanese on your mobile device, you are probably familiar with this:
The Kanji are diplayed in their Chinese way of writing.

I’ve done some searching and it seems that there is no easy way to change that exept for changing the language of the device to Japanese, or rooting it and then changing the font or whatevs.
I’m hesitant to root my phone though.

People with more experience in this: How did you go about it?

  • I rooted my phone.
  • I changed the language to Japanese.
  • There is a simpler way, you just need to …
  • Other

0 voters

Any advice is welcome!

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Mostly, just dealing with it. Some apps that are geared towards Japanese will have the proper settings to use the JP fonts. Web pages should have tags or font stacks that will prefer the JP kanji. Or, you just learn to recognize the Chinese variants occasionally :frowning:

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I just learn both versions of the kanji. Those which are sometimes displayed in their chinese version are also kanji you might encounter in other situations.

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When I had a Galaxy S4 (M919) I first switched over to Japanese because fun practice, then when I rooted I went ahead and switched up the ordering.

Got an S7 Edge (SM-935T) and the ordering is already correct, bless. No root needed. It’s not a big deal because it’s only a handful of kanji really but a nice little bonus when you read a lot of Japanese.

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I just deal with it as well. Honestly didn’t even realize that Chinese ones were appearing…

Though I am rooted… wonder if it’d be worthwhile to switch things up.

That’s right, I forgot to add “Deal with it” to the poll.

Maybe I’ll do that.

This is probably a very silly question, but is rooting irreversable?

Maybe I can root my phone, make the Kanji look right, and then “un-root” it?

If you want, it’s a pretty easy thing to do…I think. Not sure if it depends on your phone. It’s been a while since I did it. All you have to do is go in and edit the file to switch the ordering up.

You can undo root. If you don’t mess with recovery, then usually once you get an OTA update it will cause you to lose root access. But I just use a custom ROM and maintain it myself. I enjoy that experience much better than stock operating system. Nowadays there are many guides to walk you through it.

Generally it will wipe your device, so you have to back everything up first.


Even easier than that now.
This app requires root, BUT, it has this in the first line of app description:

####NOTE: This is no longer required on Android 7.0+. Instead add Japanese to your language list in Settings > Languages & input > Languages to show the correct Kanji across all apps.

Worked like a charm.



In anki, which is where I feel it matters the most, I just added a japanese font globally.

Otherwise I just deal with it. They’re similar enough that they make sense in context.

Interestingly, a hellotalk correspondent said they get similar issues when using chinese-developed software in Japan.

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Also, if you want a great device for a decent price AND easy customization, I highly recommend a OnePlus device. I have the OnePlus 3 and it’s fantastic. Also a great community if you want to root and run stable custom software. The OnePlus 1 is even still supported after 3 years. Even has Nougat.



Tried both when i had my note 2 i did have it in japanese now on Iphone i kept it in English with japanese apps.

@alexbeldan ok. Nougat supported on an Android device from 2014? I’m so impressed it hurts.

@SebasHollow how could it get better??? this is too great. is there a version where he’s sprinkling cats. I must know for reasons.


/cries in Android 5.1.1


6.0.1 here

Ah so close! That hurts even more haha

I also have 6.something.
And rooting doesn’t do it for me.