Reading Manga with 'Nihongo' app

Hi everyone,

So I’ve recently decided to start reading some Manga that I’ve bought that I really want to read and it’s been great motivation to finally kick-start my reading practice properly. Looking for some advice however on what would be the best way of looking up unknown Kanji/words whilst reading a Manga. I appreciate it’ll have some downtime since at Level 13 only I will need to look things up a lot. I’ve recently downloaded an app called ‘Nihongo’ which is helpful but I’m finding it a little hit or miss as to whether it’ll identify the Kanji from a photo of the page. Are there any well known apps that are best to aid with this that I might not be aware of?

Thanks in advance!

I recommend starting out. You can look up individual radicals for kanji then eventually when you’re more comfortable, use


If it has furigana you can usually throw that into a dictionary app like takoboto on your phone. They show different kanji combinations if applicable.


You may want to read this guide,


if you read on computer there is a script that changes the pages into html and then you can check meaning with yomichan.

Looks very useful.

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Creator of Nihongo here :slightly_smiling_face:

If you have any specific photos it’s having trouble with, I’d love it if you could send it my way! I’m always trying to improve it. You can shoot me an email if you’d like at chris [at]

My own sense is right now it’s pretty good at kanji, but it actually can be pretty bad at handling hiragana-only words. I have plans to improve this in a future update. Would love to hear more of your experience.

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Hi there, thanks for the response.

I hope my post didn’t come across flippant in any way. I’ve been trialling a lot of different apps and I’ve stuck with ‘Nihongo’ as it honestly looks more pro than the others and been thinking about going premium once the trial runs out. After trying it a little more I’ve been finding that it’s great with Kanji as you mention (rarely will it not identify these). Sometimes Hiragana and Katakana can be missed. It’s a minor issue though as I can find a workaround.

I’ve provided a photo example for you to see.

Great job on such a great app.

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Nice, thanks! Yeah, looks like the same kind of issues I see in my own usage. It’s actually not a problem with the OCR as much as it’s a problem with taking that text and matching it to words in the dictionary. You’ll see the same issue if you were to make a clipping with the same text. I have a new text parser in the works that should improve things, aiming to get it out later this year!

If you run into any other issues or have any more feedback don’t hesitate to reach out. :slightly_smiling_face:

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