What’s the deal with Bunpo?

こんにちは! from the guy who created the super sweet Yokai Appreciation! thread.

Anyway in short, what’s the deal with Bunpo? I’ve been using several different resources to learn, and noticed all are good for something different. Wanikani for vocab, Human Japanese for basic grammar and Japan facts, Duolingo to practice sentences, and random other stuff. I’ve been hearing a lot about Bunpo though and decided to download the app. From what I can tell, it doesn’t look especially deep. The trial can only tell so much though. Does anyone know what’s it actually like, and is it worth the $30 lifetime payment?

My sources from the spirit world are unclear… maybe I could consult the Kudan… but I must first consult my fellow disciples of the Crabigator of course!

1 Like

I think you must have mistaken Bunpo with Bunpro. Bunpro is a Grammar based SRS system that functions similar to WaniKani and it doesn’t have an application, only a website.


Just to get it clarified immediately, you have heard a lot about Bunpo, and not Bunpro?

Most people here talk about Bunpro, though some people have used Bunpo as well, I believe.

Bunpro was started by a WK user (or at least they posted about it here while developing it) and that’s why lots of people use and recommend it.

Bunpo has only been mentioned in a few topics I can recall, and apparently it varies a lot based on which platform you have.


On the chance you did mean Bunpo, I use it, and paid the $30 for lifetime because that was a reasonable price for me to afford.

Like you mentioned, the trial can only show you so much. I got the lifetime to see what all it could do.

I like it as a refresher for lessons I was taught 10 years ago but forgot. I like the optional SRS of grammar points. I like that I can practice sentence creation through typing on my phone. I like when numbers go up: I maxed out beginner and N5. Now that I’m starting N4, it’s all the grammar I’ve forgotten. We’ll see how much I still like the app when it’s no longer easy-peasy for me :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

but I also use it along with a number of other apps, so it’s not my only tool.


I remember people talking about Bunpo a year or two ago when it was free. I checked it out back then and it was decent but lacked content.

I have used both Bunpo and Bunpro to about N4 level maybe 2 years ago? Since then it looks like Bunpro has made a lot of updates.

Bunpro is just a SRS system. It’s not a bad option if you want grammar review flashcards. They also link to websites to get explanations for grammar points so it’s helpful if you are trying to learn through Bunpro. I took a look and it seems like they have have a study feature, but I don’t remember this part.

Bunpo explains the grammar more thoroughly, but if the explanations aren’t good enough they don’t link to external resources so you would have to look it up on your own. Bunpo also has a lot more activities to reinforce the grammar though. It also contains images, which breaks up the wall of texts.

Personally I liked Bunpo more. It felt more robust and was more than just another SRS system. However I decided against paying for either of them. I was looking for a tool to reinforcement grammar I was learning. Both help with this, but my issue is that sometimes you just “memorize” the sentences rather than actually learning the grammar. At the time I was hoping to find a better solution so I decided not to commit to either of those. It’s been two years and honestly I haven’t found anything better. This conversation is making me want to reconsidering paying for one of these. You should be able to test both of them out and see if either is right for you. I assume Bunpo still let’s you try the app, but eventually gives you a pay wall. Bunpro has a 30 day free trial (and it looks like there’s a “lite” version now).

Quick clarification, BunPro do have an app, it’s just that it’s in beta and… has been for a fair while. I think I’ve had it on my phone for nearly two years now and it’s never received an update… it is good for getting notifications for when you’ve got reviews due though. You’re right though in that you’d be extremely unlikely to find it by chance on the app store ^-^

I’ve tried the full version of Bunpo and I liked it as a refresher but I felt like it still didn’t cover enough grammar points. I wouldn’t use it as a primary grammar learning source but it’s useful for extra practice. I really like that the exercises have you completing Japanese sentences rather than trying to equate grammar points to rough English translations.

1 Like

Noticed you’re level 52 with a Grey flair :thinking:. Not judging, just curious, is there something about the few remaining levels that’s not worth paying for?

I use BunPO and I like it. I don’t know if it’s lacking in grammar points, but I like the explanations, the SRS system they have and the difficulty of the exercises. Some sentence arrangements are really hard (Maybe because I’m a noob).
I also like that it uses a good amount of Kanji and Furigana can be toggled on and off.

The lifetime costs only around 30€, I feel it is worth it.

You can try Bunpo for free, but the free version only includes the easiest stuff (Kana and simple words) and a few of the easy N5 grammar points. But I guess it’s good enough for an impression.

Maybe this was changed but I downloaded the app and you are able to try lessons from all difficulties. Just tried an N4 and N3 lesson. I personally like what I just tried more than bunpro. Bunpro one is terribly slow in Germany. Takes me like 5 minutes to load sometimes and two I don’t really find it fun. Bunpo seems to have more of a gameification approach but I am only trying it now. The robotic voice I don’t really like, but otherwise seems decent. I felt the examples they used for より~の方が were good.

1 Like

I bought the Lifetime a long time ago, I guess when I started I didn’t bother to have a look at the higher levels and forget you could check them out too =)

1 Like

To clarify, I did mean the app Bunpo, not Bunpro. I completely forgot about Bunpro actually so was quite surprised when it came up again, may have been tricked by a kitsune… lol. Good information on both though so much appreciated.


How do you see your progress chart? I could never find it.

Which progress chart are you referring to?
The one on wkstats.com?

I guess so? I’ve seen many post a bar chart like level progress chart showing how long they took on each level. You mentioned a grey flair which sounds like the bar color when someone takes a long time on a level. I always thought it was part of Wanikani and couldn’t never find it.

Ah no the flair is the round circle next to your profile picture that has your level on it. Purple is for people who have bought a Lifetime subscription. Blue for regular subscriptions. Gold for people at level 60. Grey for inactive members.

The wkstats.com site has the progress bars you’re looking for :).

Nah, I just use WK very inconsistently :sweat_smile: I used to be level 59 then I reset a bit and university started again so I had to put it all back on pause.

Resetting from level 59 seems criminal.