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Finding The Perfect Anki Alternative In Chinese Learning

Learning with flashcards has been scientifically proven to be a lot more efficient than traditional study methods. You can either decrease your time spent studying or increase the amount you learn.

If you are a Chinese learner who finds this learning method helpful, you have probably heard about Anki – the famous software that helps users remember things effectively with flashcards. But is Anki the best choice to learn Chinese? This article will give you a detailed look at Anki and the benefits of using this perfect Anki alternative for Chinese language learning. 

What is Anki?

Anki is a software that allows users to integrate memorizing techniques into a functional study platform with flashcards. Anyone who needs to remember things in their daily life can take advantage of Anki. This software supports users in various learning purposes, from learning languages, studying for exams, memorizing speeches, and even practicing music with instrument sheets. The possibilities are endless since Anki is content-agnostic and supports images, audio, videos, and scientific markup. 

The Anki software is open-sourced, which means that it’s free and open to all users (except for a $24.9 fee for the iOS app). Some people philosophically prefer this to contribute to the growth of education. 

Anki offers users the following features:

  • Customized flashcards: Anki cards are displayed like webpages and can be optionally styled with HTML, CSS, and Javascript. 
  • Large communities: There are many big Anki communities (e.g., r/Anki). You can always create, share and download decks among the community. 
  • Fully extensible: Users can select from hundreds of add-ons developed by the community to extend Anki beyond its core functionality. 
  • Optimized storage: Anki can handle decks of 100,000+ cards with no problems.
  • Prescriptive spaced repetition algorithm: Anki allocates a set number of days to each repetition. For example, you must study a card again in 4 days. Many learners who are extreme knowledge hackers prefer this degree of control.

Pandanese – the perfect Anki alternative for learning Chinese

While many users can benefit from Anki, this software does, in fact, have some drawbacks. For example, you need to download and install the software to your computer, laptop, or smartphone. 

The interface can also cause inconveniences to users. One of the biggest criticism of the Anki flashcards is that it’s dull and complex, hard to navigate, delivering a poor user experience. And, fair enough, being free and open-sourced means that it doesn’t have the funding for more sophisticated design, features, and customer service.

If you’re having such problems (or want to avoid them from the get-go), then Pandanese is a smart Anki alternative for you. Pandanese has a cleaner user experience, well-organized flashcards created by certified language experts. Let’s take a look at the similarities and differences between the two flashcard apps: 

Similarities between Anki and Pandanese 

Both Pandanese and Anki deliver a similar study experience: They allow people to break down mountains of information into collections of individual facts, which they can then study in a question-and-answer format. Then, using the spaced repetition algorithm, the two platforms remind learners to review what they learned after a period of time until the information is deeply ingrained in their long-term memory.

See more: SRS – Spaced Repetition Systems: How it Works and Why it is Effective.

That’s the basic, shared premise of the two flashcard apps. Both use proven cognitive learning principles like spaced repetition, active recall, and metacognition to help users remember a lot of information more efficiently.

Pandanese’s exclusive features 

Now, the fundamental differences between Pandanese and Anki are in curriculum creation, curation, trustworthiness, and delivery. Pandanese offers users the following features: 

  • Flexibility: 

Pandanese is a web-based language learning platform, which means you can access the website, log in to your account and learn from anywhere, at any time. That’s why Pandanese is the perfect Anki alternative when you are on the go or having some free time that you’d like to review some flashcards.

  • A beautiful user experience: 

Pandanese has a beautiful and simple user interface with a consistent and optimized user experience. 

anki flashcards
Example of an Anki flashcard. 
anki alternative pandanese flashcards
Example of a Pandanese flashcard. 
  • Easy to curate and organize knowledge: 

Pandanese fundamentally makes it much easier for users to organize their knowledge by dividing flashcards into categories (Radical, Character, Vocabulary) and categories into lessons. Each lesson contains a particular number of Radical, Character, and Vocabulary flashcards so that users can always keep track of what they learned, how many flashcards they will learn next, and so on. 

anki alternative - Pandanese interface
Anki interface vs. Pandanese interface. When learning with Pandanese, you can see exactly how many Radical, Character, or Vocabulary flashcards you will learn in each lesson. 
  • Trusted and certified content

Pandanese works closely with language experts to create certified flashcard lessons comprehensive for a particular learning purpose (business, travel, or school). However, Anki has no certified content, only user-generated content (UGC), which isn’t 100% accurate or trustable. By that, you have no idea what you’re getting when you access another users’ flashcards.

Differentiation between Anki vs. Pandanese

To help you better visualize the differences between the two platforms, we’ve made this handy chart for you: 

Platform– Users must download Anki to learn with flashcards.
– Anki is available on Windows 7/8/10/11, Linux, iOS, Android.
– Pandanese is a web-based Chinese learning platform.
– Users can sign up or log in to learn anytime, from anywhere.
Learning CategoryAnki supports users in remembering things in daily life, including:
– Language: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Hebrew, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish.
– Art, sciences, and trivia: Anatomy, Biology, Chemistry, Geography, History, Law, Math, Music, Pathology, Physics.
Pandanese is all about learning Chinese: Radicals, Characters, and Vocabulary, organized into 60 lessons (while subscription is active).
ContentAnki offers only user-generated content (UGC).Pandanese offers handcrafted curriculums by language experts, designed for particular learning purposes: business, school, and travel.
TrustworthinessUGC isn’t organized based on quality, accuracy, and thoroughness, so you don’t know if you can trust what you find.Pandanese’s language experts work closely to make sure that the lesson content is useful, accurate, and completely reliable.
User ExperienceAnki runs with open source and is not optimized by user experience (UX) designers. Some say it’s hard to use.Pandanese has a beautiful and simple user interface with a consistent UI/UX experience.
Work LoadWhen the UGC falls short of your learning needs, making your own custom flashcards from scratch requires a lot of work.Each lesson contains specific content according to the user’s learning purpose.
In each lesson, users will be given a batch of flashcards. After learning, they will take a quick quiz to remember what they’ve just learned. 
Spaced RepetitionRequires scheduling and discipline, and can be quite prescriptive about when you can study.The neuroscience-based SRS algorithm prompts you to review radicals, characters, and vocabulary at specific times to maximize retention.
CostAnki iOS app costs $24.99 for lifetime use. Otherwise, PC and Android (for some reason) are completely free.Pandanese’s subscription fee starts from $9 per month to $299 for lifetime use.
Differentiation between Anki vs. Pandanese

The bottom line

When it comes to learning Chinese online, it is important to choose the right source and method to learn. In today’s modern world, where technology is now part of our daily life, it is easier than ever to find a perfect Chinese learning method. 

Do you think Pandanese is a perfect Anki alternative? Let us know by sharing a comment!

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