Attention Japanese Skritterers: After 5000 lines of code and countless coffees later, we are excited to announce kana handwriting support is finally available for our Android app. We said we won’t stop making Skritter better until Chinese and Japanese are easier than French, and we mean it!
For those reading who don’t know, Japanese uses three writing systems, hiragana, katakana, and kanji. We’ve written a blog post about the their history and usages if you want to know more.
Chinese users have long been able to use Skritter to practice every word that they study fully, and now for the first time ever, Japanese users can too. Before kana handwriting support was available for the Android app, Japanese users were forced to skip the writing of any kana, and instead only write the kanji. Now with kana enabled, you can write words in their entirety. You can even write out full grammatical sentences if you want to!
This opens up a whole new window for Japanese students. Before, a student on Skritter would have to be already familiar with kana in order to read the pronunciations for words, (romaji is a hindrance for learning, which is why we never supported it). Now it’s finally possible to study and write kana. You can start from scratch without knowing how to read or write a thing. This is a very important improvement for Japanese learners!
The feature is not yet available for iOS, however we are eager to implement this if it proves popular!
If you are brand new to Japanese and haven’t yet learned kana, you can start studying from these lists (it’s recommended to learn hiragana first):
For now, the option is disabled by default, so if you want to give kana handwriting a go, first enable the setting from within the Settings area of the app:
Since the feature is so new, there may be a few kinks still to work out. If you have any comments or suggestions for improvement, it would be greatly appreciated if you could let us know.