[ Who Buys Korean Electronic Dictionaries ]

the coolest thing to toddle around to-date in South Korea is the iPhone
and although NO time schedule has been set for import of the iPad in 2010
Electronic Dictionaries WILL continue to sell long time even after the iPad has set in .

there are 3 reasons to this in Korea around da Millennium :

    the extra-studies program plaguing Korean Education System
    for narrow selection of entry into prestigious High School AND Colleges
    left over from the conquest days of neighboring Japan
    still continues as massive populace in a small landmass struggle for a grab of the /good life/.yes other alternatives may be researched AND enacted
    but there are so many teachers AND reference guide printers
    that will loose their jobs, or so goes the concensus among the land .

    these exams cover a wide array of subjects
    and in the Global age none can be more crucial than major foreign languages .

    in a land where most people share common jobs and hobbies
    competition is high in business
    and to succeed in the Global Age companies judge employees’ foreign language skills
    come time for job promotions .
    Koreans are enjoying journeys to the far corners of the World
    for BOTH work AND pleasure
    and need such electronic companion to aid their way .



[ Korean Electronic Dictionary Manufacturers ]

trying to choose an electronic dictionary among the myriad of makers AND models is a daunting task
considering the mix-and-match combination of languages AND specifications available
BUT is substantially easier if you remember the characteristics of each company that makes them .

if you look at the roster of available models at a certain time in South Korea
you will realize some companies come AND go
while some always roar at the top selling list .

therefore I will pass on some models this year
they have not made MY list of valuable products worth their price tag such as :

  • http://www.atree.com which produces might fun machines however a notch below efficient range,
  • http://www.ectaco.co.kr which should rightfully be called (the more expensive) electronic translators than dictionaries,
  • http://www.casio.co.kr which is another Japanese giant but still uses the clumsy tiny LCD writing box for input //


Japanese giant company of small electronics Sharp has ruled this arena
before sub-notebooks roamed the Earth noteably with their Zaurus Line of electronic schedulers OR schedule books .
and Sharp Korea, a Korea-Japan joint venture formed in 1999
continue this ancestry with their Korean counterparts
although a tad out-dated in ease AND glitz smaller AND newer Korean companies now dare to offer .

HanNuriBiz is one loyal Korean company which have been researching AND producing electronic dictionaries since 1996,
and is now considered the top choice especially on Chinese input AND translations .

iRiver has been selling portable electronics since 1999
and has been a sensational hit of artistically designed mp3 players since the early part of the Millennium .
thus they offer more glitz AND pizazz of sound AND video than sheer back-bone dictionaries .

all in all it would be a safe bet that Japanese OR joint-venture brands are techinically (including input ease AND sensitivity) advanced
while pure Korean OR Chinese OEM brands have much more modern capabilities including video AND are fun to use .



[ Deciding Factors in Buying a Korean Electronic Dictionary ]

even in May, 2010 and iPad CANNOT be an iPhone,
and thus there is NOT perfect electronic dictionary so you choose which
tickles your fancy AND supports school OR work-load you are seeking .

  • outer-design, size AND weight,
  • which language it supports AND which brand dictionaries it consists in THAT language,
  • types of input mode including keypad AND text-recognition software,
  • pronounciation playback capability AND the realness to actual voice . usually this will NOT support all languages in the dictionary .
  • option of translation capability although will be limited to a few languages only !
  • further options such as scheduler, mp3 player AND video player . I should add the FREE download of video lessons bundled in some models act as big reasons to buy for practicing students .


considering some having numb mode of input, you really have to try a few of them before buying . and the best place to do this is any of the portable stores in YongSan Electronics Market District OR any technical stores buildings I have mentioned on my specific Page .
if you are in other cities, the nearest SuperMart OR Electronics-Land called “JeonJa-Land” and even SamSung AND LG Electronics showrooms would have ample models of other manufacturers available .

if you are only trying to learn Korean in the beginning stage however, models AND manufacturers made AND sold from your home country would better serve your needs, although you should be aware of where to get product support if you have problems while travelling into another country .



[ and here are my Choices for Spring 2010 ]

Spring is when scholastic semester begins and graduates hired for work so a decisive time for sellers as well as buyers .
I have picked 3 to match your deversified needs AND price .
ofcourse I cannot get into ALL the specifications of each which would need another full electronics dictionary, so have abbreviated capabilities such as maker, model number, (contained memory,) main ability, screen size in pixels, pronounciation mode, types of playable video codec, audio AND recording capability, compatible memory card slots, battery types, available languages, dictionaries, phrases for travel, size, weight, release date AND the lowest discount price beginning of June 2010 .

all models here include basic text viewer in .txt format AND with a formidable scheduler .
hard to predict battery power on devices with such varied ability but most will last roughly 6 hours video, 12 hours dictionary and 24 hours mp3 play :

Sharp RD-PM2000 Edu1 Sharp RD-PM2000 Edu2 Sharp RD-PM2000 Edu4
Sharp-Korea’s RD-PM2000 Edu (8GB) 4.3″ color 480 x 272, full touch recognition/ video lessons/ native, TTS pronounciation/ DiVX video/ Flash/ mp3/ FM reception/ voice recording/ MicroSD (SDHC) slot/ charge via cell phone plug/ detachable battery/ Essence and Oxford English/ Essence and New Ace Japanese/ KoRyo University Chinese/ 11 language phrase/14 x 8 x 2.3cm 320g – May 2010 W330,000

phrases included : English, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thai, French, German, italian and Spanish ..
audio : mp3 wma wav ogg flac ape asf pcm ac3
video codecs : mpeg4 wmv7/8/9 DiVX XViD and smi captions
text viewer : txt only

this would be your choice if you want (almost) everything jammed in the pack, with price to match .


Nurian X41 front Nurian X41 pro
HanNuriBiz’s Nurian X41 (8GB) aka ‘Kris’ Chinese-specialized/ 4.3″ color 480 x 272, full touch recognition/ native, TTS pronounciation/ translation/ video/ mp3/ FM reception/ voice recording/ non-detachable battery/ Essence and Collins English, Essence and New Ace Japanese, KoRyo University Chinese, 13 language dictionary/ 13 language phrases/ Chinese video lessons/ 15.5 x 9 x 2.1cm 260g – March 2010, W250,000

dictionary AND phrases included : Korean, English, Chinese, Japanese, French, German, Spanish, italian, Portugese, Thai, Russian, Vietnam, Indonesia ..
sentence translations in English to Chinese and vice versa (NO Korean),
text viewer : txt only
image view : jpg bmp gif png at maximum 800 x 600 pixels

this would be your choice if you need Chinese in all flavours 😉


iRiver Dicple D1000 WiFi
iRiver’s Dicple D1000 WiFi (8GB) 4.3″ color 480 x 272 touch screen/ video lessons/ native, TTS pronounciation/ Internet via wireless/ video/ mp3/ FM reception/ voice recording/ MicroSD (SDHC) slot/ recharge via cell phone plug/ non-detachable battery/ YBM All in All and Collins English, Essence Japanese, KoRyo University Chinese, Prime French and German, MinJeung Spanish/ 24 multi-language dictionary/ Brittanica/ 14.2 x 8.1 x 1.8cm 237.8g – March 2010 W370,000

Korean, African, Bulgary, Chinese including Cantonese, Czech, Denmark, Netherlands, French, German, Hungary, italian, Japanese, Polish, Portugese, Russian, Serbian, Turkish, Ukrain, Vietnamese ..
audio : mp3 wma wav asf ogg flac ape and supports SRS WOW HD/SRS CS headphones
video codecs : mpeg4 XViD wmv9 h.264 in maximum 1280 x 720 pixels, mpeg1/2 in max.720 x 480 and wmv7/8/9 h.263 in 480 x 272 with smi caption support
eBooks : txt pdf dos xls ppt hwp html htm mhtlm
image viewer : jpg raw gif bmp png

OK you need multi-language PLUS internet connection where-ever you go ! (as long as there is a FREE WiFi spot)
cheaper model WITHOUT WiFi is available, also a higher model with DMB TV on top of WiFi !


most of products here were introduced on the beginning of Asian Semester in March,
however we need at least a month usage on mobile devices with such varied abilities .

lastly a few notes from lengthy experience of an avid traveller with international correspondence :
– again, actual pronounciation is usually limited to only a few major languages the machine support,
– whole sentence translations may be better between English and the 2nd language, rather than perhaps Korean and the 2nd language
because originating software may be developed abroad than in Korea .
– make sure you try the keypads as well as text recognition yourself, because all vary considerably between makers AND models .

and here’s to these wonder of little machines that make the World a much smaller place !



– Korea Tech BLog, May 2010 –

( February 29th 2012 Update )

it may seem to the by-stander that electronic dictionaries would diminish in the way of dinosaurs as the World turns smart-phones and what-ever pads or tabs
but although phrase books for travel have been included in the many apps in Apple iPhone as well as Android-based smart-phones and tablets

a large portion of electronic dictionary buyers are graduating students working hard for college exams and early business people yearning linguistics for promotion
so still hanging in there although sale may have lessened

but both battalions of Korean electronic dictionary makers iRiver and Nurian have rolled out tablets from January 2012 so the verdict is still out ..