What is Pinyin and do you know its importance?

Pinyin is the foundation of Chinese learning. We know that pinyin is the official Romanization system for standard Chinese language learning in Mainland China. The Chinese language has 409 different sounds, and we can divide all these sounds into syllables. Each syllable has one of 4 different tones or the neutral, unstressed tone.

When you start studying Chinese pinyin is the first thing you’ll be taught in the classroom. If you’re studying Chinese by yourself, however, it can be quite intimidating. But with the help of apps, websites, and other web resources, learning pinyin is easier than ever.

In the first week of our Chinese Starter Kit course, we’ve rounded up 5 of the top websites and apps that we think will be helpful in laying down your Pinyin foundation for learning Chinese.

These resources are really efficient and can help you make a lot of progress during the course, week by week. Don’t forget, practice makes perfect.

Yabla Pinyin Section

Chinese apps

Yabla is an online computer-assisted language learning website. Yabla currently supports learning in Spanish, French, Mandarin Chinese, Italian, German, and English. The Chinese section shows all the “pinyin” varieties. It’s well explained and has every letter and pronunciation in the pinyin table. It’s a great resource for someone who is just starting out and wants a nice visual aid to help learn pinyin.


Sinosplice uses a lot of analogies comparing English to Chinese, so if English is your mother tongue or you are an English speaker, this is a good option. Every sound of pinyin is well explained with reference to English, comparing each example with an English word that contains the same sound.

This is a truly valuable resource that involves you step by step in the world of pinyin with analogies between English and Chinese words.

Chinese apps

YOYO Chinese

YOYO Chinese might be one of the most user-friendly apps/websites on the market. It’s definitely a good choice for those who want to start learning Chinese from the beginning. All the classes are based on videos and after that, there are little quizzes about the previous lesson. Every lesson is well-explained and dynamic with plenty of exercises. For this week, one of the best features is the multimedia Pinyin Chart, which features audio and even video demonstrations for each sound.

You can use this app for FREE, or you also you add new features depending on your needs which range from $29 up to $149.

Chinese apps

AllSet Learning

If you’re looking for a portable app because you’re always on the go, we have a great solution for you! AllSet Learning is an APP available for IOS which in essence is a pinyin dictionary. It’s the only pinyin chart for iPad and iPhone to make full use of zooming and panning controls to make studying pinyin easy and enjoyable.

Chinese apps

Chinese Pinyin Trainer

Pinyin Trainer is an APP that’s available for iOS and Android. It may look like another pinyin dictionary but it’s a lot more. Pinyin Trainer will help you master those tones using Pinyin. It focuses on learning and practicing at the same time with dynamic lessons that makes it feel less like teaching APP and more like a game.

Chinese apps

With the basics of pinyin covered, you’ve already taken a key first step on your way to mastering Chinese! The first week might be the most difficult, but you’ll gradually start seeing your progress.

Stay tuned for the next week lesson on tones. If you’re interested in looking at a few more Chinese language resources that we recommend, check out our article “ 5 Free Tools To Learn Chinese” or “5 Common Mistakes When Learning Chinese.”

If you’re more interested in China, get in touch with our consultants and ask about our programs, and start your adventure. Apply now!

See you next week, 再见! zài jiàn!