Merriam-Webster App or Dictionary.com App?

Merriam-Webster

I have been trying to find a good dictionary app for my son.  After some search, Merriam-Webster Dictionary and Dictionary.com became the top two choices.  Both are pretty good, but I don’t want to load too many apps on the iPAD, so I picked Merriam-Webster (Free).  Here are the reasons:

Intrusive ads: Both apps have free versions. The main difference between paid version and the free version is running ads in the free version.  Dictionary.com has two ads at the same time: one at the bottom of the screen, one at the right top corner of the screen, taking a big chunk of screen space.  It is quite intrusive, hard to ignore.  For kids, especially kids still in elementary school, this is going to be a big distraction.   Merriam-Webster Free app also has ad.  However it only has one ad on each screen, and it is at the bottom of the screen.

Voice search limits: Both apps have “Voice Search” function.  I think this is a very useful feature for kids.  When kids want to use a word in their homework, but don’t know how to spell the word, they can speak the word facing the app, the app will search the word and bring the word with the explanation to the kids.  Merriam-Webster Free doesn’t have a limit on how many times you can use the function.  Dictionary.com Free version only gives you 5 “voice search”.  If you want more, you have to pay to upgrade.

Size of content: Looking at app size (how much space the app takes on your iPAD), Merriam-Webster’s size is about half of the dictionary.com size.  It may have less word entries or example sentences, but for kids, it should have enough for homework and projects.

Features both free apps have:

* Integrated Thesaurus: Synonyms & Antonyms
* Example Sentences
* Audio Pronunciations
* Word of the Day
* Favorites
* Recent History – lets you keep track of the words you’ve looked up

iGameMom Comments:

Both dictionary apps are good.  Merriam-Webster Free, with less intrusive ads and unlimited voice search,  is better for younger kids, such as those in elementary school, or even middle school.  Dictionary.com Free, carrying more information, but with intrusive ads, is better for upper middle and high school kids.

If you would like to check it out or purchase it, please use the App Store button provided below. The cost is the same to you, but iGameMom gets a small percentage. Thanks for your support! Note: The button works for all countries.
Merriam-Webster: Merriam-Webster Dictionary - Merriam-Webster, Inc.            Dictionary.com: Dictionary.com - Dictionary & Thesaurus - Free - Dictionary.com, LLC

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iGameMom April 24, 2013 at 8:39 pm

Thanks! Glad it is helpful!

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david alston April 16, 2013 at 11:04 am

Your review was very helpful. I think I will do the Merriam Webster app but I am going to keep my hardbound Webster’s on the shelf as well.

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iGameMom April 18, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Thank you. I will keep the hardbound Webster as well.

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Nancy March 22, 2013 at 8:45 am

This was really helpful. My daughter is just getting to the spelling stage. With the help of your post, I won’t have to spend time researching the best app for us. Thanks!

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iGameMom March 26, 2013 at 12:19 am

Glad iGameMom is helpful! There are some more spelling apps. Here is a quick link: http://igamemom.com/?s=spelling. All I did was typed “spelling” in the search box on the middle of the sidebar on the left. There are might be one or two apps shown up are not exactly spelling apps, but most of them are. Hope you find the list helpful!

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iGameMom December 26, 2012 at 9:47 pm

I started using Merriam-Webster online also. The app is more convenient and has some more functions.

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Rosina December 5, 2012 at 10:21 pm

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iGameMom December 6, 2012 at 2:09 pm

You are welcome!

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Becky October 25, 2012 at 5:20 pm

I have links to both dictionaries on my classroom website. As you pointed out, each site has its advantages. I use Dictionary.com more because it aligns more closely with the vocabulary standards, and most of what my students need can be found in each entry: meaning, part of speech, synonyms, word origin and etymology, Greek and Latin roots, and related forms. As for Merriam-Webster, my students love the free Scrabble Zone.

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iGameMom October 26, 2012 at 12:54 am

Thanks for the input! I have not used the websites much. This is very helpful to know.

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Kathy Hatch September 15, 2012 at 8:41 am

You have a great site for parents, teachers, and kids. I can’t believe I didn’t know about it before today…extremely informative and “cuts to the chase.” Thanks so much.

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iGameMom September 20, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Thank you! Hope my work can save other parents some time.

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Mark September 8, 2012 at 8:12 am

I liked your review, and agree wholeheartedly about Merriam-Webster being superior. As a high school teacher, I have one word of caution about Dictionary.com: they have A LOT of errors; typos, misprints and definitions that had me scratching my head. After a number of such ‘Huh?’ moments, I have tried to disaude my students from using it, much as I have Wikipedia.

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iGameMom September 10, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Thank you Mark for your inputs. It is always good to know the good and bad of each app, especially when the inputs are from a high school teacher!

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Yen September 2, 2012 at 12:59 pm

This is a good review! It just confirmed that I made the right choice in downloading the free Merriam-Webster app. I’m very satisfied with it and so far it has been very useful in my tutorials. :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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iGameMom September 5, 2012 at 10:37 pm

You are welcome! and thanks for your feedback on the app too. It helps to understand other’s point of view. :-)

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iGameMom September 2, 2012 at 12:41 am

Thanks for sharing iGameMom info. Hope your daughter will like it here.

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Camhy August 31, 2012 at 12:00 am

Thanks! I teach ESL students and was just given an IPad for school use. I will, of course, be concentrating heavily on teaching vocabulary, so this advice is very timely.

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iGameMom August 31, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Great. There are some other language apps for ESl. I am in the processs writting the reviews. Please come back for more app info.

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Misanthropy August 30, 2012 at 11:44 pm

I have had both apps on my device for a while but had no idea which to use. JUST today I took an interest in them again today and decided to look to see if there was a fair review around. This was VERY helpful! Thank you!

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iGameMom August 31, 2012 at 2:57 pm

What a good timing. Glad the review helped.

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Holly August 30, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Thanks for the heads-up! That will be a perfect app for my daughter as she enters high school. :)

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iGameMom August 31, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Great. Dictionary.com would be a good app for her.

Reply

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