Jalup is hopefully helping you power through all of your Japanese studying. As it grows and becomes more complex, I realized it would be useful to have a full guide on to assist you in navigating the app, revealing some features you may not have noticed, and giving you some bonus tips on how to make the most out of it.
Since the iOS version was released 6 months earlier than the Android version, there is a lengthy game of “catch up” being played. If a feature says “iOS,” it doesn’t mean it is an exclusive feature, it just means that it will be added in the future as I continue development.
There is a lot planned over the coming months and years, so expect frequent updates on this guide. If you have any questions, suggestions, or feature ideas, leave them using the app contact button. Also make sure to keep track of updates here.
- Store (Purchase & Restore)
- Backup & Data Control
- Guidebook, Questions, & Feedback
- Levels, Experience, and User Stats
- (iOS) Goal Setting
- Learn, Review, Listen and (iOS) Speak Tabs
- Add Custom Cards (iOS)
Learn & Review
- The SRS (Spaced Repetition System)
- Card Peeking
- Undo Last Card
- (iOS) Review Monster
- Checkmark Accuracy
- Card Tools
- User Notes
- Card Rank
- Jalup Master & Champion Manga List
- I couldn’t download a deck after purchasing it. What do I do?
- Can I sync my progress between an iPad and iPhone? Or how about between iOS and Android?
- Does a purchase of Jalup Maximum give me free access to currently unreleased content (ex. higher level decks)?
- On the Android version, I see garbled text instead of Japanese on the front of review cards. How do I fix this?
- The app crashes when I import my backup .csv file. How do I fix this?
- I just recently restored my iPhone or bought a new one. I used the iTunes backup of Jalup, but now the sound isn’t working. How do I fix this?
- I exported a backup, and switched to a new device. When I imported my backup to the new device, I only have access to the 100 sample cards from each deck. How do I fix this?
- I just imported my backup to a fresh install (or new device). My experience points don’t match up. How do I fix this?
- Why do certain areas of the iOS app look strange/broken in landscape mode on the iPad?
- Reset your Progress: Maybe you want to start over? Maybe you want to test some stuff out and then revert everything. You can reset your progress on a per deck or total decks basis.
- Interval Timing: adjust how far cards are pushed back into the future when marked as correct. Normal→1x, Short→0.66x, Long→1.33x, Very Long→2.5x.
- Auto-Play: set your card audio to automatic or manual.
- Font: change the style and size of your font
- Reviews Due: Some people like to get their reviews to zero for the day, and not see them slowly start to reappear as they become due. Set your reviews to come in only once per day, or trickle in when due.
- Vacation Mode
This was originally intended for people who wanted to take a Japanese break and not come back to tons of reviews building up while they were gone. The length of your vacation gets adding on to the due dates of all your cards when you get back. The effect: everything becomes frozen in time. Many people use this for more than vacations (even daily). That’s fine. It’s a way to slow down reviews, or give yourself time to catch up on a large pile of growing reviews. For example:
- Put it in vacation mode until you are ready to review
- When ready to review, turn off vacation mode
- Do your reviews
- Turn vacation mode back on
- Repeat until you get to 0 reviews.
- (iOS) Review monster: a friendly pet that “motivates” you in a playful way to keep your review number down. Choose between a cat, alien or a dragon.
- Kanji Kingdom Display: as you progress through Kanji Kingdom, the way you study it will probably change. Here you can change the amount and type of info displayed.
- Dark Mode: Change Learn & Review to a dark background with light text
- Time Warp: make all your cards become due earlier or later
- Button Display: Change the information displayed on your Learn, Flip, Incorrect and Correct Buttons
- Kanji Assist: Link kanji kingdom up with all the other decks. A list of tappable kanji will appear at the bottom of every sentence card
Jalup includes 100 free cards from every single deck for you to try out, and see if you actually like the app. After that you will need to purchase decks, which contain the rest of the cards from each level. Or you can purchase the Maximum package, which not only provides the greatest value, but also gives you the ability to upgrade it for free any time a new deck is released on the app.
Depending on the deck size, it may take some time for the app to download and load all the cards. Give it time to work. If for some reason it freezes after several minutes of waiting, you can always turn the app on and off to do it again. If you still have problems, send me an e-mail.
The amount of time it takes the average user to learn an entire deck:
Kana Conqueror: 1-2 weeks
Kanji Kingdom: 6-9 months
Jalup Beginner: 2-6 months
Jalup Intermediate: 3-7 months
Jalup Advanced: 2-4 months
Jalup Expert: 2-4 months
Jalup Hero: 2-4 months
These are only averages, and your mileage may vary significantly. There is nothing wrong with going significantly faster or slower.
Your deck purchases are tied to your Apple or Google Play account. If you log in with the same account on multiple devices, you are able to use your purchases across them. The restore button allows you to load purchases onto a new device.
If you bought an earlier deck (ex. Jalup Beginner), you can still buy Maximum, to add the remaining decks to your account and get the free upgrade feature. Just purchase the Maximum package normally and the app will do the rest. No discount is applied to Maximum even if you already bought a previous deck. Please keep this in mind when deciding your long term Japanese study plan.
Do all kinds of advanced searches to find your cards and what you’ve learned. When you do a search, the word you search for will be highlighted in red, and will show up as a hit, whether it appears in the sentence or the definition. This makes it easy to see examples of how the word (or part of the word) is used in all your cards. If you tap on a sentence, it will open that card.
By default, searching will go through all the cards you own. You can narrow down your searches by specific deck and/or whether you have already learned those cards.
You can also narrow down searches based on whether you have starred or frozen a card.
From any search, you can mark (or un-mark) a card as frozen or starred:
(iOS) Swipe left on the row that the card is in.
Android: tap on the card to enter it, and use the freeze/star controls from within the card.
*Note: You can’t star and freeze a card at the same time.
You work hard, so you want to make sure you have your months and years of progress securely saved outside the app in case your mobile dies. You have the ability to export and import your progress into a .csv file (which is a basic spreadsheet you can open in Google Sheets or Excel). It takes a second to do, and frequent backups are recommended.
There is no automatic online syncing, so you are responsible for keeping your own backups. However, depending on your mobile device and settings, usually automatic backups of your app data are taken periodically. Even if you forgot to take a manual backup, there is a chance that your device has taken a backup of the data. However, I can’t guarantee or control that, which is why manual backups are encouraged.
With backups, you can:
- Easily move data between devices.
- Restore your progress when you delete or reinstall.
- Reset and test things out, and then return your data to the way it was.
The real power of the backups comes with the ability to edit your data, all at once, in the exact way you want. When you export the .csv, you can open it in Google Sheets to edit it. It will look something like below:
Some useful techniques:
- Push back a group of cards very far into the future (maybe you don’t want to deal with them now). Change their due dates all to 2023 in column C
- Don’t want to physically learn the cards? Mark them all as review in Column L (they are originally classified as learn)
- Freeze or star a large group of cards (even an entire deck), by changing column K to 1 or 2.
- Add 100s or 1000s of User Notes to all your cards instantly
The possibilities of what you can do with your own progress is endless. After you finish editing, export it back to a .csv file, and then import it back to the app. Just make sure the format is the same (ex. don’t add AM or PM to the date column)
Import Overwriting & Processing Time
If you backup and then import the exact number of rows (ex. you have 6532 rows in your .csv and 6532 cards in your database), importing time is fairly quick. If they are not equal, the database has to do a check against every row, which adds a bit of time.
You can import any amount of .csv rows you want into your database, regardless of the size of your database.
Ex 1. You own 6532 cards, and import a .csv with 600 rows = O
Ex 2. You own 600 cards, and import a .csv with 6532 rows = O
Ex 3. You own 6532 cards, and import a .csv with 5 rows = O
The only thing to watch out for is that only the data you import from .csv will be overwritten.
Ex. You own 6532 cards, and have learned 1,000 cards from JB. You import a .csv with 600 rows, which contain 100 JB cards that have not been learned. The result will be 100 JB cards unlearned (the imported part) and 900 learned cards (the original database amount). If you want to rewrite all data in a situation like this, first reset your deck(s), then import your .csv.
This guidebook will be updated with every app update, keeping you aware of the latest and greatest functionality. Use the ? icon to ask questions, report bugs, or suggest new features.
There are 99 levels, and as you level up, your icon starts to train and get stronger. There are 40 icons in total and you get an upgrade every few levels.
The levels on the Jalup app do not follow the levels on this post. It’s too complex (and inaccurate) to measure levels like this through the app, so consider this more of a fun way to keep track of how far you have come. If I was forced to make a comparison, I would say that maybe the app levels go 2-3x as fast as the levels on the blog. Ex. If you are level 20 on the app, you might be level 7-10 according to the original level guide. It’s not exact though.
You currently gain experience through:
- Learning cards
- Reviewing cards
- Listening to cards
How much experience you gain is determined by whether you mark a card as correct or incorrect, your current level, and how the card has been marked in the past. As of right now, your level doesn’t actually do anything (besides keeping track of things for fun), but eventually there may be level-restricted “dungeons.”
When you tap on the level and experience row, you are shown a bunch of a user stats, including:
- Lifetime Totals
- Forecast of your reviews due over the next 7 days
- The cards you learned and reviewed for the day. You can access the card by tapping on it, or (iOS) copy the sentence to your clipboard by tapping and holding for a second.
From the Learn screen, swipe left on a deck to set a goal.
Choose when you want to finish this deck. Depending on how many cards remain, and the total days remaining until your goal due date, it will calculate a daily learn pace for you to meet your goal.
When you have daily cards to learn for the day (in order to meet your goal), the deck will be highlighted in green. If you swipe left on the deck, it will show you how many cards you need to complete for the day. Once you complete them, it will revert the deck back to blue. If you miss a day’s goal, it will recalculate the missed cards back into your total count. Your daily learn goal is figured every day to make sure it meets the pace for the goal you set.
If you fail the goal (the date you set), the deck will turn red. You can set a new goal or a delete a current goal any time.
iOS has the different locations of the home screen split into tabs at the bottom. Android has things more compact requiring a tap on a deck to choose what you want to do.
Learn & Review
- Total learned/Total Remaining
- Reviews due (per deck and combined)
(iOS) Your review monster and status will be displayed if turned on from the settings (the above screenshot has it turned off).
Access the immersion player for specific decks, combined decks, or Jalup Stories & Situations. You can only listen to the cards you’ve already learned.
There are currently 5 speaking missions, with each mission covering around 50 Jalup Beginner cards (in order). You must complete previous missions to move to the next one. The first 2 are samples, and the remaining 3 are included with a Jalup Beginner purchase.
– Add decks from external sources
– Make cards yourself from within the app
Tap on the Learn tab, and then tap on Jalup Custom:
Tap on Create:
You can also add custom sentences to your progress backup sheet (through something like Google Sheets). Then import it into your app (which will create the new cards). After creation, when you export your progress again, your custom cards will be included in the .csv, in addition to your custom card progress, and all your other card progress. Your backup .csv will always have all your progress and custom cards in the same place.
- Backup your current progress
- From the very bottom of your spreadsheet, you are going to add a new deck abbreviation jx in column A. Then you are going to add 11001 in column B. Custom cards are called JX and they start form 11001. They must start from this number and go in order (in the actual app they will display as starting from 1 though like all the other decks).
- After these 2 columns, copy the previous row of data to look like the below screenshot (copying column C to M).
- Once you have created 11001 doing the above, continue increasing this interval to the desired number of cards you want to add.
5. Once you finish that, go to column N.
Column N: add in jxsentence
Column P: add in jxmeaning
Column R: add in jxnote (this must be added even if you don’t intend to use a note for the card)
6. Make sure to copy jxsentence, jxmeaning, jxnote down throughout all the rows you’ve added
7. Add in your custom card
Column O: add in your custom sentence.
Column Q: Add in your custom definition
Column S: Add in your custom note (optional to actually add in the note, but mandatory to use the phrase jxnote in row R)
8. Continue adding all your cards as follows (in this screenshot I didn’t actually add in any notes)
9. Save to .csv and import into your app
This will have the effect of creating new cards to “Jalup Custom” in your deck list that can be learned and reviewed like any other deck.
Brackets [ ] are used for creating cards with furigana. In the first sentence example, 第[だい]一[いち] will add the sentence card with furigana the way you are used to in your normal cards on the Jalup app. You see them when you learn the card, and then you only see them after a flip on review. You don’t need to add furigana if you don’t want to. The Anki furigana plugin creates furigana for cards like this, so if you want to use custom cards that don’t have furigana, first run them through Anki. Eventually I may add an auto furigana plugin directly through the Jalup App.
If you are using other custom decks that have furigana in a separate field, you can just add that to the jxnote column instead.
You can also still use user notes (Column M) in addition to custom card notes.
Things to avoid:
In the sentence field, try not to use the symbols:
| ( ) –
These are used in card linking. Technically, you could link your own cards to other Jalup cards through the system’s card linking process. However, this would be very hard and not practical. Just for reference, a Jalup word looks like this linked:
- In between | is the word and it’s keyword. The left side is what gets displayed, the right side is the keyword to pull up its card
- () are used for furigana
In the meaning and note field, try not to use the symbols:
While English (as opposed to Japanese) commas and quotes are allowed, sometimes they might cause weird behavior.
Adding new custom cards vs. importing custom cards
What you put in the date field affects how the data is imported or created for custom cards.
If you have a date, it will import that date and all the other columns in C to L.
If you use the keyword new instead of a date it will create the card as new (only do this if the card doesn’t exist already on the app), with a brand new date and default initial values for C to L.
Learn: Experience new cards for the first time
Review: What you do with all those learned cards, for the months and years to come.
The in-app tutorial tutorial provides a very in depth explanation about how to learn and review with Jalup, so if you are confused, follow it carefully.
The most important feature, which you will use to death, is known as card linking. This is the ability to tap on parts of a sentence to have it bring up the original card(s) where you learned that Japanese.
When you have tapped one link, tapping the top left button (card number) or close button will return you to the original card. When you are 2+ links in (after having tapped links multiple times), the top left button will bring you back to the previous link, while the close button will close out all links and bring you back to the original card.
Spaced repetition is simple. After you learn something, if you review it over increasingly growing timed intervals, you will retain it longer. That is the heart of the Jalup app.
Generally, your intervals are affected by:
- How long it takes you to learn/review a card (up to a maximum amount of time)
- Whether you press (or long press) the correct (green) or incorrect (red) button
- Whether you looked at card links
- How many times you’ve already marked the card correct/incorrect
A lot of other small things go into it to make sure that cards are set for review at the perfect time.
For more control you can:
- Adjust the default intervals from the User Settings on the home screen.
- Long tap (tapping and holding for a second) on the red button to give a shorter correct interval. Long tap on the green button to give a longer correct interval. (This gives you more precision control over your reviews for those who prefer more choices. This keeps 2 buttons, but allows for 4 choices)
Card peeking is the ability to go back and forth between cards, without actually learning or reviewing them. This is useful if you:
- Made a mistake and tapped learn or review too fast
- Want to see what you’ve learned already in your current study session
- Want a sneak preview of what is to come.
Card peeking can be used on both Learn and Review mode.
For example, assume you are learning card JB2.
If you swipe left or right, you will get to peek at the cards before and after it (you can do this repeatedly).
On card peeks, you can use card links, activate card stats, and star cards. The only thing you can’t do on a peek is freeze a card.
Sometimes we make mistakes while learning and reviewing cards. You pressed learn without actually finishing learning a card, or you marked a review card correct when you meant to mark it as incorrect. By long pressing (tapping and holding for a second) on the card number (ex. JB5 or JA230), it will undo your last card, as though you never did it.
* You can’t undo multiple cards in a row.
The review monster is a friendly way to pressure you into completing your reviews. Keep your review monster happy by getting the count to zero. Or watch as it becomes increasingly agitated.
While in review mode, you can see as your review monster transforms (changing icons and getting highlighted with a yellow box). This is a useful way to see how far your reviews have gone down visually, rather than have a number in your face bogging you down.
*Note: this can all be turned off from the settings.
An easy way to glance at your card accuracy is to note the color of the checkmark in the top right of the screen. If it is green, your accuracy is above 75%. If it is white, below 75%. Cards that have not yet been reviewed have no accuracy, so always appear white. When you tap on the accuracy checkmark, you open up Card Tools.
(iOS) Tapping on the accuracy checkmark opens up Card Tools. This allows you to freeze, star or view the stats of a card.
- Freeze a card: prevent a card from appearing in learn, review, and listen. This will not affect its due date (use Vacation Mode instead for this)
- Star: mark a card so you can return to it later
- Stats: See how well you’ve reviewed a card (its rank)
- Note: Add your own note to a card (html allowed)
Android: Freeze and Star are directly on the top of the Learn or Review screen.
Remind yourself of something important, list little discoveries that you make on subsequent reviews, add outside example sentences, or add memory mnemonics. Editing can be done in or outside app.
By using the backup sheet you can make big changes all at once to your notes.
* Occasionally quotations or commas can cause issues. You are better off not using these symbols, but if you do, make sure to occasionally test to make sure your cards are backed up properly and can be re-imported.
*For those who use both iOS and Android (with imports and exports to sync progress): Android can’t handle notes yet in your backup sheet. Your notes will not be included on an Android import (or a subsequent export from Android).
See your card accuracy, time spent reviewing the card, and how many times you’ve marked the card correct or incorrect. A card has 6 ranks, and every time you review it with the green or red button, it will increase or decrease that card’s rank by 1.
*Android version now has the ability to display this on one of the buttons (through the settings). Just choose the “card stats” option. iOS also has this option as well, and for now, has this original way to display information.
Want to follow along for free with the first chapters of all the manga Jalup Master and Champion use as reference? Click on the links below to get access to the publisher’s free samples.
1. よつばと！ (1-74)
2. 日常 (75-110)
3. ドラゴンボール (111-179)
4. しろくまカフェ (180-199)
5. うさぎドロップ (200-250)
6. 坂本ですが (251-278)
7. Charlotte (279-342)
8. 最強伝説黒沢 (343-467)
9. 幽遊白書 (468-500)
10. 俺物語 (501-662)
11. Orange (663-750)
12. 野ブタをプロデュース (751-844)
13. ハンターハンター (845-953)
14. イタズラなKISS (954-1000)
1. 宇宙兄弟 (1-146)
2. One Piece (147-250)
3. ちはやふる (251-345)
4. 銀魂 (346-500)
6. 僕のヒーローアカデミア (637-750)
7. 鋼の錬金術師 (751-851)
8. デスノート (852-1000)
Ever wanted your own immersion player in your pocket, that could play all the sounds of what you’ve been learning?
Choose a deck (or combined decks), to listen to all the cards that you’ve already learned. Each sentence will be read aloud one at a time, and appears at the top of the screen. They are in order, but if you want to change this, tap the random button at the far right. You can also turn a sentence on 1x, 2x, 3x, 4x, or eternal repeat with the repeat button, or adjust the in-app volume (iOS).
One of the most unique and powerful features of the immersion player is the shadow timer, which at default is set to 0 seconds. This is the amount of time in between tracks, and gives you time to shadow (mimic out loud) a sentence you just heard. You can set it between 1 to 5 seconds depending on your level and how much time you need.
The immersion player is fully available with the lock screen (iOS), or the screen completely off with the phone in your pocket.
It actually even works on Car Play, with the sentences appearing on screen. However, this is a side effect of the title of each track being the actual sentence. Unless you are the passenger, do not look at sentences while driving. This is dangerous. Listening practice is good enough.
You can also access Stories and Situations through the immersion player. Using a scrollable script, you get much longer and in depth Japanese to practice, that uses only the language you’ve learned from the respective Jalup decks.
*Android: From Jalup Beginner or Intermediate, tap on Listen > Stories.
This is a very experimental feature, utilizing the microphone and speech recognition of your mobile device. It engages you in situations where you must say the right thing to further a conversation along. It tests your pronunciation and your ability to figure out what to say. There are plenty of hints along the way and multiple correct ways of saying things. If you get stuck, eventually you are given the answer(s).
Ex. you would be given the following, and after pressing the start button you begin speaking.
I said the phrase Konnichiwa into the mic. The speech recognition picked up the phrase I said, and marked it as correct, allowing me to proceed. If it was incorrect, you can press stop followed by start to clear what you said, and then try again.
Q. I couldn’t download a deck after purchasing it. What do I do?
A. A deck download/install is occasionally interrupted upon purchase, especially if you leave the app while the process is initiated. If your purchase went through but your deck doesn’t show up, please try the following:
1. Restart the app. Then try using the restore button.
2. Restart the app. Try using the purchase button instead of restore. When you tap on Jalup Maximum (or whatever deck you purchased) from the purchase screen (Choose a Deck to Purchase screen). You won’t be charged again (unless a Google Play action screen from the bottom slides up asking you to pay, in which you should contact me).
3. Backup your progress → delete the app → reinstall the app → repeat steps 1) and 2) above → import your progress.
(For Android users, sometimes you may need to go to Android > App settings > Jalup > Clear storage before doing the above)
4. Force restart your phone, then try steps 1), 2), and 3)
If you still have a problem, please contact me and provide me the following information:
- If you purchased Jalup Maximum, did you have any other decks purchased before buying Jalup Maximum?
- Did the deck purchase load screen finish? Or did the app crash/freeze midway through it?
- When you tap on purchase button for the deck you already bought, what message comes up (ex. does the Google Play purchase action sheet slide up?)
- (Android Only) Under restore, does it say “Maximum Package is already loaded?”
- (Android Only) Under purchase, does it say “Maximum Package (Equipped)?
- (iOS Only) From the store, does it show the purchased decks grayed out with the word “Loaded?”
- When you get past card #100 on any individual deck, the app tells you that you have finished all the cards, and you need to go purchase the remaining cards?
- If you export your current progress, how many cards does it show you as having in the .csv sheet?
Q. Can I sync my progress between an iPad and iPhone? Or how about between iOS and Android?
A. Yes you can. However, currently it is a manual process, that involves you exporting your backup to the cloud and then importing it on another device. In addition, in order to sync between iOS and Android, you need to make a request by e-mail providing me with your purchase receipt, and I’ll give you a code to access the same content you own on your other different operating system device.
Q. On the Android version, I see garbled text instead of Japanese on the front of review cards. How do I fix this?
A. Try switching the Android system language to Japanese, then back to English, and see if that helps. Some older Android devices have this issue with displaying Japanese fonts properly if they’ve never had them installed.
Q. The app crashes when I import my backup .csv file. How do I fix this?
A. This is usually due to whatever program you are using to edit and save your spreadsheet changing the number formatting for columns C or E.
Column C should not have any AMs or PMs in each cell. Do a find/replace to remove all of them.
2019-09-07 6:52:52 +0000
2019-09-07 6:52:52 AM +0000
Column E should just have plain decimal numbers. Make sure nothing appears like 2.16E+07
• Another common issue is if you edit your .csv and have empty rows at the bottom after all of your content. Delete the empty rows (note: Google Sheets can have up to 2 empty rows and still be okay).
• Another common issue is on custom cards, where a cell has a return in it.
Example, on your spreadsheet it shows up as
And that thing
Instead of the correct:
This thing. And that thing.
Q. I just recently restored my iPhone or bought a new one. I used the iTunes backup of Jalup, but now the sound isn’t working. How do I fix this?
A. This is caused because Apple doesn’t encourage apps to store larger files in the automatic iTunes backups. So, I intentionally disabled the automatic backups of the downloaded audio files (the ones you get when you purchase any decks). The sample ones are the only ones that would remain. This situation obviously isn’t ideal and eventually will be fixed on a future update.
The solution now is:
1. Export your progress
2. Reinstall the app
3. Restore purchases
4. Import your progress.
Q. I exported a backup, and switched to a new device. When I imported my backup to the new device, I only have access to the 100 sample cards from each deck. How do I fix this?
A. You need to restore your purchases on the new device first. Then after you do that, import the backup.
Q. I just imported my backup to a fresh install (or new device). My experience points don’t match up. How do I fix this?
A. Same as the above question. You need to restore your purchases on the new device first. Then after you do that, import the backup. Otherwise the experience points are only given for the first 100 sample cards of each deck.
Q. Why do certain areas of the iOS app look strange/broken in landscape mode on the iPad?
A. The Jalup app isn’t meant to be used in landscape mode on iOS. I was originally going to disable it, but some users requested to keep it as the core functionality works just fine. But things like Goals, the tutorial, card-marking(star/freeze), etc. will look strange in landscape. Switch to portrait mode to fix this.
Founder of Jalup. iOS Software Engineer. Former attorney, translator, and interpreter. Still watching 月曜から夜ふかし weekly since 2013.