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Duolingo Cantonese: it's coming

Hey everyone, I'm the guy that makes the Chinese plug-in for Chrome on Duolingo that allows you to switch between simplified and traditional and get add all kinds of useful stuff, check it out!

Mandatory link

Since day one, around 2012, I've been asking if I can make a Cantonese Duolingo course, with no response.

70 million people speak Cantonese, it is by no means a small language. The frustrating thing is, as the text is the same and we can translate it in most instances in a second we could take the existing course as a template, and make some changes; but I don't think Duolingo is interested.

So I've decided to go ahead and make a full extension for people to learn Cantonese.

here is a video of what I've put together mostly today as a prototype


and here are some screenshots

http://www.duolingochinese.com/duolingo-cantonese-1.jpg http://www.duolingochinese.com/duolingo-cantonese-2.png http://www.duolingochinese.com/duolingo-cantonese-3.png

Screenshot Screenshot Screenshot

Anyway if you're with me on this mission please give me a thumbs up, a comment about what you'd like to see and any other thoughts you may have! 濕濕碎啦!

February 1, 2018



I grew up speaking Cantonese at home, but never went to any formal Chinese school, and so never learned to read/write. My vocabulary doesn't extend far past everyday conversation, so I find a hard time with things like communicating about medical matters (I'm an RN), following the news, or keeping up with a sermon at church. I would love love LOVE to refine my Cantonese on duolingo though! I'm using duolingo for Chinese and loving it, but would consume the heck out of a Cantonese course! Even more so if it were in Traditional :) thank you for your hard work!


OMG I've been googling "duolingo cantonese" every vew months ever since I discovered duolingo, hero! <3


Cool the other Chinese languages are fascinating


That’s a pretty awesome idea


Any word on when you might be done? I am super excited for it!


Hello everyone,

I built the Duolingo Chinese extension two years ago.

I built it for myself firstly but found it useful and packaged it and uploaded it.

In those two years Duolingo and Chinese course have changed: a lot. I've not developed it, as I simply don't have enough time, but with the help of other developers it could be bought up to speed.

So I've decided to open source it.

I need help from developers and non-developers (from translators).

Developers: if you follow (and star) The Git Hub.

Developers and non-developers: if you join the Discord chat here: https://discord.gg/FKWCr9C you can make suggestions, assist with translations and so on.

The big goal for me, as well as making the course easier; is Cantonese. I've made three lessons work with Cantonese as a proof of concept but as you know it isn't as simple as changing the text-to-speech language from Mandarin to Cantonese, for example "eat": 食/吃. You could of course say 吃 in Cantonese and be understood but it would sound very strange. There are many examples like this.


This is so exciting! Best of luck!


Looking forward to it! Keep it up!


太好了! I support your idea! I've been studying Mandarin for a while and I love it. I have friends from Hong Kong and would like to be able to speak some Cantonese as well. I've heard those friends speaking Cantonese and it's a beautiful language!! Please carry ahead. If you make a Cantonese course I will definitely do it!! :-) 加油加油!!!


Thanks for the encouragement! I find it to be a far more pleasing sounding language than Beijing Chinese. By the way, a Taiwanese accent option will launch with this extension when it is finished.


Informal Cantonese or formal Cantonese? I hope you will teach the informal one.
我有香港朋友。他們說informal粵語更酷 :D


Informal. We wouldn't be able to do a full formal one anyway!


While this is an awesome idea and I really do want a Cantonese course, I have some concerns. From what I understand, Cantonese is a language in its own right, with differing grammar and word choice. While there is much similarity, I would imagine that doing a one to one conversion from the Mandarin course might not always create properly translated sentences.

Nice touch with the Hong Kong flag btw.


You're 100% correct. Mandarin uses 什么 a lot as a sentence particle. It would be understood in Cantonese but it would highly unusual. Technically Cantonese can be written totally differently to Mandarin, luckily it is flexible to allow for Mandarin word-sentence-order too.

Luckily the Chrome Extension API is incredibly flexible. So I'm hoping to overcome to these somehow. I've already overcome some things like bringing jyutping into the system, so hopefully, we'll be able to do something about these grammatical differences too,


It's great to hear you have some degree of flexibility to tweak the course. It also sounds like you have a good deal of personal familiarity with Cantonese. Accordingly, I'm really looking forward to trying out your extension.

Thanks for your hard work!


I just stumbled upon this recent langfocus video about Mandarin/Cantonese differences and similarities: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s2km_z4-1T8


Ga Yau! Please get this running asap so I can teach my daughter!


Mate, you are a savior! Thanks for all your work, i'd be glad to contribute something if you have a patron page or something, hope we can get Cantonese on Duo lingo soon!!


So far I learn all my Cantonese from a forum called 高登, watching HK films, and adding subtitles to HK youtuber's videos. When I do the Chinese course, even when the characters are spoken in Mandarin, I can't help but to read them in Cantonese in my head, the thing that put me off continuing duolingo Chinese was how rigid it is in accepting answers, and the 兒化isms. I have never found proper courses online for Cantonese, so I really look forward to it! 支持你!

Just taking the current 書面語 and adding Cantonese pronunciations would be helpful enough to me, because I actually struggle reading this more than written Cantonese.


I'd be super happy about the arrival of a Cantonese beta/course.

Words cannot express the gratitude I feel over all the hard work that has gone (& continues to go) into developing all these beautiful course offerings.

RobinCard & all other course contributors,

Merci beaucoup <3


This was the first thing I looked for when I first heard of Duolingo, and I have been waiting for it ever since....

I'd make 1 suggestion though. Please use the Yale Romanization system. It is so much easier and more intuitive for native English speakers to use, and all of the best material out there today for people to learn Cantonese uses the Yale Romanization system. It is so much more engaging and quicker to learn and read than the numbered system.


Hey! I'm very happy that you have attempted to create this course. I hope this is a reality on Duolingo in the near future. Keep us updated! Also I had a question, How do I apply the traditional characters on iOS?


I think you have to add a keyboard


Ahh, yes!!! There are a lot of languages I want Duolingo to add but Cantonese is definitely top of my list. So excited! Thank you for your hard work


When is this coming out! Please, I need this. Us second/third generation Asians (from personal experience) need this desperately as I know of some Asian-Americans/Australians that have lost touch with Cantonese. This would be amazing and I don't want the language to die out.


Don't worry, the language is definitely not dying out anytime soon with over 80 million native speakers. :)


Yeah just in future time when we can't teach our kids Cantonese it made me sad :( But learning it now! :D


This is so exciting! Cantonese is my favorite language in the world. Thank you so much for doing this. I only dreamed that there could be a cantonese course for duolingo. This course will be loved by so many people!


So...when will it be available? This post is already 2 years old


Maybe the project is on hold. Since the main website domain is for sale, it's possible it's been canned or is just being delayed as they move to a new website, or otherwise.


Despite being a Mandarin speaker and there are many people here who don't like your work. I don't think your contribution is a something bad. But the flame war here is somehow expected.

You should know that there are a lot of conflicts about Cantonese language, especially the "standard Cantonese" inside Chinese-speaking area and even among Cantonese-speaking societies. Since the oversea Cantonese-speaking society is comparably larger and relatively uniform, I'm not sure whether you have experienced all the conflicts listed here or not:

  1. People argue about whether Guangzhou dialect or Hong Kong dialect should be regarded as the prestige dialect. If you take one dialect as the standard you may offend some people from the other city. Even you say that you are teaching Guangzhou / Hong Kong dialect, some people may not like it.
  2. The de-facto Cantonese orthography standard is not well accepted by all Cantonese speakers. For example, 嚟 actually represents the vernacular reading of 来, 佢 is actually an alternative form of 渠. You can see that both the literary and vernacular reading in MSM (for example, jué is the literary reading of 觉, jiào is vernacular) are represented with the same character. In a similar way, some people think characters like 嚟 are just nonsense and should not be used for writing.
  3. Cantonese people not from Zhujiang delta often find that there Cantonese is looked down upon by people from Guangzhou, which really upsets them. And they may not support the notion of "standard Cantonese" at all.
  4. People who live in Guangdong province but speak other topolects (like Hakka) just don't like Cantonese-speaking people advertising their language all around and pushing their language to them.
  5. People from Guangdong and other provinces have long bragged about which Chinese topolect is more "authentic" and should be used as the lingua franca of all Chinese-speaking societies, which causes a lot of flame wars.


Hi, Thanks for your reply, it is really appreciated. Let me give my opinion on all of them, and how I came to the decisions.

Before I do I would like to point out that every language has these issues.

Take English. Firstly there is no official English, there are many versions, even multiple versions from the same country (take Cambridge and Oxford English) Even within the England, which is a very small country we have words we use in the north that people in the south have never heard – and then American English and so forth.

1) The language that will be taught will be Hong Kong/Macau accent which is a Guangfu dialect just like Guangzhou just with a different accent and some different terminology or words that are used more in one place than the other (diu in HK vs lan in the mainland. haha). The other issue is it is easier to get a computerised voice that sounds good for Hong Kong, in fact, I don't think there are any for Guangzhou, otherwise, I would just make it an option, like I am doing with Poutoungwa in my first extension. You can select a Beijing or have it overwritten with a Taiwanese accent (this addition is coming soon).

2) The orthography used will be, as it implies vulgar Cantonese, not classical Cantonese, as it is for everyday usage. There will be debates about characters. 麵 vs 麪, but that should be fun and part of a debate where we all learn rather than people getting angry at me.

3) There are also hundreds of English dialects. Put an American and an English person into a room and get them to agree which is THE standard English and you'll have the same problem. That's no reason not to learn English.

4) British people may not be fond of a lot of American English being pushed around as the standard, but again, it isn't a reason not to learn English.

5) Well, that is their prerogative, this isn't a political course, it is just an opportunity to learn a language and philosophically speaking I think an opportunity is better than not.

In any case, it is a very narrow view of things because Cantonese and Guangzhou are very closely related Guangfu Yue dialects. There are many, many more Yue dialects that someone who only speaks a Guangfu dialect like Guangzhou or Cantonese would not understand. Speakers of Cantonese and Guangzhou have more in common than they don't. Again, however, this isn't a political course. It is an opportunity for people to learn another language if they want to.


The similar thing happens to Mandarin (with less contradiction though). If I have the chance I always tell a Chinese learner that you are learning MSM (modern standard Mandarin) instead of Mandarin. Mandarin is a large topolect (actually, the largest and most variant one). And MSM is one of its standardized, partially-designed variant instead of a dialect of some actual place. And Taiwan or mainland accent / words? Whatever. Everybody will understand.

And the whole Mandarin / Cantonese dichotomy is a illusion caused by the demographic composition of oversea Chinese societies. Unfortunately, that's the main reason why so many people are interested in Cantonese while ignoring other topolects which also have many speakers. Geography is also an issue. Cantonese has a de-facto standard due to the dense population around Zhujiang delta. For other dialects, it's hard to find such a center. And learning wouldn't be as useful.


Are you meaning 普通话 when you say Modern Standard Mandarin(MSM)?


Basically, yes. 普通话, 国语, 华语, etc. All counts.

Of course, when you speak of 普通话 people may think of a written standard. But that is not important to me. MSM is the language you can find in publications, television, and what people speak when meeting strangers. It's just an agreement that exists in real life. You can imagine what kind of English you'll speak in these environments. It's more formal, sometimes less vivid than your everyday speech, but not completely literal.


This is great! Do you have any idea of when this will go live? Can't wait :)


Amazing ! I hope we can get to use this soon !




Thank you! Cantonese for Duolingo would be AMAZING! Any idea of the timeline for this course?


I would love to see Cantonese on Duolingo - good luck with your efforts!


i want learn cantonese too..


I would love to learn Cantonese. Most of my friends are from Hong Kong or Macao. I don't understand why Duoliongo does not have Cantonese support.


Any idea WHEN Cantonese will be available on Duolingo?


Thank you for your efforts! I hope we can get a Cantonese Duolingo someday, my partner's parents only speak Cantonese so it would be really helpful for me if I could learn in this format.


Two thumbs way up! It would be great to have the option of simplified or traditional characters (preferred) and notes on differences (grammatical, idiomatic) between Cantonese and spoken Mandarin. Please hurry, so I can start impressing my aged Chinese mother with my newfound prowess1 ;-)


I live in San Francisco, where over 70% of Chinese speakers speak Cantonese - I would love to be able to learn the Chinese spoken in my neighbourhood, so I really appreciate that you are working on this project. It's too bad that Duolingo are giving you the support you craved 2 years ago... and it's inspiring that you are working to make language learning possible in new ways. Sometimes you have to create a path when none lies before - thanks for being that pathmaker!


This is blowing me away. You are a hard worker indeed. I enjoy seeing your responses to the constructive criticism in the comments as well.

If you have an easy way to set it up, I would like to volunteer in helping with alpha and/or beta testing as you create this plugin.

Also, as a suggestion to keep you motivated, you should consider setting up a Patreon account. https://www.patreon.com/ For those who believe in your work, want the product, and have some spare change, they can contribute. You might find that on the days you feel demotivated, a little profit will help keep you on track.

I look forward to your progress.


Hope the progress is steady. I am very excited to see this finished.



When is the Jyutping going to be made? I love it so far, thank you!


¡que maravilloso!


Would love to see it


bro i would love to learn Cantonese even though i have Cantonese myself i want to learn how to read and write it because Mandarin is different from Cantonese so it's hard for me to learn Mandarin and trying to read it in Cantonese


i would be totally on board with this mission and would help to develop a duolingo course for cantonese if i had the chance


Thank you! This would be so helpful.


This would be awesome. I hope it comes together soon! Much better than slogging away at Mando which I’m not even gonna use much anytime soon :s


Yes please add this course. I was fluent in Cantonese from living in Hong Kong, and now that I'm back to the states, I'm losing it a lot! This would benefit me so much!! I would do a BETA version if that's out there!


Yes yes yes! Let us know how we may support and see the Cantonee course to its launch! Clearly there’s a ton of a demand for it.


You, my dear sir, are a hero!

I hope you manage this. I started learning Cantonese as a teenager but shifted to Mandarin because of its universal usability. Would be great to be able to take it up again.


Wow that is so good of you to introduce Duolingo Cantonese. I was born in Hong King and speak a bit of Cantonese. I am not Chinese but I wish to brush up my Cantonese.


I hope you have success with this as I have been wanting a Cantonese course for years. My mother-in-law speaks very little English, so I have been working on it on and off for years. However, I find the standard learning approach of book/cd more difficult to keep up on with the regularity that's needed to really improve a language. Good luck and I really hope I can add Cantonese to my course list one day!


My family comes from an area of china that speaks Cantonese, and I want to learn it for my dad. It'd be great if this course was made!


I LAUGH LEFT (siu3 zo2) when I see this comment lol


Cantonese would be a great addition.


Is there any way we can shout louder for this with your wallet? Is there a way to pledge money to this?


I'd love to learn Cantonese on Duolingo! My partner is from HK and his mum doesn't speak Mandarin and a bit of English but I'd love to talk to all his family in Cantonese!


Hey. I havent seen any update to this in a while and its 2020.

is the project/plugin forgotten?


I ask the same question, I have high hopes for the project


Is a Cantonese course still on the cards? I would give an arm and a leg to learn Cantonese on Duolingo, and have been looking out for this course every now and then. Surprised that it's still not on here yet. My family is Cantonese, and I speak a little, but have always craved a more formal education on this language. I'm really hoping this course makes it to Duolingo, would be a joy!


I'm in the same boat and would love Cantonese Duolingo! We've been waiting for many years! Please make it!


I hope to see this come, I'm very interested to learn Cantonese because of Hong Kong's history


So excited About the possibility of Cantonese. I hope it’s available very soon! I’m using Duolingo to brush up on my Japanese, and get a head start on Spanish before my daughter begins in the fall... would be great to have easy access to Cantonese as well, and I know my students in HK would appreciate it too!


yes!!! cantonese!!! and TRADITIONAL chinese please!!!!!


Actually the syntax of Cantonese is quite difference from Standard Mandarin (Putonghua), especially when it comes to colloquial language. The sad thing about Cantonese is that it never has a uniform & standardised writing system that everybody agrees (just look at how young hk people use characters that share the same pronunciation, vernacular Cantonese characters '俗字' and latin alphabet (e.g. 一d for yat1 di1 'a bit') interchangeably. It's definitely okay for speakers who understand it anyways but makes it much harder for learners or for anyone who want to create a course on that. When it comes to a more formal style e.g. news article or legal document, then, people mostly just use Mandarin grammar but Cantonese pronunciation, but no one speaks that way in real life!


I would compare the Cantonese-Mandarin situation to if you were to take English and fit it to Japanese's syntax (What a monster that would create). Native or very advanced English speakers may understand the rough message you're trying to make but to anyone trying to find a way to approach the language, it's incredibly hard to learn. Sorry if I misunderstood part of your message or made an example that was too extreme, I kinda didn't sleep today.


Oof That would be a mess. ハーッ,広東語を勉強したいのに


yes please, I live in Macau and I am learning Cantonese, Duolingo would be superhelpful


As a Cantonese native speakers, I should provide some difference of Standard Cantonese from Standard Mandarin for potential learners. Cantonese adverb is placed after the verb while Mandarin place adverb before the verb. Cantonese have phonemic contrast with both pitch accent and tone contours while Mandarin phonemic tones differ only in their tone contours. Cantonese vowels have length contrast which is suspected to originate from Old Chinese by some linguists but this is controversial. Cantonese medial glides lost its phonemic status and are merged either with the syllabic vowels or the initial consonants. Cantonese have more distinct syllables than Mandarin so Cantonese have more mono-morphemic (one character) words in contrast with Mandarin which have more di-morphemic words. Cantonese have more final consonants which include the -p, -t, -k endings which is not easy to perceived from the lack of audible release.


"-p, -t, -k endings which is not easy to perceive from the lack of audible release."

These glottal stops are not exclusive to Cantonese, we have them in southern dialects of British English. Think how someone from London would drop the -t in got to make it sound like go' and other example is the word "it"; the word is pronounced with no -t. Burmese also has them.


Many English dialects replace t's with glottal stops at the end of words. It's not unique to southern British English. I think what's challenging is the fact that the consonants are unreleased but their presence is still phonemic.


I have to admit that I'm not very familiar with Cantonese. But according to my experience, I don't think "Cantonese adverb is placed after the verb" is true. Are there examples?


I should elaborate: not all adverbs is placed before the verbs. Some adverbs that precede the verbs in Mandarin will follow the verbs in Cantonese. Those adverbs may also have an entirely different pronunciation which suggest different etymology. Three examples are the words for first (/xian1/ in Mandarin and /xin1/ in Cantonese), also (/ye3/ in Mandarin and /mai4/ in Cantonese), all (/dou1/ in Mandarin and /saai2/ in Cantonese). I do not know the exact pinyin for the three Cantonese words but I should had approximant it enough.


What does "濕濕碎啦" mean? Google Translate says it means "wet broken friends". 唔該晒 !


Sup sup shuii la! It's Cantonese slang for "easy" or "piece of cake.

edit: never trust Google Translate!


Definitely never trust google translate on that lmao


It means "no big deal".

I think it's not a bad idea to develop such an extension, but calling it Duolingo Cantonese may cause some problems, after all it's not an authorized course.


I live in HK, and I am a native speaker of Cantonese, English, and Putonghua/Mandarin. Firstly, I can definitely say that Cantonese is extremely difficult, more difficult than Mandarin/Putonghua, which most websites already say is the most difficult language there is. Cantonese has 9 different tones. e.g. for the original sound jan, there is jan1(因), jan2(忍), jan3(印), jan4(人), jan5(引), jan6(刃), jan7(壹), jan8(no such word), jan9(日). Moreover, Cantonese is kind of like a very ever-changing language, with numerous slang words created all the time. e.g. (食鷄) from PUBG, (爛gek1)(There isn't a word for gek1) which means that doing something stupid to attract someone, (夠僵) which means kind of like trying to challenge someone whether the person is brave or bold enough to do something. Lastly, Cantonese is also quite unpredictable to a new learner, as there are many exceptions in which words might be spoken with a higher or lower pitch. Yet however difficult Cantonese might be, it is definitely a very interesting language. Did you know Cantonese dates back to more than 2000 years ago? Cantonese is way, way older than Mandarin/Putonghua! Also, Cantonese is a very interesting language once you master it. Therefore, I greatly recommend learning the language.

PS. If there is a beta version, I would greatly love to volunteer to try it.


There are nine? I only knew six. High flat (1), high rising (2), middle flat (3), low falling (4), low rising (5), and low flat (6). How are the other three pronounced, and are they relevant in standard Cantonese?


Yesssssss! I love your comment so much as I am also a speaker of Cantonese, English and Mandarin (was born in China but immigrated to Canada when I was very young, also have an awkward Cantonese accent when I speak Mandarin but I can get rid of it when I concentrate). There is also a lot of slang in Cantonese that Mandarin doesn’t have that are interesting and unique.

PS. I would also volunteer for the beta version too if there is ever one.




Is it feasible to have characters translated to traditional Cantonese and then turn the sound off? Can listening and speaking be disabled in DuoLingo?


You have my full support on this. Cantonese is one of my native languages. I am sure there will be volunteers who will gladly support you on this. And i will be happy to provide feedback as well.


guys... please... can someone in the higher ups just let this guy be a part of the duolingo system? He's crafting an entire course completely alone, is there no one who can just let him drop his code into "hatching"?????? i'm sure there are many others who would love to help him develop this course, and i'm very interested in cantonese as well, not to mention it would clear up things for users who want the traditional writing as well who just want to have it on duo


Is he actually looking for help other than thumbs up? I would be happy to help. I am a cantonese speaker and would be happy to help!


Thanks for working on this. This would be fantastic. There are so few resources for learning Cantonese, and learning with Duolingo is particularly fun/easy.


By the way, here's my small contribution to the Cantonese-learning, Chrome-using community ;)

Cantonese Romanizer


I grew up speaking mandarine and would love to learn other dialects of chinese.


Important for anybody that loves Hong Kong, should be an asset for duolingo


I am in if u need any help really want to put an effort in keeping this language


Looking forward to learning Cantonese.


HI! Great idea! I work in Guangdong province now, and would love to learn CANTONESE !


Yes! I would love to learn Cantonese. I'm currently starting to learn Mandarin, but I would like to learn Cantonese, too, as I've heard that they both have the same symbols. Nice video, too!


I speak fluent Cantonese and have been dying to learn to read as well. Am doing the potunghua course in the meantime while I wait for what I really want.


Looking forward to Cantonese. Please add it soon. Personally I think it’s best to use spoken language as a guide and use the unique non-standard Cantonese characters, which are nevertheless widely used in HK and the Chinese diaspora. It’s easier to learn the formal (standard written Chinese) characters later on top of the Cantonese ones, rather than the other way round. Several commercial Cantonese language teaching offerings e.g cantoneseclass101 use the same approach, which works very well. This approach has the benefit that it maintains the most consistent relationship between how to say things in daily life and how things are written, and is therefore less confusing for the new learner. After all people want to learn a language to communicate by speaking in the first place. Leaning words (standard / formal) characters which nobody uses when speaking detracts from that goal. Distinguishing formal written language from spoken language is an intermediate/advanced level skill anyway.


I hope this will happen soon


I need this on Duolingo. I would be very interested!


And traditional Chinese please


Cantonese Chinese (At least the HK variant) uses traditional chinese (If you meant you wanted the course in Traditional Chinese Hanzi). If you view the video, it seems that (s)he's already implemented Traditional Chinese as the main character type. Sorry if this message is hard to read I just like to include everything. TL;DR Cantonese already uses Traditional.


Hi RobinCard, that looks great, when could we have access to Cantonese ? even as a Beta


Pleaseeeeee make cantonese works on duolingo <3


Is there anyway to download your extension?


I would love to learn Cantonese.


Would LOVE for Cantonese to be added!


I wonder why even after all these years Duolingo hasn't integrated a Cantonese course. I mean, I see the incubator and there is Yucatec on the making, and that one has way less native speakers than Cantonese. There are also 2 fictional languages in the platform, both from tv shows... Maybe they require more than 1 contributor to create a full course? Have you searched for more contributors? I unfortunately cannot be a contributor since I don't speak the language... But I would love to learn Cantonese. Anyway, thank you for your hard work on this plug in!


I've joined the incubator months ago (I'm a native Cantonese speaker) and nothing seems to happen. I started to think Duolingo just won't start this language, after all one of their office is in Beijing and under the current politic circumstances, they might be under certain pressure. However saying that, Cantonese really is an interesting language, and I certainly hope that it will not fade away in the future.


its so sad. totally agree with you. i think they care about the mainland china market so much so they give up cantonese course.


i am native speaker living in hk and i can make sure that the ccp is making affort to wipeout the cantonese language,and i think they'll do the same on which how the irish and welsh language had suffered in the past later after the padamic,however let's hope it wont fade in the future (because a lot of people living in hong kong and macaw are either of chinese origin,which means they cant speak the language,or start to use putonghua in daily lives,the government also support the development of putonghua and not for the cantonese language...)


Sadly, I have to agree. I think Cantonese, Shanghainese or any other Sinitic language common inside the borders of China are political non-starters for Duolingo. Like someone mentioned above, they have business interests on the mainland and, potentially, they have employees who rely on them to keep them safe from the political repercussions of teaching non-standard forms of Sinitic. Anything that the CCP might perceive as promoting a non-standard Chinese could very quickly get Duolingo blocked inside China and their employees or contractors in deep legal trouble.

As much as I'd love a Cantonese course, we're never getting one on Duolingo, not as long as people inside China can still access the app.

Ironically, one of the best ways for Duolingo to help preserve Cantonese might be for Duolingo to get blocked by the CCP for some other trivial reason. It would free the company from having to care about the political ramifications of expanding their Chinese language selection.


Please make this language available. There is a huge Cantonese population and it's spoken all around the world. Please also have it in traditional Chinese as it is the form that it is usually written in.


I want to learn Cantonese, it's a major dialect in my place, together with hokkien, hakka, teochew and hainan dialects.


I just went through the video.

I think you are correct when you said you can't just translate it because its not just covering simplified to traditional.

For example, one of your sentence was 你吃飯

But Cantonese people would never say that. They understand it but we'd use the word 食 instead of 吃。 Minor things like that.

If content translation is a problem, maybe you can crowdsource this? I'm sure many people in Hong Kong would love to help!


I agree. Unfortunately I'm not the one who made the app so, I think we may need to ask the creator. But, it's a good idea!


Does anybody know of any conversation groups that meet online to practice speaking Cantonese at the upper-beginner level and higher?


I don't know. I'd like to do that though. I have basic Cantonese skills, as I knew it as a child but lost some. I have a friend who speaks canto but I'm too shy to speak with her because I'm so bad =P


I have been waiting for this project for so long... Amazing work! The domain www.duolingochinese.com is available on Godaddy, is it still running? Thanks


Currently, it links to a domain selling website so I think they may have shut it down/are moving to a new domain. Hopefully they're planning to continue their projects


And traditional Chinese please


You can use Duolingo Chinese together with Han Ping Cantonese Dictionary App on Android for Cantonese, Traditional Chinese characters.

For iOS, iPhone/Android turn-on the Cantonese WHK dictionary on Pleco App. You can configure both Pin Yin and Traditional characters on Pleco too.


great, more languages


I'd love to check out the beta, if it has a main skill select like other Duolingo courses do (Since I'm assuming this is supposed to be an extension/plug-in), then please include learning tips, as I like to read on the grammar of a certain skill before I do the skill. Thanks and good luck


That would be amazing if you could convince duolingo to make a cantonese course. My girlfriend speaks cantonese so I'm trying to learn the language. Please add this duolingo!


All the best in making this cantonese course happen. I have always wondered why it's never offered on any language learning platform.


learn from "droplets" its a great app~ there are other cantonese learning apps. also they offers traditional chinese


My husband uses drop (I think it's the same app) it's good for expending his vocabulary but it doesn't teach him much sentences :( really hope that Duolingo could do Cantonese!


Drops is bad for Cantonese in my experience. The pronunciations are weird and they use classical Chinese words for spoken Cantonese.


do you have other apps could recommend to me please? my partner would like to learn also I hope cantonese wont fade away due to political reasons


OMG thank you so much! I grew up speaking Cantonese and I had to go to Chinese School to learn Mandarin (Traditional).


Hi There! It’s been a while and I was wondering if Cantonese Duolingo will ever happen? I’ve never seen it in the incubator and I was really excited to learn Cantonese on Duolingo.


Anyone else not able to unfollow this discussion? I clicked on "Unfollow" several times, and I get a confirmation, but the notification mails keep coming.


I'll contribute if you want! I speak and write Cantonese and english


This initial intention was posted 2 years ago! Any progress? In the meantime you can use Duolingo Chinese together with Han Ping Cantonese Dictionary App on Android for Cantonese. For iOS, iPhone/Android turn-on the Cantonese WHK dictionary on Pleco App.


This initial post is 2 years ago! Any progress?


Please make a Cantonese duolingo!


Heyy. Any update on this so far?


Hey, how's the project going? Anybody know?


This sounds like an awesome idea! I'm from Canada and am/was learning Cantonese at a young age.


Any updates on adding Cantonese to Duolingo? I would love, love, love for it to be offered! Thank you!


I've always wanted to learn Cantonese more than Mandarin. Duolingo higher ups, please add Cantonese!

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