When it comes to the best and most comprehensive dictionary app available on the iPhone, I think the Dictionary.com app sits atop the list. The Dictionary.com site has been one of the most popular and best websites for definitions for years, and now the app has continued that legacy. This app is among the most comprehensive on this entire list as it has over 2 million definitions and synonyms at your fingertips. No matter what the word is that you are confused or curious about, there is a great chance that this app will include it. It includes the same trusted and accurate definitions that the website does, so you never feel like you are giving anything up at all by using the app and not the website.
Of course, the main use and purpose of this app is to search the definition of words, and it does that extremely well. You would be hard-pressed to find a word that isn't included in the database of this app. It will provide you with multiple meanings and will even use the word in a sentence to help you decipher its meaning. So while the app is great at its primary function, there is so much more this app can do for you too. While most will use it as a dictionary, this app also holds a lot of value as a thesaurus when it comes to locating synonyms and antonyms, which can help you from the common problem of constantly reusing words in essays or papers. In fact, with the simple switch of a little toggle button on the main page, the app transforms from a dictionary to a thesaurus. While that in itself is pretty impressive, that doesn't even touch the surface of what this app can do in terms of its features.
The app features audio pronunciation, which helps make sure you not only know what the word is, but also how to say it. Dictionary.com also lets you search by voice, translate into over 25 different language, save your favorite words for future reference and even allows you to see the background and origin of a number of different words, in case you are curious as to how they were conceptualized. The app also offers some fairly unique features such as the "Word of the Day" (which can help you expand your vocabulary by learning a new word each and every day) and the Quiz widget which allows you to test your knowledge and vocabulary skills.
Another great thing about this app is that it will work for you offline as well. While you do have to pay a few bucks for that privilege, it is a very good optional feature to include. While most of us are usually in an area where we can use data or wifi to access the internet, this isn't always the case. For example, if your internet dies out during a power outage while you're writing a paper or you are reading while camping and have no access to the internet. By having the dictionary available offline, you will never be left wondering what a word means and will always be able to use this app when you need it most.
The look and feel of the app is also a big win. The design and interface of the app is about as simple as can be, which puts the content and features at the forefront. There are no silly or unnecessary distractions that will take your attention away from the words and phrases you are trying to define. The app is very simple to use and everything is laid out in a clear manner, so no tutorial or anything like that is needed to understand how to maneuver the app. The one gripe I might have with the design of the app is the fairly large banner ads that appear at the bottom of the screen, but for an app like this to be available free of charge, you have to expect ads to appear.
One of the best things about this app is that it is available to use and download completely free of charge. This is a huge plus for this app as a number of the dictionary apps out there make you pay for their content and definitions. That's right, without even paying a cent, you have access to the meanings of millions of words in one single app. However, for those out there that want the full experience of what this app can offer, there are a few upgrades that can be purchased from inside the app that will enhance your experience. While some apps may offer a single, recurring monthly charge for upgrades, this app can work in a different way. While the Dictionary.com app does allow for a premium subscription model, a more interesting option perhaps would be the individual upgrades. There are numerous little features that can be added to your app for only a few dollars. Individual upgrades such as an encyclopedia, idioms and phrases, medical or science dictionaries and more. It is awesome that they make these extras available for those that want them.
While some apps may offer a single, recurring monthly charge for upgrades, this app can work in a different way. While the Dictionary.com app does allow for a premium subscription model, a more interesting option perhaps would be the individual upgrades. There are numerous little features that can be added to your app for only a few dollars. Individual upgrades such as an encyclopedia, idioms and phrases, medical or science dictionaries and more. It is awesome that they make these extras available for those that want them, but don't force unwanted additions on their users. The availability of additional specialized dictionaries is completely cool as it is much less expensive than going out and buying a physical copy of a science or medical dictionary.
All in all, I would have to say that the Dictionary.com app is hard to deny for the top spot. The website has been a staple in the industry for years and years, and the app is even better than the web version, with a few added quirks and features that make it a handy little addition for anyone. If you are in need of a free dictionary with over 2 million trusted definitions and synonyms, as well as a number of other useful features which are also available free of charge, this is the app for you and is worth downloading and trying out for a while.