Guide on How to Say “Software” in Chinese

Welcome to this comprehensive guide on how to say “software” in Chinese. In this guide, we will explore both formal and informal ways to express this term. Additionally, we will cover regional variations, tips, examples, and anything you need to know to effectively communicate this concept in Chinese.

Formal Ways to Say “Software” in Chinese

When it comes to formal settings, such as professional environments or official documents, there are a few terms you can use to convey the concept of “software” in Chinese.

1. 软件 (ruǎnjiàn)

One of the most common and widely used terms for “software” in Chinese is 软件 (ruǎnjiàn). This term encompasses a broad range of software applications, programs, or systems.

Example: 我正在开发一款新的软件。(Wǒ zhèngzài kāifā yí kuǎn xīn de ruǎnjiàn.) – I am developing a new software.

2. 软体 (ruǎntǐ)

In some formal contexts, you might come across the term 软体 (ruǎntǐ) to refer to “software.” However, please note that this term is less commonly used compared to 软件 (ruǎnjiàn).

Example: 这个软体需要更新。(Zhège ruǎntǐ xūyào gēngxīn.) – This software needs an update.

Informal Ways to Say “Software” in Chinese

Informally, especially in daily conversations or casual settings, native Chinese speakers often use more colloquial terms to refer to “software.” Here are a couple of informal options:

1. 软件 (ruǎnjiàn)

Interestingly, 软件 (ruǎnjiàn), the term used formally, is also widely used informally. Due to its dominant usage, it seamlessly fits both formal and informal conversations, making it a versatile choice.

Example: 你有没有下载那个新的软件?(Nǐ yǒu méiyǒu xiàzài nà ge xīn de ruǎnjiàn?) – Have you downloaded that new software?

2. 软体 (ruǎntǐ)

Similar to its formal usage, 软体 (ruǎntǐ) can also be used conversationally, especially among friends or in casual situations.

Example: 这个软体好好玩!(Zhège ruǎntǐ hǎo hǎowán!) – This software is so much fun!

Regional Variations

Chinese is a language with various regional dialects that may influence vocabulary choices. However, when referring to “software,” the terms mentioned above remain widely understood and used across different Chinese-speaking regions. Therefore, you can confidently use the provided terms regardless of regional variations.

Tips for Talking about “Software” in Chinese

To further enhance your understanding and ability to discuss “software” in Chinese, here are some additional tips:

– Pay attention to context

As with any language, the meaning of a term can be influenced by the surrounding context. Ensure you adapt the term for “software” to match the context you are in.

– Use appropriate measure words

Measure words are an essential part of Chinese grammar. When discussing “software,” it is common to use the measure word “款” (kuǎn) along with the term 软件 (ruǎnjiàn). For instance, 一款软件 (yí kuǎn ruǎnjiàn) means “one software application” or “one software program.”

– Stay updated with technological advancements

The field of technology evolves rapidly, introducing new software-related terms and concepts. Keeping up with technological advancements will help you stay current and effectively communicate about “software” in Chinese.


Congratulations! You have acquired a comprehensive understanding of how to say “software” in Chinese. You learned about formal and informal terms, explored regional variations, received valuable tips, and saw examples in various contexts. Remember to adapt your choice of words according to the situation and keep yourself updated with technological advancements. Now you are equipped to confidently discuss “software” in Chinese!

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