Review: Ginger Software

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After my Grammarly review, another proofreading software company offered me a premium trial to do a review. This one I’d never heard of – Ginger, a startup out of Tel Aviv. This video shows it best:

Ginger specializes in helping people who are learning English as a second language). According to the website, it uses “patent-pending technology to decipher the semantic meaning and context of text input, by comparing it to billions of similar sentences from the Web.”

Ginger’s emphasis on semantics and context, combined with its home country of Israel, made me interested right away – as I understand it, Hebrew is a language even more complex than English, in that a single word can have many meanings (mah-kor means both “origin/source” and “bird beak”!) – therefore Hebrew-speakers are even more dependant on context than the average English speaker, and therefore presumably specially qualified to create a software like this.

AT A GLANCE

Ginger beats both Grammarly and Writing Dynamo right out of the gate for two reasons:

  1. Pricing model.
    • Free version (not sure the difference between this and basic)
    • Basic version = $4.90/month OR one-time payment of $39
    • Premium version = one-time payment of $89

What??? Nobody else is doing a one-time payment model! That’s awesome.

  1. Integration with MS Word

No cut/paste, no uploading documents. No restricting yourself to a few thousand words at a time. Download Ginger and it becomes a convenient yet unobtrusive button at the top of the window when you open Word, and reviews all your text in-doc with a click. FINALLY SOMEONE UNDERSTANDS MY NEEDS! (This is currently available on Windows only. They are working on a Mac version.)

THE NITTY GRITTY

I ran the same tests I ran on Grammarly (which I stole from blog Grammarist):

  • Obvious Spelling Errors – Ginger catches them all, beating Grammarly.
  • Less Obvious Spelling Errors (like “form” instead of “from”) – Ginger catches all, beating Grammarly
  • Grammar and punctuation mistakes – Ginger is split. It makes fewer mistaken corrections than Grammarly did, but fails to catch some problems, including dangling modifiers.
  • Questionable Style Choices – Ginger does as poorly as Grammarly.
  • Commonly Misused Words – Ginger does as poorly as Grammarly, but makes fewer mistaken corrections than Grammarly did.
  • Commonly Confused Words – Ginger catches two out of five, which is two better than Grammarly.
  • Redundancies – Ginger does as poorly as Grammarly, but makes fewer mistaken corrections.
  • Troublesome Compounds – Better than Grammarly, but a little strange. For instance, for the sentence “We are already to go” instead of suggesting “We are all ready to go,” Ginger suggested “We are already going.”
  • New Words, Colloquialisms and Nonstandard Variants – Ginger loses to Grammarly by just a little – suggesting “computer mice” instead of mouses.
  • American English vs. British English – Ginger wins for being adjustable between US and UK English, though while it catches “odor/odour,” it failed to catch problems with some other examples. I ran a few more of my own tests for comparison – it caught four out of six issues. Not bad.
  • Grammar Myths – Ginger ties with Grammarly.

 

EXTRA NOTES

PRO: Ginger did catch some mistakes neither I nor MS Word caught.

CON: Instead of proofing all at once and showing you the problems all at once, it proofs one sentence at a time while you watch – you can see the sentences flash at the top of the screen – and only stops when it’s found something wrong. The proofer automatically shuts off when you click to another window, so you have to wait while it works, and you can’t do anything else on your computer in the meantime.

PRO: Since they gave me a Premium trial I got to try out the text-to-speech reader. While it lacked the inflection of a human reader, it did offer the options of male or female voice, US or UK accent, so I had a lot of fun hearing my words read aloud by robot Emma Thompson.

WEIRD: Ginger also has a “Sentence Rephraser” which suggests different ways you can say things (usually synonyms). Sometimes its suggestions were helpful, other times troubling. For “She wondered if they would invite her to play with them” Ginger suggested “She wondered if they would pay for her to flirt with them.” What?!?

 

CONCLUSION

This is a tough one, especially since, as a native English speaker, I’m not in Ginger’s target audience. I do think Ginger would be helpful for someone who struggles a lot with spelling and major grammar issues, thought they shouldn’t depend on it solely. Compared to what else I’ve seen, the price and the functionality are the best. In its current condition, it’s not much use to me, personally, but I would keep an eye on it for updates.

About Stephanie Orges

Stephanie is an award-winning copywriter, aspiring novelist, and barely passable ukulele player. Here, she offers writing prompts, tips, and moderate-to-deep philosophical discussions. You can also find her on and Pinterest.
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27 Comments

  1. Hi,
    Ghotit develop writing assistance technology dedicated for people with dyslexia. I will be happy if you will be willing to visit Ghotit web site and give it a try (the best way to try Ghotit is to try it with a text written by people with dyslexia).

    Ofer

  2. I do agree totally with Staphanie though, I found Ginger to be very useful to me to a higher extent – up to 90% (I am a non-native English speaker – from India). I regularly use Ginger for my writing purposes (mails or documents). I once again agree with the writer that one should not depend on it solely. Good review.

  3. Hi,
    I installed the ginger in the computer, the basic of ginger is for me just limited some words, i was thinking it was good but…

    it embedded codes in my website and changed the codes inside my website. i try to delete the codes then the strange arrangement has change the whole post. I have to delete the whole post and make a new one,i did some revision but the codes are still there. Delete the post is my last option.

    I am also not a native English speaker, i am looking for a good program which will help me on typing and creating the blog post for my site.

    I am so disappointed about ginger but i do not know how to uninstall it. Kind of problems if i uninstall it. I really don’t know what to do with ginger in my computer. Sucking me a big time

    • I think you must be talking about the feature that edits your online text. I don’t believe I installed that feature myself (I don’t remember for sure). But you should be able to uninstall the program in Control Panel > Programs > Add or Remove Programs. Failing that, I’d suggest contacting their customer service.

    • There’s some WordPress plugins that help you analyse content. A few years ago I loved using Copy Compass plugin until they stopped updating it. Now another plugin seems even better called Scribe. Once you test it please share your feedback https://wordpress.org/plugins/scribe/

  4. Great blog and helpful review. Curious if you have reviewed ProWritingAid? I have it and think it very strong in some ways, but grammar checking is not one of its strengths. Thanks!

  5. I tried Ginger out for a while and was pleased with it for the most part. However, there was a huge glitch when it came to Facebook, and I am wondering if anyone else noticed it. I would type in responses to posts and Ginger would consistently delete a majority of the text as I wrote it and move my cursor back to close to the beginning of the response. So, if I wasn’t paying attention as I typed, I would end up with garbled sentences and missing words. Also, after it deleted what I wrote, it would not allow me to write anything else. Very frustrating! I sent a message to their customer service, but have yet to hear back from them.

  6. This program is crap. I tried to install it and it crashed in the middle of the installation. I tried to uninstall it, so I could try again and it did not show in my add/remove programs. I tried to just re-install but it kept telling me that I already had the latest update. I sent customer service an email but they never responded back to me. Over a month later, I tried again to install. This time the install went through to the end. Unfortunately when I tried to run the program in brought me to a sign in window. I tried to sign in but nothing happened. Luckily, this time I was able to remove it from my system through add/remove programs. Hope it is completely out of my system.

  7. This information is really helpful. I had just transferred moey to my online purchasing debit card to buy Grammarly but through your site, I was able to know about Ginger.As a non- native English speaker, I think I’ll try Ginger first before I spend my hard earned cash

    Regards

    Rosemary

  8. I was using the trial version of Ginger for about a month. After a while, a window kept popping up asking me to buy the software and some functionalities were reduced during this time. I didn’t mind it and kept using the trial version. About a month later, most of the functionalities were gone. It was as if Ginger was deactivated. I uninstalled and reinstalled the program but nothing happened. I get the ginger icon on my tab tray, but the settings window is completely blank so I don’t know what happened. Anyways I thought maybe they really want me to buy it now, which unfortunately, i did($88 worth of basic yearly subscription) and there’s no change at all. I still can’t use the program. What’s happening? I’ve been writing to support and they haven’t been replying except once where they asked me to change some settings on internet explorer !! I’m so disappointed. I feel there are better free proofreading Softwares that can do the job for me 🙁

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  13. Ginger takes your money and then will NOT upgrade to premium. Don’t be scammed. DO NOT give them money.

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  16. Dr. Wolfgang Ausserbauer

    I find no support once I have purchased the ginger premium, The program will not proofread where I need proofreading it jumps to the beginning of the article instead where it is needed. Where does the problem lie?
    In word or in ginger?????

  17. This is the best review of Ginger. I have read many reviews of it online but I was not satisfied. Then I open this link and read your reviews about Ginger. This is what I am looking for. Thanks for sharing such a nice Review with us. Keep it up.

  18. GUYS SAVE YOURSELF from GINGER SW

    Please don’t buy this software, they are doing auto renewal by themselves. I am sending mail to their support id for cancel my subscription and they are not paying any attention to it. They are not doing it purposely and putting me in serious issue. Now this is straight 5 months, i have sent mail 4 times but no respond. they dont have any provision for unsubscribe in their software and web site. So guys stay away from this hack.

  19. You can try Grammarian Pro2 here: http://linguisoft.com

    All these recent online checkers are patterned off the original, Grammarian (the first ever 34 years ago).

    Would love to see a review here on Grammarian Pro2.

  20. Hello there, You have done an excellent job. I’ll
    definitely digg it and personally recommend to my friends.

    I am confident they will be benefited from this
    site.

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  23. I find it not helpfully because they stole my money! I did not know what it was and then found a transaction for it on my account for over $100. I never heard of these people and not really happy with them either!

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