Entender and comprender both mean to understand. Although comprender is very popular among students, natives don’t use it as much. The reason comprender is so popular among beginner students and tourists is that comprender is a regular verb so it’s taught before entender, which is a stem-changing verb. Many students quit Spanish before even knowing that entender also exists, so they stick to comprender forever. If you are a student and you want to sound more fluent, use entender instead of comprender.
Here are some search results made on 2021 using Google for Spanish language pages only.
Entiendo, entiendes, entiende / entendemos, entendéis, entienden. Stem changing e ⇒ ie.
355,000,000 results for Spanish pages only.
Comprendo, comprendes, comprende / comprendemos, comprendéis, comprenden.
82,400,000 results for Spanish pages only.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use comprender at all, it means you should use entender more often.
I think we use comprender from a more psychological, personality point of view, and entender from a more speech, linguistics or phonetics point of view.
Originally posted on 20070813. Latest update 20210414 (spanishNY.com) top