Top 8 Language Learning Apps Android

We all know how difficult learning a new language can be, especially if you’re way past the age of school and university education and have perhaps fallen out of studious habits. There are so many companies out there that promise a quick fix when it comes to speaking a new language: that you can learn it overnight, or within 2 weeks of intensive courses! As a person that speaks a few languages fluently, I’d have to vehemently disagree with all these claims. There are ways to get more prepared to speak a new language and it’s certainly important to learn all the things on paper, but nothing quite compares to practice. You could do a year of intensive courses in Spanish, but visit Madrid for the first time and tell me that you don’t feel out of your depth. The best way to learn a new language is to surround yourself with people that speak it, and to remove the excuse of not speaking it unless you absolutely must. That said, there are some excellent language learning apps out there that are great to prepare yourself. We count down a few of our favorites:

8. Rosetta Stone (Free)

Rosetta Stone is one of the more popular language learning programs out there in the US today, with colorful and innovative ways to learn a range of different languages – I think at this point that there are around 25 languages to learn with this free app. Of course the stuff you will find in this app amounts to the very basics of each language, and is a good way to get off the ground and begin your process of taking in all the verbs, the structure of the language and that kind of thing. – Download from Google Play

7. Learn 50 Languages (Free)

Learn 50 Languages is another app version of a website: in this case 50languages.com, which contains well over 100 lessons that cover basic vocabulary, verbs and tenses. The app brings around half of these lessons to your Android device, and places some emphasis on the idea of speaking short sentences in real world situations. So many apps seem to stick with vocabulary and look to fill your head, whereas this app understands that people will often look to learn a new language before visiting a country and will therefore need to know the various basic phrases required in order to get by. The app follows the standard European framework for teaching languages, which means it can be applied to and combined with your learnings at school or college. – Download from Google Play

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6. Babbel (Free)

Babbel brings all the best parts of the online Babbel.com service directly to your mobile device, allowing you to access it and continue your learning even when out and about. The app is designed – well, the service is designed – very much with beginners in mind, and for those who perhaps had no experience of a second language prior to taking on the course. There are all kinds of exercises to help you pick up a new language, from listening and writing to speaking. There is also an excellnt voice recognition feature built into the app which is able to pick up whether or not you are pronouncing words correctly. While the base app for Babbel is free, taking advantage of its excellent features will require a subscription. – Download from Google Play

5. Busuu (Free)

Busuu is slightly different from the other apps on the list in that it combines the idea of learning a new language online or through an app with the collective elements of social media. In fact, that’s exactly how the developers describe thair app: a socal network for learning languages, which puts you in contact with over 40 million other native language speakers. There are 150 everyday topics with over 3,000 words and phrases, but the best part of all is this ability to interact with others who may be learning a new language or already speak the language you learn. Often, when going to a classroom course to learn a new language, you will find that the teacher may know the practical stuff but has little experience living in a country that speaks the language. With Busuu, you get a direct line to those who speak it and won’t have to suffer through archaic text books. – Download from Google Play

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4. Google Translate (Free)

No list of language learning apps would be quite complete without a mention of the great Google Translate, which is not so much an app that is designed to teach but a useful tool for those who are learning. There are more detailed websites such as wordreference.com which provide a more intimate and detailed way to check what words mean, but Google Translate is great for translating small phrases or words when on the go. – Download from Google Play

3. Memrise (Free)

Memrise is one of my all-time favorite apps when it comes to learning a new language, simply because it extends past the basics such as vocabulary and tenses and includes things that might interest you otherwise – stuff like history and science. I’ve found that too many language learning apps and programs rely on the process and forget that if the content is borning, the audience will lose interest almost immediately – especially if you’re thinking of a young audience! The great thing about Memrise is that you actually feel yourself wanting to do the lessons to find out more stuff, rather than seeing each step as a chore or whatever. The flashcard style system is the backbone here, and provides a very engaging way to pick up the basics of a new language. – Download from Google Play

2. Lerni (Free)

I really like Lerni, but admit that at this point their selection of languages to choose from is somewhat limited. Still, if you’re interested in learning English, Spanish, German, French or Italian, those are all here. The main idea behind this app is to turn the process of learning a new language into a game. You listen to dialogue and then try to solve the questions posed through flashcards and memory activities. Points are rewarded for correct answers, and you can collect badges and even compare your performance with others in a general ranking table. – Download from Google Play

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1. Duolingo (Free)

I’d say that Duolingo is these days the premier app when it comes to learning a new language, but not because the app is particularly comprehensive or offers the kind of services or standards that other apps can’t match. The reason it stands out for me is the innovative approach it takes, clearly understanding that the process of learning and engaging the audience is much more important than the actual content itself. That the content has been recycled in a million text books, and what’s crucial here is reimagining the way we go about absorbing it – or inviting others to absorb it. The basic idea behind Duolingo is that you learn while in your browser using the internet, translating web pages as you browse. The whole thing then becomes a game, with points awarded for completing exercises and lost for making mistakes. – Download from Google Play

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