Learning a new language can be a daunting task, even in the Internet era when so many resources are available to you free of charge. While you may be among those rare geniuses who are capable of progressing to impressive levels of proficiency with nothing but a dictionary, grammar book, and willpower, chances are you'll be overwhelmed if you take such a traditional, dry approach to language learning. Luckily, getting acquainted with a new language and building your proficiency in it doesn't have to be such a difficult task and may be as simple as knowing which app to download in order to enjoy a much more focused and carefully designed learning experience. With that in mind, below you'll find the list of the top ten best Android apps for language learning which are currently available for download from the Google Play Store, listed in no particular order.
Babbel – Learn Languages
The Babbel method for learning languages isn't just extremely straightforward and accessible but is also perfectly suitable for being delivered in the form of a mobile app. The official Babbel courses for Android devices will let you take your first steps toward becoming proficient in your language of choice by focusing on three key areas: comprehension, retention, and confidence. While no language learning method will turn you into a polyglot overnight, Babbel will do its very best to make sure you're enjoying the ride, no matter how long it takes.
Memrise is far from the first program that's seeking to gamify the process of learning a new language but it truly takes that concept to the next level in terms of scope and production values. Besides being supririsngly entertaining, the course is backed by hard science, having originally been developed by Princeton neuroscientist Greg Detre. In addition to being robust enough to get a complete beginner to a moderate proficiency level in all of the world's most widely spoken languages, Memrise also does an excellent job at keeping one's excitement levels associated with language learning impressively high. Believe us when we tell you that's no small feat for an app that effectively teaches you about the French past subjunctive because that compound verb form is truly unique in regards to how much it sucks.
HelloTalk Learn Languages
The main point of learning a new language is being able to communicate with others, so why not start your road to proficiency there? Sure, trying to speak with a 50-word vocabulary can be daunting, but there's no better way to overcome your fears than just facing them. That's the main concept behind the HelloTalk Android app which will pair you with native or fluent speakers that will help you learn your target language while also benefitting from the fact that you'll be ready to return the favor.
Speaky - Language Exchange
Speaky is conceptually similar to HelloTalk, though its execution is somewhat different and more focused on asynchronous communication with your language learning partners. That approach may be more suitable for you if your time is limited and can rarely allow for real-time lessons. Going forward, the app is also planning to add support for audio messages and file sharing, thus placing an even larger emphasis on its "learn when you find the time to do so" philosophy.
The Beelinguapp is a fantastic tool for getting accustomed to the sound of any particular language and practice your pronunciation with no pressure, being largely reliant on playing audiobooks that you can verbally follow using karaoke-like animated text highlights. While such a method leaves something to be desired in terms of grammar and hence probably isn't enough to help you become somewhat proficient in one of its 13 supported languages on its own, the Beelinguapp is still a fantastic tool for complementing a more traditional language learning service.
Rosetta Stone: Learn Languages
Rosetta Stone is perhaps the most well-known language learning course on the planet, and its mobile version is just as capable (and pricey) as its desktop counterpart, being able to serve as a standalone tool or as an Android-powered service meant to support your efforts to learn a new language on a PC or through an Internet browser. While its traditional approach to learning a new language won't be everyone's cup of tea, the lengthy free trial offered by the app should be more than enough to allow you to make an informed decision on whether the Rosetta Stone method is the one you want to have direct your hunger for knowledge in the future.
Duolingo is essentially the face of the new generation of language learning services, with its disruptive model already attracting over 200 million people. While it offers a premium subscription tier, the entirety of its knowledge base is free for anyone to use, whereas its text certification program will provide you with a unique opportunity to test your language skills while still supporting the app's developers. As is the case with most Android platforms on this list, Duolingo probably won't make you fluent on its own, but it's at the very least a fantastic tool for getting your foot in the language learning door.
Lingorilla is without a doubt the simplest app on this list and one that makes no claims of being able to teach you the nuances of any of its supported languages on its own, but it's still an entertaining tool that's enjoyable to use and can help reinforce your knowledge through effectively illustrated and thus highly memorable flashcards. If you're primarily looking for a language retention tool and want to experience a service that isn't run as a multi-million dollar business, Lingorilla is worth giving a try.
Quizlet is another Android app for language learning based on flashcards, though it's much more robust than Lingorilla and features a gamified design reminiscent of Memrise. It's also praised by millions of people around the world and boasts a structure that makes it suitable for being integrated into a classroom, so it's not only a great choice for language learners but also an attractive proposition for teachers, professors, and tutors looking to ennoble their lessons.
Tinycards by Duolingo
While originally designed as an extension of Duolingo, the Tinycards Android app is more than capable of serving as a standalone tool for both language learning and retention, boasting a compact design that allows you to choose which packs of flashcards you want to download from its massive and constantly growing database, in addition to providing you with the option of creating your very own personalized decks. Coupled with extremely polished and intuitive design, the service offers a lot of value even if you don't use the main Duolingo app on a regular basis, or ever.