We live in a world where English is the most dominant language everywhere and anywhere, whether you're in Guadalupe or Hong Kong and this won't be changing anytime soon! So, to get a head start at life, learn English from tools on your mobile phone or tablet!
Learning English has a variety of benefits, it makes you more intelligent by building your multitasking skills and it improves long-term and short-term memory. English is the most widely spoken language so learning it is a must!
Throughout this article, we take a look at the best app's to learn English online in depth, from the comfort of your own home, at your own pace.
Babbel was founded in January 2008 and is the world’s first ever language-learning application, available in 14 diverse languages (of course in Shakespeare's language: English!). It is available both on the web, as well as on Android and iOS.
Whether you’re a beginner starting from scratch or you’re confident in English and just want to strengthen your knowledge, Babbel is perfect for you as it caters to everyone’s language needs.
- Vocabulary lessons on different topics, such as sports or health.
- Courses with tongue twisters, idioms, colloquialisms and all the different sayings you need to know.
- A review of each lesson.
Each lesson takes around 12 minutes and once you’re finished you get a grade out of 58. The lesson plan is extremely well organised. You are given a detailed explanation on the lesson, for example, “How to order in a restaurant”, and you then answer some questions. It is exceptionally interactive and you can choose from a wide range of topics to learn from.
Whether you learn better by writing, listening, reading or speaking, Babbel is right for you! It aims to tailor to everyone’s needs and addresses real-life topics that are relevant in your day-to-day life. Whether you’re taking a trip to an Anglophone country or just want to improve your English as a hobby, Babbel is perfect.
However, like everything, Babbel has its pros and its cons.
The website and the phone application are extremely attractive, the design is easy to navigate around for all ages. The lessons are extremely detailed and interactive, which makes learning English fun and not a chore.
On the other hand, there is one slight downside. You must subscribe to a paying membership after a certain time if you wish to continue with Babbel, which costs around $13 per month.
However, for all the benefits you will receive, $13 per month can be worth it, right?
Duolingo is an online language-learning platform, launched in 2011 and already has 68 online esol courses for 23 languages, including the most widely spoken language worldwide: English!
Like Babbel and Rosetta Stone, Duolingo is also available to download on iOS and Android.
Duolingo takes a completely different approach to Babbel and Rosetta Stone.
Essentially, it enables you to learn English vocabulary and phrases by translating short texts, from English to your mother tongue and vice versa. Learn which translation tools are best for learning English here.
It also has dictation exercises, so you type the English text as you hear it, which will definitely improve your English listening and understanding of the language. If Listening is the way you learn best, Check out these podcasts for learning English.
The exercises are short, so you can play just before going to bed, or whilst you're waiting for the bus. There is absolutely no pressure and no strings attached! You don't need to dedicate too much time to Duolingo, but you can still significantly improve your level of the English language.
Duolingo has adopted a timed practice option, you are given 20 questions with 30 seconds to answer. This feature is perfect if you're interested in doing a crash course in English, as it can train your brain to think quickly in English.
Have you just finished your year abroad in an Anglophone speaking country and just need to keep practicing? Then look no further and download Duolingo!
Unlike Babbel and Rosetta Stone, Duolingo is completely free! There are a few extras you can opt to pay for, like the timed practice option, but this is not obligatory and you can still learn English on Duolingo without paying a penny.
FluentU uses real-world videos, such as TV adverts, snippets from the news and music videos by turning them into English learning experiences. It has adopted a completely different method to the traditional app's, such as Babbel and Duolingo. It eases you into the English language and culture slowly and you'll learn the real English, exactly how it's spoken in daily life.
It is available on iOS but not yet on Android.
It has a wide range of interesting videos, in a variety of fun topics.
You're probably thinking that diving straight into English videos will be tough, but you are wrong! FluentU makes watching English videos fun and easy, there are interactive captions, which allow you to tap on a word, to see a photo and its definition. For example:
For example, you can click the word "brought" and this will appear:
You can learn every single word in every video!
FluentU keeps up to date with all the vocabulary that you learn and suggests different videos you can watch that include words you have already learned. This emphasises all your knowledge of English vocabulary and makes your learning experience personal to you.
However, FluentU does come at a small price of $8 a month. But, it is still cheaper than most of the traditional app's out there!
Mosalingua is available on Android and iOS. This app has adopted a very different approach to the other language-learning app's out there. It helps you remember sentences and vocabulary by using flash cards with a lot of repetition.
So, once you have learned new vocabulary, you can memorise them over and over again until they're fully drilled into your brain!
How does it work?
When you click on the app, you complete an English-language basic test to gauge your level. This gives you a clear understanding on your level and the app can direct you to learn the right vocab and phrases. The app then comes up with an English-learning plan personalised to you!
Mosalingua uses full and clear sentences, rather than short and ambiguous phrases. The app allows you to record yourself on the flash card and you can directly review your pronunciation with the English native speaker's pronunciation.
Mosalingua's full version costs a tiny $5! Cheaper than a McDonald's happy meal! So, there is absolutely no excuse to learn English.
So, we have seen that there are a variety of ways to learn English through your phone or tablet, and it doesn't always mean you have to read many boring old English books or complete an endless amount of grammar exercises, nor does it include memorising vocab (we can all agree that learning boring old vocabulary can be painful)!
So, we highly recommend you download these English-language learning app's and see which one is for you. Not every app is suitable for everyone and not everyone wants to pay, everyone is different and we all learn in different ways!