An Honest Review of Speaky With Image of Girl Using Phone

Speaky Review: Better Than Other Language Exchange Apps?


Rating 3.7


Speaky is a social language-learning app for people interested in language exchange. It’s available for iOS, Android, and the web. Users can chat with other language learners, share photos, leave voice messages or even have voice calls. The basic features on Speaky are free to use, but access to more than five translations per day requires a subscription.

Quality 3.0

There are some dedicated language learners on Speaky but not as many as similar apps.

Thoroughness 3.5

The platform is easy to use but lacks advanced features.

Value 4.5

Speaky is mostly free to use, extra features are available for a subscription.

I Like
  • It’s mostly free.
  • It’s easy to use.
  • There are a lot of users.
  • There are tons of languages
I Don’t Like
  • Many community members don’t actually seem interested in language exchange.
  • The web version doesn’t work well.
  • There are no extra social features.

The basic features on Speaky are free to use. A premium membership is available for a subscription.

Speaky is a language exchange app. It facilitates exchange by allowing users to chat with others in the language they’re learning. Its function is pretty simple and straightforward — search for a partner with a reciprocal language combination and say hello.

An Honest Review of Rype App With Image of Man Using Computer

Rype App Review: I Wouldn’t Recommend It To Anybody

Rype App

Rating 1.8


Rype is a resource that provides language learners with access to one-on-one lessons with teachers. According to its advertising, you’ll be able to “Learn anytime, anywhere, on-the-go.” Users purchase a subscription package that contains a certain number of lessons per month. The lessons are 30-minutes long and are easy to schedule.

Quality 2.0

The platform is very easy to use, but there aren’t many teacher details and lessons take place on Skype.

Thoroughness 2.0

There seems to be a range of experience levels on Rype and a very small number of teachers.

Value 1.5

The hourly rates are higher than similar online tutor options and you have to commit to a subscription.

I Like
  • The interface is very easy to use.
  • The 30-minute lesson length.
  • A subscription grants access to lessons in all languages offered.
I Don’t Like
  • There isn’t a lot of information provided on teachers.
  • I don’t think the monthly subscription model is worth it.
  • The selection of teachers for some languages is extremely limited.

The price varies per subscription package and number of lessons each month. This ranges from $59.99-179.99.

The availability of online one-on-one language courses has skyrocketed in recent years, and it’s made it possible for just about anyone with an internet connection to find a suitable language tutor.

An Honest Review of Lingvist With Image of Woman Holding Phone

Lingvist Review: Putting Their Courses To The Test


Rating 4.0


Lingvist is a language learning resource that uses spaced repetition and flashcards to help you build your vocabulary in a new language. There are five language courses made for English speakers, and some of these have an extra challenges section with additional reading, speaking, grammar, and listening practice. Lingvist is straightforward, easy to use, and most effective for beginners or intermediate learners.

Quality 4.0

The interface is easy to use and practice is enjoyable, but the grammar explanations aren’t great.

Thoroughness 4.0

The vocabulary practice is great, but the additional features are somewhat limited and vary by language.

Value 4.0

A subscription isn’t super expensive, but it isn’t the best resource for a comprehensive education.

I Like
  • It’s easy to use
  • Learning new words is fun
  • It’s effective at teaching new vocabulary
I Don’t Like
  • The grammar explanations aren’t very helpful
  • Practice can get monotonous
  • Limited speaking and writing opportunities

Pricing options include $9.99 a month or $79.99 per year.

Most language learning tools either aim to do something different or to do something that’s been done before exceptionally well. Learning new words with flashcards isn’t a novel idea, but it can be pretty effective.

An Honest Review Live Lingua With Image of Boy Using Computer

Live Lingua Review: My Experience With Their Lessons

Live Lingua

Rating 3.8


Live Lingua is an online language school that pairs students with certified teachers for one-on-one online classes. The platform aims to provide a more personalized service than online tutor directories by assigning a personal class coordinator and a customized curriculum for each student. Lessons are available in seven different popular languages and for a variety of different courses.

Quality 4.5

All teachers are native speakers and receive additional training through Live Lingua.

Thoroughness 3.5

Lots of extra free material, but with mistakes. There are specialized course options, and video lessons happen on Skype.

Value 3.5

More expensive than other online classes and less flexible, but more personalized.

I Like
  • The huge library of free resources
  • The different course options
I Don’t Like
  • The layout of the site is strange and doesn’t feel very professional
  • Relying on email to schedule lessons isn’t efficient
  • Limited flexibility in choosing a teacher

The hourly rate for classes on Live Lingua ranges from $24 – $29 depending on the certificate, language, and number of classes you purchase. The first lesson is free.

In the words of its founders, Live Lingua is a “boutique” online language school.

Busuu Review: Some Courses Are Better Than Others


Rating 3.3


Busuu is a digital language-learning app with over 90 million registered users. The resource offers vocabulary and grammar practice through short, self-paced study exercises. It also has a social aspect that allows users to get writing and pronunciation feedback from native speakers. It is available on the web, iOS, and Android.

Quality 3.3

The layout is great, and the quality for non-Asian languages is decent, but there were significant errors in the Chinese course.

Thoroughness 3.0

It has some good explanations but doesn’t often offer much in the way of in-depth explanations.

Value 3.3

Busuu is relatively inexpensive, but there are more thorough and efficient resources out there.

I Like
  • The layout is easy to use and engaging
  • The conversation lessons are especially useful
  • The social feature is great
I Don’t Like
  • Translations aren’t provided for some exercises.
  • The Chinese course is low-quality.
  • The grammar explanations and practice could be better.

Premium Subscriptions

One month: $13.95
Six months: $50.70 ($8.45/month)
One Year: $40.70 ($3.48/month)

What Is Busuu?

Boasting a user base of over 90 million, Busuu is a heavyweight in the digital language-learning landscape. It was launched in 2008 and has remained a popular and relatively low-cost option for language learners.

An Honest Review of Word Dive With Image of Woman Using Phone With Headphones

Word Dive Review: Falls Short Compared To Similar Apps

Word Dive

Rating 2.8


Word Dive uses artificial intelligence and short exercises to help language learners commit study items to long-term memory. The app provides instruction in ten languages and is available for desktop, iOS, and Android.

Quality 3.5

It’s very easy to use, but I thought the material was limited.

Thoroughness 2.5

You can practice vocabulary and grammar, but there are almost no grammar explanations.

Value 2.5

It isn’t very expensive, but other resources are similarly priced and more comprehensive.

I Like
  • It’s convenient for mobile language practice
  • It’s fun to use
  • Partial credit answers motivate you to stretch yourself
I Don’t Like
  • There are almost no grammar explanations.
  • I found the exercises repetitive.

A subscription starts at $9.99. For 3 months it is $27.99. 6 months $47.99. 12 months $79.99. 

Combine a strong affinity for things under the sea and a desire to make the lives of language learners easier, and you might produce something similar to Word Dive.

An Honest Review of Chatterbug With Image of Girl Holding Phone

Chatterbug Review: Self-Study + 1-1 Classes – Does It Work?


Rating 3.7


Chatterbug is a language learning platform designed with the aim of bringing together the convenience of digital learning apps and the value of one-on-one speaking practice. It was founded in 2016 and currently offers courses in German, Spanish, and French. Some of its features are available on iOS and Android; the full version is available for desktop.

Quality 3.5

The Live Lessons are great, but the other practice activities are somewhat limited and the interface isn’t very intuitive.

Thoroughness 4.0

The Live Lessons provide quality practice, and there are good grammar explanations, but reading and writing practice are limited.

Value 3.5

It isn’t super cheap, but the Casual and Serious plans could be worth it if you like the platform.

I Like
  • The Live Lessons are engaging and structured.
  • Scheduling Live Lessons is super easy and flexible.
I Don’t Like
  • The interface is cluttered on desktop.
  • The reading and writing practices are limited.
  • There were errors in the reading material.

The price of the recurring monthly subscription varies according to the number of Live Lessons you take each month.

Lite Plan, 1 lesson/month: $21.65/month Casual Plan, 4 lessons/month: $81.18/month Serious Plan, 8 lessons/month: $151.53/month Ultimate Plan, unlimited lessons: $432.95/month

Subscribers can purchase extra lessons each month for around $20/lesson.

Aside from enrolling in a course at a language school, there are two popular routes to take in learning a new language: find a tutor, or try out a digital language app.

An Honest Review of HiNative With Image of Woman Holding Phone

HiNative Review: Useful But Not Exceptional Q&A App


Rating 3.7


HiNative is a Q&A app for language learners that want to have questions answered by native speakers. It’s available for iOS, Android and desktop, and it has over three million registered users. A free version is available that offers the basic features of the app.

Quality 3.5

The app is pretty basic, but it works.

Thoroughness 3.5

Many users are very helpful, but not all questions receive intelligent responses.

Value 4.0

The basic functions of the app are available for free, but you’ll need to pay for audio or video features.

I Like
  • The community is active. Most of my questions received quick responses.
  • The points system is rewarding.
  • The free version is very useful.
I Don’t Like
  • Many of the questions in my feed were unanswerable.
  • The community could be better.

The basic features of HiNative are free to use. A premium subscription is available for $9.99/month paid monthly, or annually $34.99 payment

While learning a new language, one of the best resources available is other people. Native speakers are one of the most reliable sources for authoritative answers to your language questions. They know intuitively and deeply how the language is supposed to be used.

An Honest Review of Tandem With Image of Girl Wearing Headphones and Writing

Tandem Review: A Tinder-esque Language Exchange App?


Rating 4.7


Tandem is a popular language exchange app with over one million active users. It’s available for iOS and Android and aims to bring language learners from all over the world together. It’s largely centered around its chat capabilities and language tools that facilitate communication, but there is also a tutoring service offered in the app.

Quality 5.0

There are lots of active language learners, especially those looking to pair with native English speakers.

Thoroughness 4.5

The interface is intuitive and the language tools are simple and effective, though you’ll quickly run out of free translations.

Value 4.5

The free version is all most people will need. Tandem Pro doesn’t add a ton of extra value.

I Like
  • There are plenty of language partners
  • The interface is easy to use and attractive
  • The free version offers a lot of value
I Don’t Like
  • You’ll need to use other learning resources as well

There is a limited free version of Tandem and a pro version available at $6.99 for one month, $10.67/month for three months, and $6.67/month for a year’s subscription.

When learning a new language by myself, I often wonder if I’m studying the right things. There’s so much that a book can’t teach you about a language. It’s easy enough to look up a translation of a phrase like “How are you?” for example, but knowing whether people actually speak like that is equally important.