review

Mango Languages Review – Pretty Good For Beginners

Quick Review

3.5 

Summary

Mango Languages is a pretty good resource with numerous languages available along with their regional variations.  It’ll work the best for beginners or for those interested in studying a few languages at the same time. Anybody past the intermediate level won’t find Mango Languages very useful.

Quality

It is well designed, has a beautiful interface, and is intuitive to use.

Thoroughness

There are some gaps in terms of writing and grammar, along with a lack of materials for intermediate or higher level students.

Value

The price is fair and will give you access to materials for over 70 languages.

Price

A subscription to Mango Languages costs $7.99/mo for one language or $17.99/mo for all languages.

Alternatives: Babbel and Lingodeer are somewhat similar but a bit better, while Duolingo is free.

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Du Chinese Review: Updated For 2020 – Learn With Interesting Content

Quick Review

4.5 

Summary

Du Chinese is one of the best resources for learning Chinese. This app will help you to improve your Chinese reading skills, as well as listening comprehension. There are articles across six different levels – from Beginner to Master. The design of this app is absurdly good, making it exceptionally easy to use. The biggest weakness is that new content isn’t added frequently enough.

Quality

Amazingly high-quality with lots of useful features.

Thoroughness

New articles are added fairly slowly, but they age well.

Value

You can read some articles for free.

Price

A subscription to Du Chinese costs $11.99/month. A six-month plan costs $54.99. A one-year subscription would cost $89.99/month. There is also a limited selection of lessons available for free.

The Chairman’s Bao is the biggest competitor of Du Chinese. They release far more content, but the design isn’t nearly as good. They also don’t have the English translations that Du Chinese offers, making it potentially less useful for beginner students.

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Babbel Review – Not Groundbreaking But Good, Trusted Courses

Quick Review

4.1 

Summary

Babbel is an online language-learning platform with over 1 million active users. It’s available on the web, for iOS, and for Android. The app aims to get learners to a conversational level as quickly as possible through the use of a variety of exercises and spaced repetition for review. The courses are well put together and relatively inexpensive; there are 14 different languages available.

Quality

It’s well-designed and the content is immediately useful.

Thoroughness

The material provided is effective and covers a lot, but isn’t ideal for advanced levels.

Value

The price is relatively low for what’s offered, but you’ll have to purchase each language separately.

Price

Babbel uses a recurring subscription model and offers a 20-day money-back guarantee. Price per month depends on the length of the subscription and only includes access to one language.

Monthly – $12.95/mo
Every 3 Months – $8.95/mo
Every 6 Months – $7.45/mo
Every year – $6.95/mo

Languages: Babbel offers courses for 14 different languages: Dutch, Danish, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Spanish and Turkish.

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The Chairman’s Bao Review – Learn From The News

Quick Review

4.5 

Summary:

The Chairman’s Bao (TCB) is an online graded newspaper for learners of Chinese. New articles covering current events in China and abroad are published daily, and the difficulty levels range from HSK1 to HSK6+. Additional features include audio recordings, a pop-up dictionary, grammar notes, flashcards, and more. This is one of my favorite resources for studying Chinese.

Quality

The app is easy to use and the content is super useful.

Thoroughnes

The reading comprehension exercises, language tools, writing practice and massive library of news stories make up for the lack of English translations.

Value

For how much this resource has to offer, it’s well worth the price.

Price

A subscription to The Chairman’s Bao costs $10/month or $80/year, with three and six-month options at $25 and $45 respectively.

Use the coupon code ‘alr10’ to save 10% on a subscription to The Chairman’s Bao.

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Clozemaster Review: Limited Focus But Fun Way To Grow Vocab

Quick Review

4.1 

Summary

Ideal for people who are already at an upper beginner/intermediate level, Clozemaster will help you build your vocabulary and learn new words and sentences in context. While you won’t learn much grammar or improve your speaking and writing much, it is great at what it does and the videogame aspect makes it fun and addictive to work though. Although the exercises are all pretty much identical, there are various ways in which you can increase the difficulty and Clozemaster’s free account is almost as good as the Pro User one.

Quality

Very easy to use with thousands upon thousands of sentences for you to work through, Clozemaster’s main exercises are well-designed though some features are a bit hit and miss.

Thoroughness

Although you aren’t given any explanations, Clozemaster’s huge database of sentences allows you to learn words in context.

Value

The free version offers a ton of value, but for those who use Clozemaster regularly, it may be worth upgrading to a Pro account.

Price

The free version is very useful, but you can upgrade to a pro account for $8/month or $60/year.

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