Apps are becoming increasingly popular tools for learning languages. Thanks to technology, there are many French learning apps available to download. Some of them focus on French grammar, others focus on vocabulary and conjugations using flashcards, whilst some focus solely on speaking French.
Truth be told, when it comes to French learning apps the sky really is the limit.
Language Apps have become popular for several reasons. Maybe you have a hectic lifestyle and only really have a few minutes to dedicate to your French learning. Maybe you want something to do on your 30 minute commute to work as you are offline. Maybe you want to practice your French with audiobooks whilst you’re working out at the gym.
Apps can make your French learning a lot more interactive and fun. You can learn at your own pace. They are convenient and you can learn from pretty much anywhere.
They are also great for learners who don’t quite feel confident enough to learn French in a classroom setting or with a one-to-one French tutor just yet.
That’s why today we’re covering 5 of the best French apps on the market, with all the details you need to know.
Take a look:
Brainscape – Great for learning with flashcards
Brainscape uses an algorithm-designed flashcard based learning approach. The app will drill you on French vocabulary and verb conjugations with audio. The words you keep getting wrong are the ones that will come up more frequently. Through repetition you will effectively learn thousands of new French words.
There are four learning levels and the higher levels include French flashcards on topics such as French idioms, faux-amis, politics and history. Brainscape is a wonderful app to start with to build a solid foundation in French.
Learn French with Busuu – Great for interactive learning
Busuu is another popular app to learn French with. It has four levels starting with A1 (beginner) up to B2 (Upper intermediate). Before using the app, you will be offered a preliminary test to assess what level you are at (this is not compulsory).
Some of the French learning activities on Busuu include gap filling, word puzzles, audio listening tasks and identifying words.
One of the best aspects of this app is that once you have completed a written exercise, native French speakers from the Busuu community can help to correct your work, and give you advice on how you can improve next time.
A lot of the content is free, but you can subscribe to premium ($12.95 a month) or premium plus ($13.95 a month) which unlocks everything.
Lingopie – Great for Binge watching
My French learning at school was so heavily focused on textbooks and comprehension worksheets. So much so that when I moved to Paris as part of my Erasmus experience, it was a bit of a shock to listen to how ‘real’ French was spoken.
If I could go back in time, I would have implemented more French listening in order to be better prepared.
All the movies and series come with 2 sets of subtitles – one in English and one in French. As you are watching, you can click on any of the words in the subtitles and you will get an immediate translation from French.
It also has a microphone feature where you can repeat certain words and phrases. The system will then grade your pronunciation accuracy. Awesome!
French Today- Great for Audiobooks
Ok, I’m not even being biased here – the French Today app is a wonderful tool for French learners.
Most of the time, when you download a French audiobook, you need to download a .zip file from Dropbox, handle PDF files, maybe a bunch of MP3 audio files… Then open one or multiple PDF files and try to find the corresponding audio file, etc… Or connect to a website and remain connected to be able to work with your lessons…
With the French Today app, all the download and files are handled automatically. You can hide / reveal the English translation, change the audio recording speeds, skip back… The app remembers where your were in both the audio and transcript.
The French Today app allows you to listen to and read French Today 2.5 hour free bilingual audiobook: it features the first part of the story of Mary, the main character of the ongoing novel at the core of French Today “À Moi Paris” French learning method.
The French story of the novel is recorded at tow or three levels of pronunciation : super enunciated (only for the beginner level), normal, and modern French (fast !!!). These different audio speeds are great to develop a sense of how French is spoken today, and get over how entire words glide or even disappear in everyday French.
You can then use the app to read and listen to all the French Today audiobooks : easy bilingual novels, the À Moi Paris learning method, but also audiobooks on French numbers, French pronunciation… even French fairy tales and poetry! You’ll be able to read along with the French texts, with or without the English translations.
Something I really enjoyed is that you can even use the app when you are on the go: you don’t even need to be connected to the internet – Bingo!
Tandem- Great for speaking with other learners
Tandem is a fantastic app for speaking with other language learners. You will be matched with a native French speaker, so you can practice speaking French with them, and in return you can speak English with them (or any other language you are fluent in) to help them learn their target language.The app is slick and really easy to navigate. And free.
You can type, send voice notes, or even video call. Using Tandem should really help your French conversational skills and hopefully boost your confidence – this will depend on how patient your French teacher is though. This is why it’s better to be already somewhat conversant in French before you use Tandem. French people can be a bit overzealous when it comes to correcting French learners!
I cannot emphasize how important it is to put your French knowledge to practice through speaking with others!
So, all these apps are great in their own ways. I can’t really tell you which one is the best because everyone has their own learning styles and preferences.
But mixing and matching some of these apps could be a good idea, so you get a bit of grammar, speaking and listening practice.
Are there any other French apps you are fond of? Please share the name in the comments below (no links though: our anti-spam system would block it)!