Language learning apps are said to be revolutionizing language learning. Apps are a great way to learn the German language because you'll always have them at your fingertips and they are either free or a more affordable option. However, they are intended as study aids and should ideally be used in combination with other resources. Here is a list of the best apps for learning German, anywhere, any time (there’s really no excuse now).
Drops focuses on one thing, vocabulary and it does it extremely well. This app is one of our favorites purely because of its beautiful design. Drops offers short, engaging word games with mnemonic associations to build vocabulary. Whether its matching pictures to their translations or unscrambling letters to practice spelling, the exercises feel like fun games rather than learning. They have a 5-minute session limit which makes Drops incredibly addictive and immersive– which is not a bad thing when it comes to learning German!
Similar to Drops, Memrise focus is on vocabulary, however, other features include a pronunciation guide to help you speak like a local by recording and comparing your pronunciation with native speakers'. The awesome part of Memrise is its spaced repetition. Memrise’s algorithm calculates when and how often you should review each word and will then send you reminders. Cool, right?
Our list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning our very own Tandem app. Here at Tandem, we believe that speaking is the fastest way to fluency! That’s why we’ve developed an awesome free app that allows members to connect with native speakers all over the world and practice 160+ languages via text, audio message, and video call. With millions of members, Tandem is one of the largest language learning communities out there, so you are sure to find a language exchange partner that fits for you.
This app is a must-download for all German language learners. It’s all well and good when you finally come to terms with German vocabulary, however, the struggle is real when there are three different ways to say “the” in German…. Yeah, it’s sadly true! Der Die Das helps you to learn and memorize the articles of German nouns through interactive quizzes. It has grammar tips and a complete summary of rules and guidelines for determining German articles. You are also able to listen to how the words are pronounced and can add words to your “favorites.”
LingoDeer started out as a language learning app for only Japanese, Korean and Chinese but has since added German, French, Spanish, among others. LingoDeer might not be as well-known as other language learning apps but is considered to be an alternative and even superior to Duolingo. Crafted by language teachers, LingoDeer's curriculum and exercises train your reading, listening, speaking and writing skills. What we particularly love about LingoDeer is their customizable experience– even of the voice of the narrator– and offline mode so even if you're off the grid, you can still learn German. Yay!
Chatterbug helps you master the German language through a curriculum that tackles German grammar and vocabulary, with flashcards, reading and writing exercises. Chatterbug also offers video lessons with native speaking tutors. One cool thing about the app is that the more you study and practice your German, the more customized your curriculum becomes from Chatterbugs software that learns your strengths and weaknesses.
Duolingo offers lessons through listening exercises, flashcards, and multiple-choice questions to teach new German phrases, German verbs, and words. Duolingo is probably most known for its motivation strategy by having a persistent owl named “Duo” checking up on you to make sure you're on track to reach your goals. It also shows your "streak", which is the number of days in a row that you’ve reached your goal. Don't lose your streak!
All the apps mentioned above are free to download from both the Google Play and App Store but may require a subscription in order to access all courses and features. While none of these apps are a stand-alone language course, they are an excellent addition to a language learner’s toolbox that helps improve your German language skills.