arabic-apps

The 6 Best Apps for Learning Arabic Like a Boss

Believe it or not, there are apps for more than just playing games, watching movies, streaming TV and sharing photos.

So, instead of hunting Pokémon all day, take a tiny break and learn some Arabic.

Research shows approximately 75 billion apps were downloaded in 2015, which means there are awesome apps for everybody, including Arabic learners.

As a matter of fact, there’s absolutely no shortage of Arabic options in our app stores. The problem is only that there are too many apps—and too few that teach the right type of Arabic in the right ways.

One key mistake that many less-than-excellent apps make is not considering that Modern Standard Arabic has no native speakers—it is primarily used for reading, writing, academic purposes and delivering the news, but it’s not anybody’s first language or conversational language of choice.

Plus, many developers are new to the language learning game, and continue to make rather silly mistakes in terms of spelling, pronunciation, grammar and so on, as they don’t have quite enough knowledge to teach the Arabic language in all its difficulty and complexity.

Luckily, FluentU took over the task of selecting the crème de la crème of Arabic apps for you! We’ve only got the best and brightest lined up here, so you don’t have to fret over what to download.

Here in this post, we’ll look at some of the best Arabic learning apps to help you sharpen your Arabic skills at any level.

Before we move on, let’s figure out why you should learn Arabic with apps in the first place.

Benefits of Learning Arabic with Apps

Arabic learning apps have several advantages that set them apart from other learning tools. Here are just a few!

The freedom of choosing when and where to learn

The idea here is that you’re free to choose when and where to learn. For example, if you’re too busy to spend time taking a language course, then learning with apps is the best choice. This way, you’re learning with a personal teacher who follows you everywhere you go—cool, isn’t it?

Given the fact that there are no hard deadlines, you’re less likely to be stressed. There are no teachers who will bombard you with successive lessons, exercises and homework when you’re not ready to move on just yet, so you can be certain you understand each lesson fully before progressing.

The quick and easy access

Instead of carrying heavy textbooks and dictionaries with you everywhere, you can use two or three apps instead. For example, if you wanted to use a word in the past tense, you can just pull your smartphone out and find it at your fingertips, rather than taking three large tomes wherever you go.

The lack of a scary price tag—they’re all free (or cheap)

While learning apps have traditionally been offered for free, many developers have recently started charging minor fees. According to a Fiksu study, the average cost per app in May 2015 was $1.89, which means that most paid apps are significantly more affordable compared to language courses, which can cost up to hundreds or thousands of dollars.

So now that you know the benefits of learning with apps, you might be asking, “How can I find the best learning app for me?” We’ve got you covered there too.

Criteria You Should Consider When Choosing an App

You may be confused about which apps to use and which to avoid. We recommend that you don’t get distracted by utilizing too many apps at once. Instead, use a limited number of apps and cherry-pick them wisely. Here are some criteria that you should consider while choosing an app:

User rates

When choosing an app, look at users’ reviews thoroughly, and pay close attention to what they say. For example, if some customers have complained about the frequency of ads popping up in the app and you know you’re not a fan of pop-up ads, avoid downloading this app and try another one—or pay whatever fee the app is requesting to run app-free.

Language level

You might be tempted to choose an app that looks more challenging. Interestingly, downloading apps that suit your level is the best way to learn effectively, because you’re learning exactly what you need to learn, as well as reinforcing lessons you’ve recently learned. Also, this prevents you from getting overwhelmed or displeased.

Likewise, don’t choose an app that’s too far below your level. If you’re close to fluent in Arabic, there’s no need for you to download an app of basic Arabic expressions, because there will be nothing new for you to learn.

Features

A good Arabic learning app must contain facilitating features for you, as you’re looking for easier ways to learn Arabic. Features such as audio recordings, flashcards and adjustable playback speeds, for example, are critical for user satisfaction and engagement. The app becomes nearly useless if the content is objectionable and the features are distracting, or if there are no real learning features to speak of, so take this into account.

The 6 Best Apps for Learning Arabic Like a Boss

Arabic Alphabet – TenguLogi

arabic-apps

Availability: Android

Usability: Works offline, needs Internet connection to listen to recordings

Levels: First-timer, beginner

Price: Free, in-app purchases

This app specializes in teaching you the Arabic alphabet.

To help you use the other apps below, you should start with this one. Most of the apps below are dedicated to people who can already read (or at least spell) words in Arabic.

Arabic Alphabet – TenguLogi uses easy-to-navigate lessons to help you learn the Arabic alphabet. Each lesson is represented as a flashcard that contains the letter, the transliteration, how to pronounce the letter and how to write it in several placements in a sentence. Along with teaching you how to write, the app teaches you the Arabic vowels, grammar and numbers from 0 to 99.

Learn Arabic – Language Guide

arabic-apps

Availability: Android

Usability: Works offline

Levels: First-timer, beginner

Price: Free, in-app purchases

The most basic application that beginners can use to get off to a great start, Learn Arabic – Learning Guide teaches you the fundamentals of Modern Standard Arabic and helps you learn numbers, alphabet, vocabulary, grammar and basic conversational skills.

One of the greatest features of this app is its easy-to-use platform. It also has a beautiful design and an active support team.

Learn Arabic – 50 Languages

arabic-apps

Availability: Android and iOS

Usability: Works offline

Levels: A1, A2 (Common European Framework scale)

Price: Free, with in-app purchases

50 Languages is one of the greatest apps for both Android and iOS users. It helps you explore new vocabulary words in diverse fields (discussing music or sports, expressing emotions, etc.) in addition to offering you handy audio files to listen to when you’re on the go.

Learn Arabic Phrasebook

arabic-apps

Availability: Android

Usability: Works offline

Levels: Beginner, intermediate

Price: Free, in-app purchases

This app offers carefully translated essential phrases in Arabic categorized by subject.

What sets it apart from 50 Languages is it teaches words and full sentences instead of isolated words only. The audio is high quality and recorded by fluent Arabic speakers. You also can mark new and commonly used sentences for easy access.

One of its noteworthy features is that it has detailed guides and tips for travelers and tourists. Yet another is that it’s completely ad-free!

Learn Arabic – Bravolol

arabic-apps

Availability: Android and iOS

Usability: Works offline

Levels: First-timer, beginner

Price: Free, in-app purchases

What’s especially great about this app is its extremely beautiful and easy-to-use platform. You can create virtual flashcards by storing your favorite expressions and reviewing them repeatedly.

English Arabic Dictionary

arabic-apps

Availability: Android

Usability: Works offline

Levels: Beginner, intermediate, advanced, fluent

Price: Free

This app is a free, bidirectional translation app that can be used every step of the way in your whole learning journey. The additional features of this app (beyond looking up words) are exceptional, which makes it stand out from the crowd of other, more average dictionaries.

One of the greatest things about this dictionary is the feature of translating the words without even having to open the app! All you need to do is copy the word that you’d like to translate and you’ll get an instant translation in your notifications bar.

Considering that the number of downloads for this app exceeds one million, and the average user’s rating is 4.2 out of 5 stars, it’s extremely likely this app will prove helpful for you, no matter where you are in your learning progress.

 

Keep testing different apps until you discover those that work best for you, so that you can always learn more effectively.

And don’t forget—learning with apps is only one tool. There’s definitely nothing wrong with using other learning options besides these. The bright side is that downloading Arabic apps is a great idea for every Arabic learner, and they function as all-around excellent companion tools when combined with other learning strategies.

So, you can head off to the app store now.

Good luck!


Yassir Sahnoun is a freelance writer, polyglot and translator living in Morocco. He loves learning about other languages, peoples and cultures. He also works on improving the presence of his native language, Tamazight (Berber), on the Internet. You can learn more about Yassir at YassirSahnoun.XYZ.

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