Top 10 Free Language Learning Apps You Need in 2023

“You can’t get something for nothing.”

That saying simply isn’t true! In today’s world, you can use some awesome language learning apps for free.

And they really can give you a running start!

In this post, we’ll be looking at the 10 best free language learning apps of the year.


1. Best App for Busy Learners: Duolingo memrise-vs-duolingo

Available on: iOS | Android

Languages: Over 20 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Can study for as little as five minutes a day
  • Engaging activities that cover tons of vocabulary
  • A gamified learning platform that keeps you interested


  • Can be easy to lose your learning “streak”
  • In-app purchases for special vocabulary sets, power-ups, timed quizzes
  • Lots of ads

free language learning apps

Duolingo focuses on engaging activities that help you learn by testing your vocabulary. As such, you’ll be asked to speak words/phrases, translate, match words to their meanings and more.

Vocabulary sets are grouped thematically, and you progress along Duolingo’s set order, though if you’re more advanced, you can also test out some of the lessons.

Once you’ve completed a lesson, you can go back to reinforce what you learned.

Once you’re finished with a Duolingo course, check out our suggestions for what to do next.

See our full review of Duolingo here.

2. Best App for Reading Skills: Beelinguapp

Available on: iOS | Android free-language-apps

Languages: Features 13 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Option to learn in your target language (if listed)
  • A diverse range of stories, song lyrics and news
  • Audio for each story is available


  • Limited amount of free stories
  • Lacking grammar explanations

free language learning apps

Beelinguapp is unlike any other. It aims to help students improve their language skills through stories, including news, novels, fairy tales and more.

Each story appears in two languages: one at the top of the page, one at the bottom.

You choose your settings, but it usually works well to have one be your native language and the other be your target language.

Not only can you read stories side-by-side in both languages, but there’s also audio, allowing you to listen to the stories in both.

3. Best App for Word Association: Memrise

Available on: iOS | Androidfree-language-apps

Languages: 200+ different languages.


  • Video examples with language used in real life
  • Expertly built flashcards to help build vocabulary
  • Grammar, reviews, listening and video modes in premium version


  • You have to pay for some features, such as “difficult words”
  • Limited language output
  • Flashcards sometimes lack context

free language learning apps

Want to get immediate access to Memrise? Try the learning app for free.

The free version of Memrise allows you to learn and review tons of vocabulary.

See our full review of Memrise here.

4. Best App for Community Support: Busuu

Available on: iOS | Android free-language-apps

Languages: 12 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Personalize goals based on your own language objectives
  • Explanations of vocabulary, grammar and culture
  • Comprehension checks for critical thinking about word meanings


  • Quality varies depending on your language course
  • Content is somewhat lacking in entertainment value
  • May receive incorrect corrections from community

free language learning apps

Busuu’s free version can give you your flashcard fix while helping you decide whether a full subscription might be in your future.

This is just a small fraction of what Busuu offers to paid members, so if you like the format, you might consider purchasing a subscription, which gives you conversations with native speakers, quizzes, grammar exercises, official certificates and more.

See our full review of Busuu here.

5. Best App for Beginners: 50Languages free-language-apps

Available on: iOS | Android

Languages: A huge variety of languages (over 50), including popular options like Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Lots of high-quality content targeted at beginners
  • Over 50 languages available
  • Freedom to choose which language skills to focus on


  • The interface isn’t very user friendly
  • Lessons are not accurately labeled or described

free language learning apps

If you’re a beginner looking to jumpstart your language learning journey, look no further than 50Languages.

50Languages is designed to teach basic vocabulary, and it offers plenty of free resources that do just that.

The app offers free lessons, tests and games that you can use to learn some of the most essential vocabulary and reinforce what you’ve learned.

In-app purchases are also available to remove ads and open up additional materials.

6. Best App for Innovative Features: Mondly

Available on: iOS | Android free-language-apps

Languages: Features 33 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Innovative ways to learn through VR, AR and a Chatbot
  • Competitive platform to give learners a bit of a push
  • Good for learners of all ages (there’s a separate app for kids)


  • Lack of differentiation between levels
  • The monthly fee covers only one language

free language learning apps

The Mondly app packs a powerful learning punch, and you can experience a fraction of that punch without spending a dime.

As a free user of Mondly’s app, you’ll have access to the basic material and ongoing content to set up a learning routine—a new daily lesson, a weekly quiz and even monthly challenges.

If you find you love the free access but want more material, don’t worry. A paid subscription can give you access to more lessons, conversations, vocabulary builders, conjugation tables and other features.

See our full review of Mondly here.

7. Best All-in-one Language App: Innovative Language

Available on: iOS | Androidfree-language-apps

Languages: Offers over 30 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • A communicative approach to language learning
  • Lessons are practical, plentiful and relevant
  • You have the choice of language, level and topics


  • The lessons are not well organized
  • The quality across language programs isn’t consistent 
  • Videos could be more engaging

free language learning apps

Each week, Innovative Language offers new free audio and video lessons.

You can easily make these freebies part of your learning routine, but if you’re wanting to try their other offerings, you might consider subscribing to a free trial.

Innovative Language’s free trial gives you full access to a premium language course, which includes a whole library of audio and video lessons, lesson notes, dialogues with audio, a personal word bank and more. If you like it, you might consider subscribing for continued access.

See our full review of Innovative Language here.

8. Best App for Building Vocabulary: Drops

Available on: iOS | Android free-language-apps

Languages: Available for around 45 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.


  • Huge vocabulary bank covering a variety of topics
  • Repetition-based learning
  • Ability to skip words you already know


  • No grammar explanations or lessons
  • Minimal audio
  • No conversation practice

free language learning apps

Drops’ goal is to help you learn a language in just five minutes a day.

It’s based on visual learning, pairing images with words in your target language.

This way, you can associate new words with their actual meanings rather than with English words.

And the app has no shortage of words for you to learn. For each language, there are around 1700 words organized into 99 topics.

And best of all, it’s completely free.

If your addiction to Drops is just too great to be contained in five minutes a day, you can subscribe for unlimited learning time.

See our full review of Drops here.

9. Best App for Audio Learners: LingQ

Icon image LingQ - Learn 42 languages

Available on: iOS | Android

Languages: 42 languages including English, French, Spanish, Japanese, Italian, German, Russian, Chinese, Portuguese, Swedish, Korean, Dutch, Polish, Greek, Norwegian, Latin, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Czech, Romanian, Arabic, Finnish, Hebrew, and Turkish.


  • Thousands of audio lessons
  • Ability to look up and save new words to your personal database
  • Transcripts included with lessons, podcasts, audiobooks and interviews


  • You need a paid subscription for more content
  • No grammar lessons

free language learning apps

LingQ is an app that immerses users in text and audio media in their target language.

The app lets you read authentic content like news articles and stories and listen to podcasts, audiobooks and more. 

As you read, you discover “lingQs,” which are words that you don’t know yet.

Save these lingQs to your flashcard deck, and you can review them with the app’s SRS program. All audio content comes with a transcript, so you can easily save new vocabulary words from any content.

Though most of the content is accessed with a paid subscription, there’s some good free beginner content to get you started.

10. Best App for Obscure Languages: Tandem

Available on: iOS | Android free-language-apps

Languages: Over 300 languages have been exchanged on the app, from popular choices like Spanish and Chinese to pop culture creations like Klingon and Dothraki.


  • Excellent segue into in-person interactions
  • Substantial accessibility with a free account
  • Speaking partners can be vetted


  • Learners can easily be bombarded with messages
  • Exchange partners can be hit or miss when it comes to their intentions and consistency
  • Used only for practicing language skills

free language learning apps

Want to start chatting right now? Tandem can hook you up for immediate interaction in your target language.

On Tandem, you can search who’s currently online, message them and start chatting via video, text message, voice message or even picture exchange.

All of the main features are available for free. However, if you want to subscribe, you can also get unlimited translations, opt out of ads and see who viewed your profile.

See our full review of Tandem here.

How to Get the Most Out of Free Language Learning Apps

Consider using multiple apps

Free apps work well together or in conjugation with paid apps. You can use a combination of apps to fill different learning needs.

For example, you can pair a free language exchange app with an online learning program like FluentU, which helps you learn languages in context through authentic videos—like movie trailers, music videos and other media content—that come with interactive subtitles.

Try as many as you want

Don’t limit yourself! There’s no reason not to try all you want when apps are free.

That way, you can get a hands-on feel for how each app works and what it has to offer.

Then, you can make a well-informed decision about which app(s) you want to keep using.

Take advantage of free trials

Many paid apps offer free trials, but by all means, take advantage of these.

You get a period of free learning (yay!), and you’ll also see if the app is valuable enough to be worth spending your hard-earned money on.


Whether you want it totally free or are willing to pay for a more premium product, apps are definitely the way to use new technology to learn a language.

So try out these 10 free language apps today. Better late than never!

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