- 40 categories with 6-8 core lessons, in a bite-sized lesson format
- Ideal for absolute beginners and low intermediate level
- Available on iOS, Android, Web
- Available languages: As of Dec 2019 – 33 languages, learning from your native language
Mondly is headquartered in Romania and was launched in 2013. Its founders Alex Iliescu and Tudor Iliescu saw a space in the market to introduce language learning using smart technologies of the future. Mondly has 50 million students globally and is still growing.
It has already won several awards for using a voice chatbot and advanced use of AR and VR which create unique language learning environments. Indeed, Mondly could be the future of language learning. Once the language side catches up with the tech side of things, they will start making waves.
But they do have some real issues with usability. It is not very well organized, and there are limited grammar explanations. Lessons can be very repetitive, but there is some form of gamification that can help with motivation.
Mondly supports 33 languages, which also include some unusual languages, such as Persian.
The course itself is comprised of 40 different categories, that each has 6-8 core lessons. The lessons include questions about phrases, sentences and words. At the beginning of each lesson, you are given three stars. When you make mistakes, the stars are removed, and you must repeat the lesson if you have lost all 3 of your stars. There is also a review section in case you need a quick recap on what you have learned in your lesson.
It monitors your stars and allocates you points depending on how well you do. As your points increase, you reach new levels and start ranking on a leader board. You also have the option to sort your rank into longest learning streak (how many times you use the app in a row), the month, all-time or total points earned. Ranking can be set nationally or and internationally.
There is also an option to choose a customized language course if you are looking for a job opportunity in a particular industry. The current industries that are available are:- hospitality, retail and healthcare.
Mondly enables you to learn a new language using your native language. This system is an effective and quicker way to learn a language. However, the content for the different languages that you learn is the same. This duplicate content can make the learning process quite boring if you are learning more than one language on the app.
A speech recognition engine lets users interact with a chatbot by using text or speech. This is great practice for users to speak in another language. They also receive adapted audio-visual responses which aid learning. The format is based on everyday real-life situations. For example, interacting with a waiter in a restaurant, etc.
If you want to immerse yourself into language learning, you could try the MondlyVR tool. Since April of this year, multiplayer use has been activated. You need to use a VR headset, and then you select your native language and then it assigns you to a VR room where you can talk to other users. Mondly VR is currently available on Gear VR, Oculus Go, Oculus Rift and Steam.
It is similar in use to Chatbot in the app, except you are placed in a simulated environment to have your conversation. It so immersive, that wherever you are located, you have somebody visually standing in front of you, asking you direct questions. As amazing as it is, there are some downsides to MondlyVR as it is new. The vocabulary section is not available for all the languages, and there are not enough active users for the Multiplayer option. However, if you are into your tech and fancy trying it out, it is only a one-off fee of $4.99.
With mondlyAR, you can create a CGI teacher wherever you want. It is the first app that has tried to capture the feeling of being in a classroom.
The AR technology can create a teacher for you. You can have designated animations for every word. It is also possible to walk inside the environment and see things from a 360-degree perspective.
This is a version for made for businesses so it can help them track their employees’ progress via a Dashboard. They can also benefit from bulk subscriptions.
This app that has been specially designed for children aged 5 to 12. The animation and graphics are more children friendly in mondlyKids. This helps keep the children motivated to learn and spend more time on the app overall.
Mondly offers different apps for nearly all of the 33 languages. This is brilliant if you want to save space on your device. You can choose your level from beginner, intermediate or advanced. You are also able to move around the topics whichever way you prefer. There is no set order to complete anything.
There is a tutorial if you like to be guided on how to use the app and a search function so you can search for your favourite topics.
The lessons are the same as others in the market, offering bite-sized lessons that are easy to use. However, the “pathway” they try to create with your lessons can sometimes seem a bit disorganised. For example, some subjects you would expect further on in a language course, seem to be at the beginning, so the order doesn’t seem to make sense at times.
The interface is not beautifully designed in general, which seems a bit at odds considering its high-tech background. But they do make up for this in interactive illustration for your detailed stats. The stats show how many days you have studied in a row, the number of phrases and words you have learned, your overall progress and your total time on the app.
Gamification To An Extent
The animation and graphics have created a game-like feeling which makes the app feel fun and engaging. Along these lines, there is a degree of gamification with competitive leader boards, statistics and quizzes.
The daily lesson helps you keep motivated and makes you want to come back and learn more to keep your streak going. If you manage to complete an entire week, you can unlock a weekly test that is longer. There is always an incentive to keep going as if you happen to miss one of the daily lessons it can affect your access to the weekly and monthly quizzes.
A nice touch is the daily reminders which are sent to you as notifications. You also have the option to set the actual time you would like them to be sent to you. This is great if you know that you learn better at certain times of the day or night.
Poor Grammar Explanations
There seems to be no great effort to provide information related to grammar. Sometimes you may need to look on other apps to explain this for you, which seems a little ridiculous. This can cause a lot of problems for beginners as they may start to feel a bit lost at times.
Audio Usage Can Cause Issues
Sometimes it is best to turn the audio off as when you have it turned it on you can hear the answer before you work on the exercise. The audio is also fast, and there is no option to slow it down like other apps.
There is a free version, but it is very limited. It consists of 6 lessons, 1 conversation, 1 vocabulary section, and 1 Chatbot conversation. In addition, you also receive the daily/weekly/monthly quizzes.
With the Premium version, you gain access to nearly 2,000 lessons, which are constantly being updated. You also get free access to MondlyAR.
- $9.99 per month for one language
- $47.99 per year ($4/mo) for one language
- $47.99 per year ($4/mo) for all languages
Mondly boasts state-of-the-art tech with advanced AR/VR technology. As a result, Mondly has managed to offer immersive learning that is quite close to experiencing a classroom environment.
Because of its animation and graphics, Mondly is very good for visual learners. It offers an impressive 33 languages in its portfolio and the opportunity to learn in your native language.
However, due to its limited grammar explanations, it is best suited for beginners or lower intermediate level users. The free version is extremely limited, and you are repeatedly prompted to buy the premium version. Best used to review any previous language learning or to increase your vocabulary.
Pros & Cons
|New high-tech ways to learn a language – AR/VR||Limited grammar explanations|
|Learn from your native language||Lessons are very repetitive|
|Voice recording for playback, great for pronunciation practice||Audio feature gives you the answers in advance|
|Motivational gamification||Lots of reported bugs|
|Only suitable for beginners and lower intermediate level|
|Can by confusing as does not show the gender of words|
|Content is identical for different languages, no randomisation|
not worth it
I have bought a lifetime subscription and already regret spending money for it. The content is boring and not useful if you want to learn a language without any prior knowledge. There are better programs that offer much better value for the money.
no explanations and grammar
Unfortunately, the program totally misses explanations for the correct grammar which is essential for learning a language. It also misses an option to repeat the vocabulary that you have learned in the program.
the customer service and support are really great! I got immediate help with the right solution.